Preparing for departure
Q: When should I plan to arrive on campus at Newman University
A: You must arrive on campus NO LATER than the date entered on your I-20 in section 5.* Undergraduate students admitted for the Fall 2013 should arrive on campus between August 17 and 19, 2013. Please note: If you cannot arrive by August 19, your admission will be deferred to a future semester of your choice. If you arrive prior to August 17, you will need to find alternative accommodations until Campus Housing opens on August 17, or incur a $25 per night early check-in penalty.
Q: Should I notify NU when I receive my visa
Q: Should I notify NU when I have my arrival information?
Q: What should I bring with me when I come to the US?
A: You should pack clothes that accommodate a variety of seasons, since Kansas weather is known to change quickly! The temperature in Wichita, Kansas, varies anywhere from -5 degrees Celsius in the winter (December through March) to 35 degrees Celsius in the summer (May through August). Bedding (pillows, sheets, blankets) and towels are also essential. During orientation week, we will provide transportation to a local shopping center where personal items (bedding, school supplies, toiletries, etc) can be purchased at a reasonable price if you do not bring these items with you. Check out the Fulbright website for more information on what to bring with you and what you should leave at home: http://www.fulbright.org.uk/pre-departure/travel-to-the-us/what-to-pack
Arriving at Newman University
Q: What can I expect when I arrive in Wichita?
A: If you have notified the International Admissions Office of your complete itinerary prior to traveling (and plan to arrive on one of the recommended dates), we will have a university representative meet you upon your arrival. They will help you get situated in the residence halls (if you have completed the Housing Application) and assist you with any necessary items to be comfortable your first night.
Q: Will my room in the residence hall be ready for me?
A: You must complete the housing application form at https://newmanu.wufoo.com/forms/residence-life-housing-application/ If you fulfilled this requirement prior to your arrival, the Residence Life Office will prepare your room for you.
Q: Will the dining hall be open before classes start?
A: Your meals during orientation week will be provided in the dining hall.
Q: Must I go to orientation?
A: Yes, orientation is mandatory for all new students. You will receive important information regarding enrollment, the US academic system, cultural adaptation and life at Newman University. If you have not already done so, you will also take placement exams which will help us determine the proper course levels for you.
Q: What is the purpose of orientation?
A: New Student Orientation is designed to prepare you for university life in the United States. Your attendance at this week-long event will not only help you make informed decisions, but will give you the opportunity to meet other students, faculty and staff before classes even start!
Q: What is placement testing?
A: Placement testing is a process that helps us determine your proper English and Mathematics courses. These examinations will take one to two hours. You do not need to study for these tests; however it is important for you to take these seriously as they will determine your first semester courses. Placement Exams can and should be completed online prior to your arrival at Academic Affairs.
Q: What is an academic advisor?
A: An academic advisor is a faculty member from your program of study who will assist you in choosing the correct courses for your major. This advisor knows the requirements for your specific major and will direct you to take the courses which will fulfill graduation requirements in your area.
Q: Do I get to choose my own classes?
A: You will meet with your academic advisor each semester to build an appropriate class schedule. Ultimately, the advisor must approve your classes in order to complete enrollment and to ensure that you stay on the path to graduation.
Q: I am a business student. Will I take all business classes my first semester?
A: No, students are required to take a variety of classes to complete their degree due to General Education requirements in the United States. Although you may have some entry level business courses during your first semester, be aware that your first two years of university study will mainly consist of General Education courses.
Q: What is general education?
A: General Education (also called Liberal Arts and Sciences Education) is an integral part of the educational system in the United States. Subjects included in this requirement are: Anthropology, Art, Biology, Chemistry, Economics, History, Humanities, Literature, Mathematics, Music, Philosophy, Physical Science, Psychology, Sociology, Speech, Theater, Theology and Writing.
Q: What is a credit hour?
A: A credit hour is a unit counted toward completion of an academic program. Each course is worth a certain number of credit hours (or “credits”) and the number of credit hours reflects the number of hours a student spends in class for that course per week. Students in the United States typically take 12-15 credit hours per semester, which is usually the equivalent of 4-5 classes. A bachelor’s degree at Newman requires a minimum of 124 credit hours.
Q: How many classes do I need to take in order to maintain full-time status?
A: Undergraduate students on F-1 visas are required to take a minimum of 12 credit hours each semester and Newman graduate students on F-1 visas are required to take a minimum of 6 credit hours each semester to maintain full-time status. You must be full-time to stay in status with Immigration.
Q: When do I need to pay my tuition?
A: Be prepared to pay tuition during orientation week. This amount will include tuition, fees, housing costs and health insurance for the semester. You can pay in cash, traveler’s checks or credit card. We also offer a payment management plan which provides you with a low cost option for payment of tuition and other educational expenses.
Q: Why am I required to have health insurance?
Q: Am I required to live in the residence halls?
A: Full-time students are required to live in the university housing facilities during their first four semesters of enrollment or until junior standing is attained.
Q: Am I required to have a meal plan?
