International Students

International Student Information

Penn State is excited to welcome students from across the globe into our community as in-person learning resumes as the primary mode of instruction for the fall 2021 semester. Even if current circumstances prevent residential study, Penn State is committed to helping our international students continue their studies and attain their academic goals from anywhere across the globe. Students who are unable to attend classes in-person because of visa, travel or health-related issues are encouraged to enroll in Penn State’s highly ranked World Campus, where they can continue to advance toward a Penn State degree. Penn State World Campus classes are offered online and accessible to students at any time of day.

International students with academic-related questions or needs are encouraged to talk to their academic adviser and explore the variety of resources available on the University’s Keep Learning website and on Global Programs’ International Students and Scholars page.

Continuing international students with questions or who need support from an international student adviser can get help by:


  • Making an advising appointment (via Zoom or in-person) through Starfish at the following links:

    University Park students
    All other Penn State campuses

    DISSA has created service pages for campuses across the commonwealth that can be accessed by searching from your Success Network in Starfish. When searching for DISSA, be sure to select the campus you currently attend.

  • Visiting iStart.gp.psu.edu and completing the “submit a question” link.

  • Calling +1-814-865-6348 (selecting option #2) to speak to an international student adviser; advisers are busy on the phone so leave a message with your name, PSU ID #, and telephone number.

New international students who do not yet have an I-20 or DS-2019 can reach out to a pre-arrival adviser at international@psu.edu.

Click here for answers to frequently asked questions about fall semester planning, COVID-19 vaccines, and campus health and safety.

International Flags flying at Penn State University

“You are warmly welcome at Penn State, and your talents, knowledge and diverse perspectives help make Penn State a truly special place. We are excited to have you as members of our Penn State family and look forward to helping you cultivate your passions and achieve your academic goals, especially during these challenging times. We are always here to support you and we are committed to meeting your needs, so that you can succeed in your studies and be truly prepared for an exciting and invigorating future.”

— Roger Brindley, vice provost for Global Programs

International Student Travel

For those international students currently studying in residence at a Penn State campus, the University strongly recommends that they remain in the United States at this time, as global travel rules can change rapidly and re-entry into the United States is not guaranteed.

For international students planning to travel outside of the U.S., a travel signature is required to return. International students should complete the “Travel Plans and Signature” signature request online in iStart. An international student adviser will review your request along with your travel plans and contact you if there is a need to review your plans. You may also call 814-865-6348 (option 2) for assistance.

By order of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all air passengers arriving in the United States are required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken not more than three days before travel or documentation of recovery from COVID-19.

All international students traveling to the United States are reminded of the following:


  • Ensure your passport is valid for at least six months from your arrival date into the U.S., you have a valid visa, and I-20 (with travel signature for continuing students).

  • You must know what your airline requires of you to board the plane; some require proof of a recent negative COVID-19 test within two to three days before the departure time.

  • You must know the rules for all countries you will enter or transit through. You may be required to quarantine upon arrival.

  • All air passengers arriving to the U.S. from a foreign country are required to get tested for COVID-19 no more than three days before their flight and provide proof of a negative test. Air passengers also will be required to confirm that the information they present is true in the form of an attestation.

  • Students who have not submitted proof of COVID-19 vaccination will be subject to weekly COVID-19 testing throughout the fall semester.
  • Currently everyone must wear a mask in all Penn State buildings.

  • Students are encouraged to get a COVID-19 vaccine. COVID-19 vaccines are available on campus if the student has not had one. Students who have had COVID-19 or have been vaccinated should speak to a University health provider if seeking a vaccine on campus.

Additional travel information for international students is available here from Penn State Global Programs.

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