International Engagement Global Welcome

Congratulations on being admitted to the University of Central Arkansas! We are excited to have you join us here in Conway, Arkansas. International Engagement provides a Global Welcome at the beginning of each semester for our new students. During this time we will have airport transportation, host families, New Student Check-In, New Student Move-In, New Student Orientation, academic advising, class registration, and additional shopping shuttles and activities. There is a lot of information for new students to know, so please read this full page carefully!

Important Dates:

  • Spring 2018 Global Welcome
    Arrival Dates: January 6-7
    Check-in Date (includes on-campus Move-in): January 7
    New International Student Global Welcome: January 8-10
    Spring Classes Begin: January 11
  • Summer 2018 Global Welcome
    Arrival Dates: May 29-30
    Check-in Date (includes on-campus Move-in): May 30
    New International Student Global Welcome: May 31-June 1
    Spring Classes Begin: June 4
  • Fall 2018 Global Welcome
    Arrival Dates: August 11-12
    Check-in Date (includes on-campus Move-in): August 12
    New International Student Global Welcome: August 13-17
    Welcome Week: August 19-24
    Fall Classes Begin: August 24

Apply for your Visa

Once you have received admission to UCA as an international student, you should apply for a student visa. The process cans seem complicated, so carefully read our Guide to Applying for a Non-Immigrant Visa.

Register for Fall 2017 Global Welcome

After your visa has been approved, please register for the appropriate Global Welcome. Registering for Global Welcome will help us best be able to prepare for your arrival. If you do not yet know an answer to a question asked, or if you need to change an answer, you have the option to edit your registration later.

When buying a plane ticket, you should book your flight ticket to arrive at the Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport (LIT). International Engagement will offer a free shuttle service on the arrival dates listed above, with the last shuttle leaving the airport at 6:00 pm. Students arriving before these dates, or later than 6:00 pm on these dates, will need to make arrangements to stay in a hotel. Students arriving on the first arrival date, before Check-In & Move-in, can request to stay with a host family. You can see more information regarding arrival, hotels, shuttles, and host families here.

Campus Housing

Once your visa is approved and your flight is booked, apply for campus housing. UCA offers in-state tuition for international students who live on campus. Students can choose from several campus halls and apartments, which you can take virtual tours of here.

New students will be able to move into their housing assignments after they check in on Check-In Day. Housing applications are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. While there will be housing options available for all students who arrive, we encourage students to apply for housing now. Please go here for more information about the housing process, and view the UCA housing website if you have more questions.

Please note: Global Welcome requires that new students be here before the semester’s housing contract starts. Because of this, students are charged $15 a night until the housing contract officially begins. These fees will be assessed to students’ accounts, and will be paid alongside the other tuition charges for the semester.

GEP students will not apply for housing or pay a deposit. 

Global Welcome

The main part of each Global Welcome will be the orientation activites for new students. During these activities students will meet other international students, connect to Team Global leaders, take any needed placement tests, register for classes and learn about UCA and Conway, U.S. academics and tips for adjusting to American culture.

Click here to see: Fall 2017 Global Welcome Overview

Global Welcome Objectives

We want international students to begin their UCA career understanding the expectations of academics at UCA and prepared to succeed in the new cultural environment. Students who complete all of orientation will:

  • Connect with new and upperclassmen students
  • Understand their immigration responsibilities
  • Begin immunizations and understand health care options available to them
  • Learn about the academic expectations of UCA students as well as resources for success
  • Take placement tests and register for classes
  • Learn how to respond to cultural differences

Check-In with International Engagement

Check in with International Engagement at 201 Donaghey Ave, McCastlain Hall from 9:00 am – 6:00 pm on the listed Check-In Day. If at all possible, you should plan on checking in on this date. If you are arriving after Check-In day, stop by 8:00 am-4:30  pm Monday-Friday upon your arrival. During the check-in process you will:

  • Meet International Engagement staff and Team Global volunteers
  • Receive your orientation name tag and folder with important information and paperwork. You will need to bring these items to everyday of Orientation
  • Have copies made of your passport, visa, I-20/DS-2019 and I-94

Orientation Activities

During orientation, new students will be divided into teams of 12-15 students based on their student classification. These teams will be led by Team Global leaders. Each team will complete their orientation activities together according to their schedule. We recommend all students complete all activities to have a richer and fuller experience at UCA. Certain activities must be completed before a student can register for classes for the semester. The activities are listed below:

  • Receive MMR immunizations and the T-Spot test. (Required for all students. View more information here.)
  • Take the Accuplacer test (required for first-time freshmen without sufficient ACT or SAT scores)
  • Take the Intensive English Placement test (required for all IEP students)
  • Receive student IDs (required for all new students)
  • Receive an on-campus Post Office Box
  • Learn how to use myUCA and Blackboard
  • Take a campus tour
  • Attend a bank & cell Phone Fair
  • Get to know the services provided by UCA’s Torreyson Library, Center for Writing and Communications, Tutoring Center, and HPER (the campus gym).

Welcome Sessions

The orientation sessions will feature guest speakers from UCA and the community speaking to new student on the most important aspects of adjustment to life at UCA. Sessions will include:

  • How to stay in active F-1 or J-1 immigration status
  • How to use your student insurance
  • How to succeed academically at UCA
  • What services the UCA Police Department offers to students
  • How to get involved at UCA
  • How to adjust to a new culture

Academic Advising

Students will receive academic advising based off their student classification.
First-Time Undergraduate Freshmen and Transfer Students With 30 Credit Hours Or Less will be advised by the UCA advising office in Harrin Hall. They will be given their advising appointment times when they check in. Their team leaders will help them get to their appointments. These students should make sure to read more about the ACT, SAT, and Accuplacer tests here.

Transfer Students With More Than 30 Credit Hours and Post-Baccalaureate Students will be advised by faculty in their degree program. They will be given their advising times and locations when they check in. Their team leaders will help them get to their appointments.

Graduate Students should be in contact with their departments to schedule an advising time before they arrive. Their team leaders will help them get to their appointments.

Intensive English Program Students will be advised by an IEP staff member after they have taken their placement test. Their team leaders will help them get to their appointments.

Evening Activities

Connecting to the community is about much more than sessions and appointments. Evening activities during orientation will also new students to see what’s fun at UCA. From home-cooked meals with community members to soccer games and scavenger hunts, orientation can be fun!

In addition to fun activities, we will have shuttles running to Wal-Mart every night of Global Welcome for people who need to do some shopping.

Make sure to register for the appropriate Global Welcome below so we can be sure to be ready for your arrival!

Fall 2017 Global Welcome Registration (Link for students in China)