FIUTS connects students with local and global communities through programs that build international awareness, cross-cultural communication and informed leadership.
International Welcome Weeks and
Housing at the UW
Pre-Arrival Email #2 of 8
Hello again!

This is the second in a series of weekly e-mails from FIUTS for new UW international students. If you missed the first e-mail (or just want to review it), you can find it archived on our website.

In this e-mail, we'll introduce you to various housing options and also help you understand which UW orientation(s) you should attend.

Don't forget to complete the pre-arrival survey to let us know what you are hoping to get out of your experience!
Quick Links
Orientations at the UW
FIUTS International Student Orientation, First Year Programs A&O, departmental orientations -- which ones do you actually have to attend?

FIUTS International Welcome Weeks:
FIUTS International Welcome Weeks is scheduled for September 11-22. There will be activities, information sessions, tours, and fun events throughout the 10-day program. During International Welcome Weeks, all new international students are required to attend one FIUTS International Student Orientation Session, during which you will connect with other new and returning students, prepare for your cultural transition to the UW and U.S., and complete your compulsory immigration check-in process. In addition to your required session, we recommend you participate in as much of International Welcome Weeks as your schedule allows, to help you in having a successful transition to the UW.

You may have other orientation programs you need to attend. Here's the breakdown: 
Freshmen Students: You should attend a minimum of TWO orientations: a FIUTS International Student Orientation Session and First Year Programs (FYP) Advising and Orientation (A&O, either the hybrid one-day online/one day on-campus or two days on-campus). You are also welcome to attend Dawg Daze, which are activities that take place after FIUTS International Welcome Weeks and before classes begin. If you participate in the hybrid A&O program, your FIUTS International Student Orientation Session will take place immediately following the on-campus portion of your A&O. If you participate in a two-day on-campus A&O, you will attend the FIUTS International Student Orientation Session on the afternoon of September 21.

Transfer Students: You should attend a minimum of TWO orientations: the FIUTS International Student Orientation Session on September 26 and FYP Transfer Advising and Orientation (one day on-campus). You are also welcome to attend Dawg Daze.
Exchange Students (undergraduate and graduate): You should attend the FIUTS International Student Orientation Session on September 13.

Graduate and Professional Students: You should attend a FIUTS International Student Orientation Session. Sessions for graduate students are offered on September 11, 12, 14, 15, and 18. You must register for your chosen session by July 31. You may also have a departmental orientation; check with your department.
Early Fall Start Students: Freshmen enrolled in Early Fall Start must attend a mandatory EFS International Student Orientation on Sunday, August 20.
In addition, First Year Programs is offering an EFS-only A&O session on August 21 and 22, which you can register for to complete your A&O requirement (see above). When you're not in class, please attend FIUTS International Welcome Weeks in September to continue connecting with other new students.
ISS Tip of the Week:
New students can’t enter the USA earlier than 30 days before the program start date printed on their I-20 form. The government is OK with you entering anytime between 30 days early and your program start date. We recommend coming early enough to recover from jet lag and attend orientation and FIUTS International Welcome Week events.

Some students will choose to arrive early so they can:
  • Take in-person placement tests
  • Find off-campus housing
  • Find an on-campus part-time job
  • Travel inside the USA

Our recommendation is to enter the USA sometime in the 30 days, and then stay! More than one U.S. border entry in the 30-day entry window can be tricky; border officers may be confused about your travel goals and have lots of questions.

Finding Housing in Seattle
Finding a place to live in Seattle can be challenging, especially if you are not familiar with the process. It is your responsibility to secure permanent housing, whether on or off campus.

On-Campus Housing: If you would like to live on campus, you should have already applied for on-campus housing. The regular residence hall move-in dates are September 21 and 22. If you will live on-campus, you can apply for Early Arrival Housing, which will allow you to move into the dorms as early as September 10 for an additional fee. Visit the Housing and Food Services (HFS) website to read about campus housing options.

Off-Campus Housing: It can be challenging to secure off-campus housing before arriving in Seattle, but it's a good idea to get an early start researching your options. The Off-Campus Housing Resources page on the FIUTS website can help you to get started on the search. Be aware that if you start contacting potential landlords prior to arriving in Seattle, you need to use caution when making arrangements with people you do not know, and do not wire money to individuals you have not met.

Short-Term Homestay: The deadline to apply for the FIUTS Welcome Weeks Homestay Program is one month prior to your arrival in Seattle. If you wish to spend your first week with a local host, apply now. Because of the high demand for this program, we cannot guarantee placement. However, most students who submit applications are placed. 

Visit the Housing Resources page on the FIUTS website for additional resources and ideas to help you investigate both temporary and long-term housing. Doing research before arriving in Seattle and talking to other students helps. ​ 
Off Campus Residencies: We offer newly constructed, affordable micro-studio apartments in a student community outfitted with sensible apartment features such as hardwood-look vinyl flooring, secured access with intercom system, onsite laundry facility and built-in desks. We are located just north of the University of Washington near bus lines, restaurants, shopping, and Burke-Gilman Trail.
TWELVE at U-District: TWELVE is a modern, green living community featuring open-concept studio, 1 and 2 bedroom apartments. Located in the heart of University District, TWELVE is walking distance to the University of Washington and has convenient access to an eclectic mix of urban shopping areas, historic architecture and great cafes. And, not to mention a quick bus ride from downtown Seattle and Elliott Bay.  Plus, we put the emphasis on community with our resident events, and our professional, on-site management and maintenance staff!
Housing During International Welcome Weeks
You have several options for housing when you arrive on campus for FIUTS International Welcome Weeks:
  • Freshmen participating in Early Fall Start (EFS) are eligible to apply for EFS housing.
  • International students who are confirmed to live in the UW residence halls for the academic year are eligible to apply for Early Arrival Housing. For more information, and the application (available early August), visit the UW Housing & Food Services (HFS) Early Arrival Housing website.
  • You can apply to participate in the FIUTS Welcome Week Homestay Program, which will match you with a local family during your first week in Seattle.
  • You can stay in a local hotel or hostel. A list of temporary housing options can be found on our housing resources webpage. This is the best option for parents or family members if they are accompanying you.
Top three reasons to sign up for a FIUTS Welcome Week Homestay:

  1. Meet a Seattle local. Make a connection right away, learn about American culture first hand, and get to know Seattle away from campus.
  2. FIUTS volunteer hosts are a great source of support during your first week. Hosts will (if their schedule allows) pick you up from the airport, take you shopping for housing necessities, and help you set up a bank account and cell phone.
  3. FIUTS homestays are affordable. The homestay fee is only $100 for your week-long stay!

Questions? Contact
We'll continue to cover important topics like airport arrival, immigration check-in, and Seattle info in our future e-mails. Please send us an e-mail if you have any questions in the meantime. Thanks for reading. We look forward to welcoming you to our amazing city and university soon!

Amy Bergstrom
Manager of Student Programs at FIUTS
Join the FIUTS UW International Students Group on Facebook
Have you missed any of the pre-arrival emails? Review the archive on our website.
Contact FIUTS