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e s f home link - e s f college of environmental science and forestry

New Student Arrival & Orientation

You are eligible to enter the U.S. as early as 30 days prior to the start of your academic program as indicated in item 5 of your I-20 or item 3 of your DS-2019. You are expected to enter the U.S. in time to attend the mandatory International Student Orientation. If there is a situation that necessitates entering the U.S. after the program start date indicated on your document, please contact the Office of International Education as you will require a new I-20 or DS-2019 with a later program start date to enter the U.S.

International Student Orientation

All new international students are required to attend a MANDATORY International Student Orientation provided by SUNY-ESF's Office of International Education. This orientation always takes place prior to other mandatory orientation provided by SUNY-ESF and is typically 1-2 weeks prior to the start of the semester. For more information on time, date, and location, please email the Office of International Education at oie@esf.edu.

Other ESF Orientations

You must also attend the applicable college orientation:

Immigration Check-in at ESF

Upon arrival in Syracuse, NY, after the International Student Orientation, you must check-in at the ESF Office of International Education. There will be a sign up form at orientation for you to schedule an appointment during the week before classes. Please bring a completed SEVIS Registration Form, and all of your (and your dependent’s) immigration documents (e.g., I-20/DS-2019, passport with visa stamp, and electronic I-94 card - click here for I-94) with you when you come to your check-in appointment. All of your documents will be scanned and an electronic student file will be created for you.

English Language Assessment Exam (ELAE)

  • Required for all undergraduate non-exchange students (new and transfer) in order to determine the proper English class placement.
  • Required for graduate students who:
    • obtained a TOEFL score under 600; under 250 if you took the computerized test; under 100 if you took the internet-based, IBT, version,;
    • obtained an IELTS score under 7.0; or
    • attended SU's English Language Institute.