Arrival and Orientation
Arrival at the U.S. Port of Entry
U.S. Immigration (DHS)
During the flight into the U.S., you will receive an I-94 Arrival/Departure Card and a U.S. Customs Declaration. Complete them carefully in blue or black ink while you are on the airplane. Your name should be listed exactly as it is on your Form I-20. Avoid errors which must be crossed out.
Upon arrival at the port of entry, proceed to the terminal's international arrival hall for inspection at one of the Department of Homeland Security stations. Cell phone use is not permitted in this area. As you approach the inspection station, have at hand your:
- Passport with Visa
- SEVIS Form I-20 or DS-2019
- Form I-94 Arrival/Departure Card and Customs Declaration Form (documents given to you and completed by you while on the plane)
Your financial documents should be readily available, but you need not present them unless they are requested.
Like all entering visitors, you will be asked to state the reason you wish to enter the United States. It is important that you tell the Customs and Border Protection Officer that you will be a student.
The Officer may ask you some questions, will review your documents, and then endorse your passport, I-94 card, and I-20 with the proper stamps. Generally, they will also staple your I-94 Arrival/Departure Card into your passport. The Immigration Officer will then return all of these documents to you. Each of these documents is important and difficult to replace. Please keep them together in a safe place until you arrive at Hiram College.
You also may be required to participate in an entry/exit process called US-VISIT. During this process you will visit a kiosk where you will follow the directions for finger scans and digital photo.
After clearing immigration, you will proceed to the baggage claim area to retrieve your checked luggage. You will then pass through U.S. Customs.
All articles brought into the United States, including gifts for other persons, must be declared to U.S. Customs. If all items you have to declare are entitled to free entry under an exemption, you may orally declare to the Customs Inspector and are not required complete the reverse side of the Declaration Form. However, the Inspector may ask you to make a written declaration if deemed necessary.
There is no limit to the amount of money (U.S. or foreign currency), traveler cheques, money orders, or negotiable instruments in bearer form that you may bring into or take out of the United States. However, a report must be filed with U.S. Customs at the time you arrive or depart with an amount that exceeds $10,000 (USD) (or the equivalent in foreign currency). This is reported on the Customs Declaration. If you fail to declare amounts that exceed $10,000 (USD), a Customs Inspector may assume that the funds are illegal and may confiscate them.
Do not pack or attempt to carry food, plants, or anything that can be interpreted as drug paraphernalia (such as pipes or tobacco papers). These items will be confiscated at the port of entry.
Meeting the HC Peer Assistants at the Airport
New students, who are arriving on the Official Arrival Day, August 19, and who have made arrangement with the International Office prior to departure for the U.S., will be met by a Hiram College Peer Assistant in Baggage Claim of the Cleveland Airport. Peer Assistants will wear a red t-shirt, carry a "Hiram College" sign, and wait at the "Welcome to Cleveland" desk inside the baggage claim area.
Please keep us informed of any travel changes. If you are lost, you have missed a flight, or a flight has been delayed or cancelled, please phone the Office of International Student Services immediately:
Office of International Student Services
11730 Garfield (State Route 700)
Hiram, OH 44234
Telephone: (cc:1) 330-569-5388
Fax: (cc:1) 330-569-5183
Office hours: Monday-Friday, 8:30 am-5:00 pm
International Orientation & Institute
International Student Orientation is designed to help you adjust your body clock, acclimate to the campus, organize many practical matters, and make new friends. Residence hall room assignments are made prior to International Orientation so international students move directly into their rooms on the official arrival day.
You will want to bring about $500-$1,000 USD in traveler cheques or currency. This provides for immediate expenses such as personal items, supplies for your room, books, and entertainment during your first two weeks.
Hiram College Institute Week begins at the conclusion of International Student Orientation. All new students are required to participate. The Week is designed to help you connect with faculty members, staff, and other new students, introduce you to campus services, make (more!) new friends, and begin the academic experience at Hiram.
Bring a big SMILE! International Orientation and Institute provide many fun activities and we hope you enjoy this introduction to Hiram!