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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

As students search for their “best fit” institution and plan for their trip abroad, questions frequently arise. Below are some questions that our students ask when they travel abroad. 
If you have questions that are not answered here, please feel free to send them in an e-mail to exchange@olemiss.edu, and we’ll respond as quickly as possible.

WHEN AND HOW CAN I ENROLL IN THE COURSES I REQUESTED?
You will not be able to register for courses at The University of Mississippi until you are physically on campus. It is a state law that our exchange students must first participate in tuberculosis testing on campus before registering for classes. We have you arrive on campus early several days prior to the start of the semester to begin the tuberculosis testing as early as possible. Though we cannot guarantee that the courses you requested will have remaining seats, we will try our best to get you into courses suitable for your major and academic progress. After you have completed tuberculosis testing, we have you meet with an academic advisor who will help you navigate the course registration process. 

WHAT IS A BED AND BATH PACK?
Prior to your arrival, you can order something called a Bed and Bath Pack. After you have been accepted, there will be a couple of questions in your application portal. One of these questions asks if you would like to purchase a Bed and Bath Pack. If you select yes, the Bed and Bath Pack will be available to you when you arrive on campus. The cost is $35 and it will be charged to your bursar account. The Bed and Bath Pack is NOT only for people who live on campus, but the sheet set size is twin extra long which may not be the size of your bed if you choose to live off campus. The Bed and Bath Pack is $35 and includes one sheet set, one throw blanket, one towel, one washcloth, one pillow, and one roll of toilet paper. 
Linen Pack  
WHY IS ARRIVAL DAY SEVERAL DAYS BEFORE COURSES START?
The fall 2018 semester arrival day is August 12, 2018. If you arrive on August 12th between 8:00am and 10:00pm at the Memphis, Tennessee airport, we will pick you up and transport you to Oxford, Mississippi free of charge. A free shuttle from Memphis International Airport is provided on the Official Arrival Day each semester from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM. If you plan on arriving before August 12th you will need to secure a hotel room at the airport until August 12th or arrange your own transportation to Oxford and stay in a hotel until on-campus housing opens on August 12th. We will arrange our transportation shuttle times based on your flight times that you report in the “post decision” part of your study abroad application portal. Please enter your arrival information no later than July 15, 2018. We have orientation sessions, tuberculosis testing, academic advising sessions, activities, and events planned for you prior to classes starting. We have you arrive early to give you extra time to adjust to Oxford and the Ole Miss campus and give you the best possible outcome for registering for courses.
 
CAN I HAVE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT HOUSING?
*It is important to note that you have the freedom to choose where you would like to live during your exchange semester(s). We have an on campus option as well as several off campus apartment complexes. 
Once you apply for our program, you'll receive communication about the housing application deadlines and how to apply. If you choose the on-campus residence hall option, you are likely to be assigned a roommate who is also an international exchange student. The residence hall coordinator has a lot of fun activities planned for you throughout the semester! If you choose to live off campus, you must make those arrangements on your own. I am not able to sign a lease on your behalf. If you have questions about apartments or have difficulty getting in touch with the leasing office, please let me know. 

There are two main housing options for visiting international students spending a semester or year at the University of Mississippi: on-campus residence hall or off-campus apartments. If you choose to live off campus, you must make these arrangements on your own. 

The three most popular off campus apartment complexes among our international exchange students are The Hub, Campus Creek, and University Trails (soon to be Flatts at South Campus). 

Below are apartment complexes in Oxford that have a short term lease option available for one semester students:
*This information was gathered in Spring of 2017. Please consult the apartment complex for more information.
Campus Creek does a 5 month lease and is located on a bus route.
University Trails will do a 6 month lease and are on a bus line.
The Hub will do a 6 month lease and is located on a bus line. 

Highland Square does a 6 month lease but it will be $100 extra per month and is located on bus line.
The Connection does a 6 month lease and is located on the green line.
Lafayette Place does a 6 month lease and is on the yellow line.
Lexington Pointe does a 6 month lease and is located near a bus route but students have to walk down to it. 
Faulkner Flats occasionally has 6 month leases but it's $100 extra a month and is on bus line.
Cambridge Station occasionally has 6 month leases but its $100 extra each month and is on bus line.

Housing Comparisons:
Written by former international exchange students (Fall 2017)
 
For this comparison, a former student talked to fellow internationals and tried to find advantages and disadvantages for each housing option. Please note that most of our students are spread across four options: On-Campus (Residence Hall 3), The Hub, Campus Creek, and University Trails (soon to be “Flatts at South Campus”).
 