A: You are required to have a meal plan if you are younger than 21 years of age and live in Merlini Hall, New Hall or Beata Hall. If you are older than 21 years of age and live in Fugate Hall you have the option to take a meal plan or prepare food in your kitchen.
Q: Is it necessary to purchase books for my classes or can I share?
A: Professors require that each student bring their own book to class. Sharing books disrupts other students in class and is not allowed. As part of the enrollment process, we will go to the Newman Bookstore to purchase the books required for your courses.
Q: What is academic integrity?
A: Academic integrity involves honesty with schoolwork and testing, among other things. Violation of academic integrity includes cheating on examinations, writing quizzes and plagiarism (representing someone else’s ideas, writing or other intellectual property as your own). For more information, see the Ethics Code on page 11 and 12 of Newman University’s Student Handbook.
Q: What do my professors expect of me?
A: Your professors will give you a syllabus in the first week of the semester. This syllabus will explain the requirements of the class, including exam and assignment due dates. If you have any questions regarding expectations and what is required to be successful in the course, you should contact your professor.
Q: How important is class attendance?
A: Class attendance and class participation are very important in United States classrooms and are often counted as a percentage of your grade.
Q: How can I succeed in my classes?
A: You should attend class each time it meets, participate in class discussions, ask questions when you are in doubt, visit your professors during their office hours to discuss any concerns about the course, and take advantage of any supplemental or tutoring programs offered on campus.
Q: What is the Newman Code of Ethics? Who does it apply to?
A: Newman University students are to function as ethical citizens including their work pursued in the academic community. For more information, see the Ethics Code on page 11 and 12 of the Student Handbook.
Q: How much time should I dedicate to studying, reading the book and homework?
A: It is recommended that you study two hours for every one hour you are in class. This can include reading the textbooks, doing your homework assignments, reviewing your handouts and notes taken during class, and any other methods you use to prepare for class.
Q: What is active note-taking?
A: Note-taking is an active listening process and the written recording of important ideas from lectures or textbooks. Adequate notes are necessary for efficient study and learning in college. Note-taking involves being quick and selective in what you write down. Do not try to write everything down, as you may miss key points from the professor’s lecture.
Q: Why do I have to be serious about my studies from the beginning of the semester?
A: Even from the first week, professors will begin grading you on assignments, class participation, quizzes and exams. Forming good study habits at the beginning the semester will contribute greatly to your success in the classroom.
Q: Why did my friend get a different kind or amount of scholarship than me?
A: Scholarships and financial aid packages are based on different types of criteria. Academic scores, admission status, program of study, and activity participation may all impact this amount and therefore each financial aid package is designed specifically to your eligibility and may differ from others.
Q: Can I get more scholarships after enrolling?
A: International students are generally awarded the maximum amount of scholarship when they are accepted to the university. However, in some exceptional cases, it may be possible to receive more scholarships after enrolling at Newman. Students can perform scholarship searches on-line at sites such as www.fastweb.com or can review current listings on Newman’s website by visiting our scholarships page. In some instances, students who elect to participate in varsity athletics or other co-curricular activities while attending Newman may be able to receive a scholarship for their involvement but limitations may apply.
Q: Can my scholarships be taken away?
A: Academic scholarships do have requirements that must be maintained or else a student will lose this scholarship. Please read the scholarship acceptance letter included with your I-20 explaining these requirements. Students may also have certain scholarships reduced if they move off campus and should check with the Financial Aid Office first to see what kind of an impact a move might have.
Q: Can I find a job?
A: International students have the option of seeking on-campus employment. However, the number of on-campus jobs available is extremely limited, therefore this work should be viewed as supplemental income only. Please keep in mind that international students are not allowed to work more than 20 hours per week. Off-campus employment is prohibited by U.S. Immigration except in special circumstances when approved by the International Student Advisor.
Q: Should I get a job my first semester?
A: It is recommended that international students wait until their second semester before applying for on-campus positions. This allows for time to adjust to the new culture, new educational system and college life in the United States.
Q: I don’t have a car. How can I get around town?
A: Public bus service is available in Wichita, and there is a bus route that stops on the Newman campus. There are several shopping and eating establishments within walking distance of the university, including a major shopping mall. Newman University is not responsible for providing transportation to students.
Q: Can I set up a bank account?
A: Yes. The Office of International Admissions will assist you with setting up a bank account during orientation week. At this time you can become familiar with the U.S. banking system.
Q: Will I have access to a computer when I arrive?
A: Yes, there are computer labs on campus available for Newman students.
Q: I have never lived this far away from home before. What can I expect?
A: You are embarking on a new adventure in a new place and we realize that this transition can be both exciting and overwhelming. During orientation week, we will have a presentation on cultural adaptation with some helpful hints on making your transition as easy as possible, as well as how to maximize your experience at Newman University.
Q: I don’t know anyone in Wichita. What types of activities will be available for me to get to know other students and the area?
A: Newman University has an active Multicultural Leadership Organization, a student organization that promotes cultural awareness and unity. Many international students choose to participate in this club which meets regularly to hold activities for the university.