International Student Orientation

Welcome to George Mason University
! The International Student Orientation process is designed to help transition new undergraduate international students to the institution and expose them to the broad educational opportunities at George Mason University.   

The International Student Orientation process is mandatory. The program is comprised of 2 events: (1) Virtual Advising & Registration Session during the summer and (2) an on-campus one-day Orientation session in August. All specific information surrounding the Orientation experience, gaining access to systems, and instructions on how to navigate those systems will be sent to students directly via your GMU e-mail upon registering for your sessions.

If you are a part of the China 1-2-1, Global Exchange, Mason Korea, or INTO Mason program, you will receive Orientation information directly from your respective program as it will be different from the process highlighted below. 

Below is an overview of the International Student Orientation experience with general information about each component.

Step 1: Start Your Pre-Orientation Checklist
  • It will be important to complete items on the Pre-Orientation Checklist (as needed) to ensure a successful transition experience at Mason and prepare you for your on-campus Orientation program. 
    • The Pre-Orientation Checklist tells you how to set-up your Mason accounts and register for Orientation! 
  • Upon registering for Orientation, key items include but are not limited to: 
  • Completing Pre-Orientation Virtual Content called “Patriot Preview”
  • Submitting Final Transcripts 
  • Completing Immunization Paperwork 
  • Taking Placement Tests (as needed based on your major) 
Step 2: Complete Virtual Pre-Orientation Presentations
  • Complete Patriot Preview “Before Orientation” module, prior to either of your session dates. You will need your Mason Net ID and password (Patriot Pass login information you used to create your email) to gain access. 
Step 3: Attend Virtual & On-Campus Orientation Sessions
  • When registering for Orientation, you will select 2 events: (1) a Virtual Advising & Registration Session during the summer and (2) an On-Campus One-Day Orientation Session in August.
  • You will receive a confirmation email for EACH session you register for and you are REQUIRED to attend both sessions.  
  • Virtual Advising & Registration will focus on learning about your academic college and opportunities, receiving academic advising, and registering for your classes. 
  • On-Campus Orientation will be on Tuesday, August 15, 2023. The day will focus on building relationships with peers, interacting with key campus resources, learning campus traditions, and more. It will begin at 9:00am and run until approximately 5:00pm.
Step 4: Attend Mandatory Immigration & Compliance Meeting
  • Just before the beginning of the semester, students will receive another e-mail from the Office of International Programs and Services (OIPS) with information about a MANDATORY Immigration and Compliance Meeting that they will provide to incoming F-1 international students. 
  • This is a live, virtual Zoom meeting and will take place on Monday, August 7, 2023 from 9:30–11:00am ET. Please hold this day and time.
Other Important Opportunities & Resources
  • Be sure to check out International Programs and Services for resources and events catered to international students.
  • The Preamble occurs every fall semester and is a series of events leading up to the first day of classes that help students prepare for the semester. Some sessions are mandatory and others are optional. The schedule will become available as the semester approaches, but until then, you can see an example schedule at This program does not occur in the Spring semester, only Fall.
  • Welcome2Mason are the weeks following the start of the semester and consists of optional programs and events for all students that they can pick based on their personal interests. These university and student organization-led events give students the opportunity to learn how to get more involved on-campus and build connections with other Mason students. More information about event can be found at This occurs twice a year to welcome students in both Fall and Spring semesters.
  • Check out the 2023–2024 New Student Guide for comprehensive information about the university and new student resources!
  • Download Mason360 – a must-have app to know what’s happening around campus, where students can find other Patriots with similar interests, and have quick access to important resources that help students navigate their time at Mason.
  • Connect with us on social media using #Welcome2Mason and follow our Instagram (@MasonNSFP) and Facebook (New Student and Family Programs)! We will be sharing useful tips about Mason and a student’s first year!
  • For families, New Student and Family Programs has curated a Family Orientation website that provides mirrored information of student content, but from a family lens. To learn more, visit the “Family Members” menu at the top of this page.
Orientation Checklists

Specific Checklist for International F-1 Visa Holders.

For a full list of items to complete before Orientation, Pre-Orientation Checklist.

For a full list of items to complete before the semester begins, Post-Orientation/Pre-Semester Checklist.

Need Assistance?

For questions about international student tasks and servicescontact the Office of International Programs and Services by e-mailing or calling 703-993-2970. 

For orientation-specific questions, contact New Student and Family Programs by e-mailing or calling 703-993-2475.