On-Campus (Residence Hall 3): 291 Rebel Drive, University, Mississippi 38677
+ Central location
+ Walking distance to everything you need
+ Gym on campus (open for every student with your student ID)
+ Miscellaneous spare time activities occur in the residence hall
+ Every floor has a lounge with a TV and cable
+ Wifi is available in the residence hall
+ Good organization from staff
+ One of the newest residence halls on campus
+ Water and electricity are included (do not have to pay an additional bill)
- Shared room and bathroom (with one other person)
- No alcohol in the building
- Shared Kitchen (every room has its own microwave and fridge)
- Need to pay every time you use the washing machine ($1.50 per wash/dry)
- Relatively expensive ($3,040 per semester)
- No Pool at the residence hall
- No visitors after 2:00am
- Cannot receive mail at the residence hall, you have to purchase a mailbox at campus mail  
- No dishes, or blanket are included when you arrive
 
The Hub: 109 Anchorage Rd, Oxford, MS 38655
+ Modern, really nice apartments
+ Really great pool area, inclusive beach volleyball court, hot tubs, sauna, TV at the pool, soda included
+ Free shuttle back from The Square (the central part of town) starting Thursdays and continuing through the weekend
+ Very modern Gym
+ Miscellaneous spare time activities and events occur at the complex
+ A lot of Americans live here
+ TV and router are included in the apartments
- Whole complex is a little far off from the central part of town
- Might be a little too far for taking a bike to campus
- Most expensive location
- Electricity bill costs extra each month (must set up your electricity account)
- No dishes, or blanket are included when you arrive
 
Campus Creek: 101 Creekmore Blvd, Oxford, MS 38655
+ Nice neat apartments, not as modern as The Hub, but more modern than University Trails
+ Pool area is nicer than University Trails, but not as good as The Hub
+ Bike distance to campus (5-10 minutes) and most sport stadiums (volleyball, soccer right around the corner)
+ Very good bus connection
+ Gated Community
+ Uber to the Square approx. 5-10 minutes, about $8 - $10 USD
+ WLAN router for wifi is included
+ Near Jackson Avenue (Walmart, miscellaneous shops and restaurants)
+ Good Gym
+ From time to time they have events going on in the complex
+ A lot of Americans live here
+ Beach volleyball court, Tennis court are on site
- More expensive than University Trails
- Maintenances crew is sometimes really slow to fix issues
- No Square Shuttle is offered
- TV is not included
- No dishes, or blanket are included when you arrive
 
University Trails (soon to be) Flatts at South Campus:
+ Cheapest Complex of these that are listed
+ Bike distance to campus and most sport stadiums (5-10 minutes)
+ Uber to the Square approx. 5 minutes, $7 - $9 USD
+ Pool with a nice sitting area and a barbecue pit
+ As long as you don’t have a problem in your apartment, the cost-benefit ratio is good
+ TV is included
+ A lot of international students live here
+ There is an outdoor basketball court
- Chaotic management, sometimes slow to get back to you
- Renovations will be occurring until 2019
- Some apartments were dirty on the move in date
- No Square Shuttle is offered
- Beach volleyball court is almost not useable because of only 5cm of sand on top of concrete
- Gym is poorly equipped
- WLAN router for wifi is not included
-No dishes, or blanket are included when you arrive
 
CAN I HAVE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT HEALTH INSURANCE?
All incoming exchange students (except for ISEP) are required to purchase health insurance. In order to register for courses, students must present a proof of MMR vaccinations before arrival. All international students are required to complete mandatory tuberculosis testing upon arrival. The international student advisor will schedule your health center visit. When you arrive, you will receive a folder with important information including your health center appointment time. Our exchange students must first participate in tuberculosis testing before registering for classes. We complete tuberculosis testing during welcome week in an effort you have you registered for courses as early as possible. After you have completed tuberculosis testing, we have you meet with an academic advisor who will help you navigate the course registration process. This is all arranged for you before you arrive on campus. 

The university health insurance is provided by a company called Aetna. We automatically enroll our international exchange students in the Aetna insurance program unless their university has filled out an insurance exemption request. The insurance exemption request must be filled out by your home university. All students from the same university must have the same insurance for the waiver to be accepted. The health insurance must meet the federal requirements of the J-1 visa. The health insurance must be submitted at least 30 days prior to the semester for which the waiver is being requested. Click here for a link to the Aetna insurance website and will give you more information about coverage. There is also this video about insurance coverage for International Students. It gives you some information about what health insurance is for and how it works in the United States.
 
DO I NEED TO REGISTER FOR ORIENTATION?
As an international exchange student, you do not need to register for orientation. We will plan an orientation program for you as exchange students. When you arrive at Ole Miss, we will have welcome folders with information about Oxford and Ole Miss as well as an orientation folder. The orientation folder will have the dates, times, and locations of all orientation activities. That folder will also have your health center appointment for the tuberculosis testing and your academic advising session appointment. Please be aware that someone has arranged these appointments for you and you are expected to be present for these appointments. You are automatically included in the orientation session and we very much look forward to introducing you to all things Ole Miss!
 
