Welcome to Your Tips of the Week
Issue 1
Dear New International Students,

Congratulations! I’m honored to welcome you to the University of Maryland. All of you have taken different paths to arrive at UMD, and together we create a diverse community. We are excited to get to know each and every one of you. The University of Maryland is a vibrant, active and committed community that is eager and able to meet your academic needs during this time of change.

The last several months have altered all of our lives. Ambiguity, uncertainty and more change is inevitable as new information, policies and practices are revealed. We are acutely aware that new public health guidelines, government actions, university policies and other actors are making daily decisions that directly impact you as international students. As your adviser and supporter, I constantly witness reminders of your collective resilience. Take a moment to reflect on your own journey to UMD. What new skills did you hone and acquire to prepare yourself? How did you discuss your choice with your family? Who told you that you were ready for this step and could succeed? Why did you decide to accept your admission to the University of Maryland? This path was not completed quickly; it took planning and steps to execute. I hope you are proud of yourself, because we stand with you in admiration of your achievements thus far. 

Your journey here may have been long, short, or traveled through winding roads. But now it is time to seize this moment as new students. I want to impress on you that your time with UMD will go by fast, even though it may not seem like it now. So, take advantage of the various opportunities to connect with students, faculty and advisers, immerse yourself in this new culture, and learn from your peers and faculty members. UMD has over 300 student-run organizations on campus. Get involved in student organizations, volunteer and serve in leadership roles. Discover more about yourself and explore new interests while at the university.

The Office of International Student & Scholar Services is here to support you throughout your studies. From questions about immigration, to learning how to access campus resources, we are here to help you. We look forward to meeting you!

Read the “Tips of the Week” emails you will receive and review our website . There, you will find the answers to many of your questions.

Once again, congratulations! 


Susan-Ellis Dougherty
Director, International Student & Scholar Services
1126 H.J. Patterson Hall
University of Maryland
International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS), at the University of Maryland, is excited to welcome you to our community! Over the next several weeks, you will receive a weekly email from our office that will answer important questions about the university, explain processes you need to complete, and prepare you to begin your studies with UMD. On June 15, the university is expected to make a decision about how to proceed with the Fall 2020 semester and the Tip of the Week will be your most up-to-date source of information on how this affects international students. ISSS is here to support you every step of the way. 
Most of the information we’ll provide in these weekly emails is relevant to all incoming international students; however, some information will be specific to Graduate (G), Undergraduate (U), Exchange (E) students, F-1 or J-1 visa holders.
The following icons will be used to designate when information is specific to one of these groups.
When information is specific to a student
group (U, G or E) that also holds a specific
visa type (F-1 or J-1) the following icon format will be used.
Connect With Us
Ask your questions via our Live Chat , available on our website Monday-Friday from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. ET.

Schedule a Virtual Appointment with an ISSS advisor. Appointments can be scheduled Monday-Friday, 9:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 1:30-3:30 p.m. ET.

We are also available by email:
Tips of the Week
The ISSS Tip of the Week will cover a large variety of topics, including:
  • Directory ID
  • Orientation
  • Coming to Maryland
  • Housing
  • Immunizations
  • Social Activities and Career Services
  • Health Insurance
  • Local Transportation
  • Student Payment
  • Beware of Scams
  • Driver Licenses and Social Security
Pre-Arrival Engagement with ISSS Webinar

Please join our staff for a webinar on Pre-Arrival engagement on Thursday, June 4!

In this live session you will learn about the various ways ISSS will be communicating with you as you prepare for fall.  

To attend the event, please click one of the link below to register.

Please note: both sessions will cover the same material, so you should only attend one. If you are not able to attend the webinar, it will be recorded and uploaded to our website. Look for the video link in an upcoming Tip of the Week!
Webinar Schedule
We are introducing a series of webinars that will dive into several topics in more depth. Keep an eye out for additional webinars that may be added later in the summer.
June 4 : Pre-Arrival Engagement with ISSS Webinar (See details above)
June 24, 9:00 a.m. ET: Leasing in the U.S. ( Register )
June 26, 9:00 a.m. ET: Off-Campus Housing ( Register )
July 2, 9:00 a.m. ET: Graduate Student Life ( Register )
July 10, 9:00 a.m. ET: Career Services ( Register )
Your Directory ID
As a student, your Directory ID will be your designation for your email address as well as your username for accessing UMD systems across campus.

To set up your Directory ID, please click here and follow the on-screen instructions.
Testudo is an interactive web portal that allows students to complete transactions related to their course registration and academic record.

Services available on Testudo include:
  • Registration (Add/drop courses)
  • Degree Audit (uAchieve)
  • Graduation Application & Diploma Status
  • Transcript/Enrollment Certification Request
  • Unofficial Transcript
  • Waitlist Check-In
  • Student Schedule
  • GPA Calculator

Some of these features, such as adding or dropping classes, will only be available to you once you have attended an orientation session. Testudo offers training resources and how-to videos on registration, transcript request and waitlist check-in.
We hope that you find these emails informative and helpful. You are receiving
them because you have been accepted to the University of Maryland for the Fall
2020 semester. If you do not intend to enroll at UMD and would like to stop receiving ISSS emails, please inform ISSS via your iTerp checklist, your department, and either the Graduate School (graduate students) or the undergraduate admissions office (undergraduate students) that you decline your admission.