Step 4: Pre-Arrival

Preparing for Arrival: Once you have been admitted to OSU, the following information may be useful to you as you prepare for your journey to the U.S. and life in Corvallis.

Pre-Departure Guide

ONID Account

Health and Immunization

Academic Advising



Health Insurance

Bank Accounts and Credit/Debit Cards


ONID Account

Please make sure to activate your ONID account. ONID accounts provide access to e-mail, Online Services and Blackboard and are necessary for registration and on-campus housing application.

To sign up for ONID you must:

1. Change your GAP number (initial set as your birth date in the MMDDYY format) to your own personal password (look under Changing an Expired GAP)

2. Once your GAP number is changed, you will need to activate/sign-up for your Oregon State University ONID account*.  You will then set a new ONID password.

Information about signing up for ONID.

Once you sign up for ONID, you will need to begin checking your ONID e-mail account as OSU instructors and staff use this account to communicate important information to OSU students. You will also now be able to log into Online Services, including MyOSU, Online Services and Blackboard.


Health and Immunization Requirements

Student Health Services: Visit the Student Health Services main website for departments, events, information, policies & procedures.

Health Requirements for International Students:  Visit Student Health Services’ International Student web-page for important information about health care, costs, immunization requirements, health insurance and health services at OSU.

International Student Immunization Requirements: Follow this link to view the International Student Immunization Requirements,  access the Patient Portal, and see the International Health History Form (bottom of the page). Please note that if you fail to provide Student Health Services (SHS) with a completed health history form, proof of required immunizations or completed TB testing (if required) before the designated pre-registration period for next term's classes, SHS will place a HOLD on your account that will prevent you from registering.

Contact: Sue Jackson Sue.Jackson@oregonstate.edu


Academic Advising

If you are an Undergraduate Exchange Student:

During your time at OSU you will be assigned and will work with an Academic Advisor who will help you with your academics-related questions, course selection and registration. Some OSU Academic Departments may have additional registration requirements, prerequisites, or college-specific orientation sessions; please be sure to keep in touch with your Academic Advisor to ensure that your time at OSU is successful.

Note: *Your Academic Advisor will contact you with necessary information for your registration.

Contacts: Undergraduate Academic Advisors by College

If you are a Graduate Exchange Student, and need to connect with an Academic Advisor or obtain a PIN for registration, please contact Val Fearnside Valentina.Fearnside@oregonstate.edu.



You are coming to OSU under the patronage of an exchange agreement signed between OSU and your home institution.  As stipulated in that agreement, student participants must be registered full-time during their time at OSU. 

You must register for and complete a minimum of 12 credits if you are an undergraduate student, or 9 credits if you are a graduate student, each academic term in order to maintain your full-time status.  No more than 3 credits of distance education (ECampus) classes can count toward fulltime enrollment per term. 

OSU online registration is accessible through the Registration Tools.  Select Student Registration and Records, and login.  To register for classes, you will need your OSU identification number, a General Access PIN (GAP) number, and a Registration PIN number.  Your OSU identification number is listed on your Letter of Admission.  Do not include the dashes (-) when you enter the number online.  Your General Access PIN (GAP) number is initially set as your date of birth, in the MMDDYY format.  After you have logged in for the first time you will be asked to change your GAP to a new number known only to you.  Your Registration PIN number will be emailed to you by your Academic Department prior to the start of the term.  Some Academic Departments require that you meet with an Academic Advisor before registering for classes and will give you a Registration PIN number at that time.

Please follow this link to access OSU Course Catalogs and Schedules (see bottom of the web-page).

If you are an Undergraduate Exchange Student please check with your Academic Advisor for more information about how to register.

For help registering, all  Exchange Students can use the Registrar Help Page for important information.

Contact: Val Fearnside Valentina.Fearnside@oregonstate.edu

Note: * Please be aware that OSU cannot guarantee to place you in courses you listed on your Course Preference Form during application process. The Course Preference Form is used to notify your assigned Academic Advisor at OSU of your interests and is used as a guideline only. You will not be automatically enrolled in the courses you listed on your Course Preference Form. You will need to complete your on-line course registration prior to or upon arrival in consultation with both your OSU Academic Advisor and an advisor at your host campus.



Visit University Housing and Dining Services’ International Student web-page to learn about On-Campus, Homestay, and Off-Campus Housing. You will also be able to browse through frequently asked questions about housing, dining and transportation.

Please check out these links for some short-term housing options:

1. Hotel Listing

2. Homestays

3. Crossroads Homestay

4. Corvallis I-House

Contact: Jacqueline Chambers Jacqueline.Chambers@oregonstate.edu



Health Insurance

International Student Health Insurance: OSU requires all non-resident international students and their dependents (living in the U.S.) be covered by health insurance. The health insurance must meet federal, state, and OSU requirements. Students must enroll in the OSU International Student Health Plan unless they provide proof of alternate health insurance and a completed waiver application. 

Note *If you are considering purchasing your own health insurance coverage, please review the International Insurance Waiver Requirements and submit an International Waiver Form to the fax or e-mail listed on the form.

*You can print a copy of your insurance card from the Aetna Student Health webpage (chose the link on the right hand side of the screen).

Contact: Mary Lloyd-Rex mary.lloyd-rex@oregonstate.edu


Bank Accounts and Credit/Debit Cards

When you arrive in Corvallis, you will need to open a checking/and or savings account(s) with a bank. There are many banks in Corvallis. You can find which banks have local offices by looking in the Corvallis Phone Book (Type "Corvallis" and look in the "Finance" section). You can find out more information about the policies and procedures of each bank by looking at the bank's Web site. You usually will need two pieces of picture ID (passport and student ID card), your local mailing address, and money to open an account.

Checking accounts are designed for paying bills and general living expenses, allowing unlimited deposits and withdrawals each month. When you open a checking account, you receive checks, deposit slips, and a transaction register. You can also request an Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) card that will allow you to withdraw or deposit money at ATM terminals worldwide.

Savings accounts are designed to store money for long periods of time. Savings accounts often have a limit on the number of withdrawals that can be made each month. Money usually earns a small amount of interest.

In the U.S., the most widely accepted credit cards are Visa and Master Card. It is not easy for international students to obtain credit cards in the U.S. It is best to apply for a credit card in your home country. If you would like to take cash from your credit or debit account, you can use a Plus, Cirrus, Interlink, or Star Network bank card to make cash withdrawal. ATMs are located in the airport, on the OSU campus, and around Corvallis.