+ International Students – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
Spring 2021 Opening

International Students

Do international students need to quarantine upon arrival? If so, where and how?

Yes, consistent with NYS regulations. The staff in residential education, along with Marylyn Uhnak, Associate Vice President and Director of International Enrollment and Success, will coordinate arrival with international students.

For international students who cannot meet the reopening date at HWS because embassies are closed and flights have yet to resume, can they take classes remotely, including classes that are in-person or hybrid?

Students who are unable to physically arrive in the U.S. for the start of the fall semester will be able to work with their professors in all types of courses if they are delayed in entry. Students who cannot arrive at all will be able to continue in remote mode.

If an international student cannot return to the United States but plans to take classes remotely, do they need to pay the health and wellness fee, student activity fee and international health insurance fee?


If an international student is taking classes remotely (from their home country), will HWS provide support to ensure that their F1/I20 status remains active?

Right now, the federal guidelines are allowing international students to take courses online in their home country and maintain their F1 student visa status.

When should I plan to return to campus?

All students who travel to HWS from outside the U.S. must quarantine for 2 weeks upon arrival. New students to campus should plan to arrive on campus for quarantine no later than January 7, while continuing students should plan to arrive on campus for quarantine no later than January 10.

Will there be an Orientation for new International students who were not able to make it to campus in August?

Yes. A Hybrid (In-person/Remote) orientation is planned beginning the evening of Thursday, January 21 with most activities occurring on Friday, January 22.

How should I pack if I am coming to campus for the first time?

New York gets pretty cold in the winter time, especially in January and February. Layers of clothing are an absolute must, especially if you will be arriving from a warmer climate. Pack long pants, socks, several close-fitting, long-sleeved shirts, and sweaters or sweatshirts. You are likely to encounter snow and can expect daily temperatures between 31° and 16° Fahrenheit (0 and -8° Celsius). Additionally, if you will be arriving to campus directly from your international flight, we strongly encourage you to plan ahead. Linens are not supplied in the residence halls so we encourage you to order ahead. They can be shipped directly to campus, and we suggest you order from your preferred retail store or, you could order through the Residence Hall Linen Program.

I was not on campus for the Fall semester, what can I expect for the Spring semester? Will I be able to meet other first year students?

Absolutely! In addition to the orientation that is planned, First-year students will be placed in residence halls with other first year students. The Office of Student Activities has planned a number of spring activities including a Winter Wonderland Carnival to celebrate the beginning of the semester. Beyond this, the Office of Student Activities will continue to work with the presidents of each club or organization to discuss with them how they can hold events during the spring semester while still maintaining social distancing and wearing face covering.

What can I do while quarantining on campus? When I am out of quarantine, can someone show me around campus?

Students can go outside for a limited period for purposes of fresh air and movement, but must avoid going near other persons during that time, maintain strict social distancing, and wear a mask whenever outside or in contact with other people. Meals will be delivered to their quarantine location. For new students, there will be a campus tour built in to Orientation.

Will there be transportation for new students from the airport to campus in January?

Yes, transportation will be available from the airport in Rochester, New York on both Thursday, January 7 and Friday, January 8 for new students arriving. You must provide your flight details to Marylyn Uhnak no later than Dec. 31.

I’m a student who has been out of the US for the Fall Semester, what do I need to know ahead of returning to campus?

  • If you have studied remotely for the fall semester, maintaining your F-1 status, you should ensure that you have a valid travel endorsement. If your travel endorsement is more than 1 year old, you will need a new I-20 and should be in contact with Marylyn Uhnak.
  • If you took leave for the fall semester, your SEVIS record has been terminated and we will need to either issue you a new Initial I-20 or reactivate your terminated record. You should be in contact with Marylyn Uhnak to determine the course of action.

I’m a student who has been outside the US for the fall semester and the travel endorsement on my I-20 has expired. What should I do?

You will need a new I-20 and should be in touch with Marylyn Uhnakas soon as you are able to.

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Questions and comments should be directed to:

Office of Campus Life
Smith Hall, First Floor
Geneva, NY 14456
(315) 781-3900

Questions regarding health issues should be directed to:

Hubbs Health Center
119 St. Clair Street
Geneva, NY 14456
Phone: 315-781-3600
Appt. Phone: 315-781-4530
Fax: 315-781-3802