Current Students

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Expert Advice is Available for International Students

Please schedule an appointment with an ISO advisor for a personal meeting to discuss your questions, concerns, and experience at GW University  in detail. You can also send a quick message to [email protected].

When coming for your scheduled appointment, please bring your valid passport with your visa stamp in it, your I-94 card and your GW I-20 (or DS-2019 for J-1 visa holders).

Advising is meant to answer questions related to your immigration status, or to address any other concerns you may have related to your academic, personal or cultural adjustment. Travel signatures and social security letters cannot currently be processed while you wait during your visit. During peak travel seasons (before holidays and summer break), travel signatures will take 10 business days before you plan on traveling. This additional processing time is due to new federal regulations with which ISO is required to comply by law.

If you have a request that requires additional paperwork and/or signatures from your academic advisor or the Dean of your school (Full-Time Certification, Reduced Course Load, leave of absence, social security letter), please bring the original documents with you to the ISO. The ISO does not have copy machines available for student-use, but the ISO will photocopy your original documents.

GW and F-1 Visa Regulations

ISO is here to assist students and scholars with maintaining legal status and to make your stay in the U.S. a rewarding and enjoyable experience. However, it is important to remember that the ultimate responsibility for maintaining legal status in the U.S. is yours. It is extremely important that you be vigilant about following U.S. immigration laws because violations may result in harsh consequences.

ISO staff members are available to provide answers to your questions and are prepared to help you understand and comply with the often complex immigration requirements.

It is your responsibility to attend GW's International New Student Orientation and scheduled information sessions, collect and read written materials, and meet with an ISO advisor whenever you have a question or problem.

International Students & Student Health Insurance Requirement

Beginning in the fall 2012 semester, all GW international students holding a J1 or F1 visa are required to carry health insurance. If you are an F1 or J1 visa holder, you will automatically be enrolled in Aetna Student Health Insurance plan and the fees will be added to your tuition bill.  If you have comparable coverage and wish to opt out of the plan, you must submit an online waiver form.  To complete the online waiver form, visit the Aetna website.

Waiver decisions are made immediately and you may appeal the decision using the Aetna Student Health Website.

Learn why it’s important to have health insurance.

Please note that ISO does not:

  • Administer the plans provided to students.

  • Make the final determination with regard to insurance waivers.

  • Provide information on alternative plans.

  • Remove insurance charges from student accounts.

  • Provide advising services with regard to health care, insurance or medical advice.

We hope that this email answers your questions. If you have additional questions or need more information, please contact the Aetna Student Health Customer Service Department: 1- (800) 213-0579.

Please visit the Student Health Services website for information on insurance waivers. This insurance handout is also available for your information.

Western Union GlobalPay 

Western Union Business Solutions is a specialist in global education payments and is authorized to accept payments from students for the benefit of our educational institution clients. Working with GW, GlobalPay for Students offers a convenient and cost effective way to make education payments in local currency.

For more information about Western Union Global Pay and International Payment Options, please refer to the Student Accounts Office- International Payments

Forms, Forms, Forms!

Are you looking for specific forms for applications such as OPT, CPT, or Reduced Course Load? Many important forms are available for download on the Forms & Handouts page. If you do not find the form that you are looking for, please contact or visit the ISO during business hours to pick up a form.