Section 1 – Before You Leave


Plymouth State University has different offices that provide services to international students, but each office works together to provide you with assistance and advice. We are here to:

  • Plan and organize the orientation for new international students;
  • Issue and review F-1 visa-related documents to international students (act as Designated School Officials-DSO);
  • Advise international students on matters related to their U.S. immigration status and the regulations regarding employment in the U.S., social security and taxation;
  • Help international students with issues of cultural adjustment and offer information regarding the university, the greater Plymouth community

We are happy to help you and welcome communication from you at any time.

Applying for Visa

Detailed and up-to-date information about the student visa application process, regulations, fees and procedures can be found on the United States Department of State Web site. We recommend checking the U.S. Dept of State site regularly to stay current on all information.

Maintaining F-1 Visa Status

  • Enroll in a full course of study (full-time) at the beginning of every session (excluding authorized break periods/vacations)
  • Consult with DSO before dropping below a full course of study for any reason
  • Report address changes to DSO within 10 days of the change
  • Report any change in sources of financial support to DSO
  • Seek the approval of the DSO and USCIS before engaging in employment or practical training.  Work no more than 20 hours on campus per week
  • Report any changes in program of study to DSO
  • Report any change in academic status to DSO
  • Notify DSO prior to traveling outside the United States
  • Notify DSO upon applying for change of nonimmigration status
  • Notify DSO upon approval of an adjustment of status to an immigrant
  • Consult with DSO to extend their program
  • Notify DSO if they intend to transfer
  • Notify DSO about changes in dependent status
  • It is YOUR responsibility to ensure that all of your documents are valid, current and are kept in a safe place


  • Inform the International Student Services (ISS) office of your expected date of arrival
  • Confirm your housing arrangements with Residential Life
  • Make arrangements to get from the airport to PSU. Call the ISS office for assistance if necessary.
  • Collect any prescriptions
  • Have necessary documents to apply for a NH driver’s license, if desired

We wish to remind you that because of heightened airport security, you may be asked to produce your immigration and identification documents many times during your journey. Please be aware that all travelers, not just non-U.S. citizens, are subject to this scrutiny. It is important that you follow the instructions of airport security and airline personnel. We want you to have a safe trip and to arrive safely in Plymouth!


The International Student Services Team hosts orientation for international students shortly before classes begin. There is an administrative fee that is charged to your student account.  Orientation is mandatory for incoming students.The purpose of the International Student Orientation is to introduce you to the PSU campus, resources, systems and activities; introduce you to the surrounding community; provide an opportunity to meet other new students; help you get situated upon your arrival with your housing, meal plan, university IDs and registration; provide information about employment on campus, driving in NH, cultural and environmental differences and expectations; and most importantly, review all U.S. government immigration requirements and how you must maintain legal status while in the United States.


Please note that Plymouth State University is located in Plymouth, New Hampshire, NOT in Massachusetts.

Transportation from Boston’s Logan Airport is provided through Concord Trailways. Buses stop in Plymouth approximately twice each day. Additionally, local transport services, Lakes Region Airport Shuttle  and Mountain View Shuttle provide major airport pick ups.

Cars are permitted on campus and parking permits are available through the Permit Store Web site.  If you intend to have a car on campus, you must purchase a parking permit BEFORE arriving to PSU.

Visit the Driving section for more information on operating a motor vehicle.