I HAVE QUESTIONS. WHO SHOULD I EMAIL?
I am happy to answer all questions related to your exchange semester or year here at the University of Mississippi. I will be here when you arrive and am always open to chat and answer questions. If I do not know the answer to something, I would be happy to find out the answer or put you in contact with the appropriate person. Please email exchange@olemiss.edu for all of your questions. 
 
HOW CAN I GET FOOTBALL TICKETS?
You will not be able to purchase student football tickets until you have registered for classes. Course registration will happen during welcome week/orientation. Season tickets are usually sold out in the middle of the summer. The Ole Miss Football team recently had some consequences for NCAA violations. The consequence is that the Ole Miss Football team cannot go to a bowl game at the end of the season. This "bowl ban" has caused a decline in student football ticket purchases. Last fall (2017), our international exchange students had no trouble purchasing student season tickets. We are hopeful that tickets will be available for you to purchase when you arrive since we still have a "bowl ban" this year. If the tickets do sell out, for each football game, there are always students who wish to sell their individual ticket because they cannot make it to the game. It is quite easy for a ticket to be transferred to you. There are a couple of ways for you to buy tickets from students. There is a Facebook group for students who are buying or selling tickets (“OLE MISS FOOTBALL TICKETS 4-SALE OR TRADE”). There are Ole Miss students who have a special interest in learning about your culture and introducing you to life in Oxford. These students are members of the “global ambassador program.” When you arrive, you will meet your global ambassador during welcome/orientation week. Your global ambassador may be able to help you with your quest for football tickets as they are well connected on campus. The Ole Miss football experience is incredible. Even without a football ticket, students are permitted to enjoy tailgating in The Grove. We will even have a tailgating event just for you to experience a Saturday in The Grove.
 
WHEN WILL I HAVE TO PAY MY BURSAR ACCOUNT?
Your bursar account is where all of your university related charges will be. Your bursar account is where your specific charges are, where you accept your scholarship(s), and where you pay your account. This keeps it all in one online place. There is also a "bursar's office" at Ole Miss if you prefer to talk to someone or see a hard copy of your account. You do not need to understand the bursar account before you arrive. I will help you understand it when you arrive. 
You will not pay your bursar account until after you arrive on campus, but should plan to make your payment before September 15, 2018. During orientation, we will go over the scholarships and billing information. Please do not make payments on your account until we have covered that orientation session. You can pay your account online through your MyOleMiss portal by using an American Visa or Mastercard (Convenience Fee of 2.75%). You can also pay online through FlyWire with your credit card or with your bank routing number and account number. You can also make cash payments at the Bursar’s Office (2nd Floor Martindale Student Services Center) using cash, check, or money order. You should familiarize yourself with your personal bank's policies in preparation for your semester(s) abroad. Some students are not able to make large payments in one transaction. Plan ahead and schedule your payments if needed. But, again, please do not make a payment until we have had the orientation session about scholarships and billing.
 
HOW CAN I ACCESS MY OLE MISS EMAIL?
Your Ole Miss email address is listed on your expected cost sheet that is sent with your acceptance packet. It is called your WebID and when used as your email, it looks something like hjuliff@go.olemiss.edu. Your password will be the same for your email, MyOleMiss, and Blackboard (used during classes…we will talk about this during orientation). Every couple of months, you will need to reset your password for security purposes. Your Ole Miss email can be accessed at www.gmail.com and you enter your full email address and password. You can access your MyOleMiss account (where final grades are posted, scholarships and billing are posted, classes are registered for, and more!) by going to www.my.olemiss.edu and using your WebID and password. You wouldn’t enter the “@go.olemiss.edu” for this username.
 
DO I NEED TO UPLOAD MY MEDICAL DOCUMENTS?
If you have not already, please upload your medical documents to the study abroad application portal before July 15, 2018. 

WHAT WILL WE DO DURING WELCOME WEEK?
During welcome week, we will provide you with a plethora of fun activities. When you arrive, you will receive a folder with important information including your health center appointment time, the semester activities, campus map, academic advising appointment, and so much more! In addition, we will have orientation sessions, tuberculosis testing, academic advising sessions, and events planned for you prior to classes starting.

CAN I TAKE INTENSIVE ENGLISH CLASSES WHILE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSISSIPPI?
Absolutely! Intensive English language courses are offered to exchange students. Students who do not have a sufficiently high level of English proficiency may enroll full time in the Intensive Language Program. Courses are offered to exchange students at the Advanced and Advanced Plus level, and the schedule corresponds with the University’s academic calendar. Students may enroll concurrently in Intensive English and academic courses. Intensive English courses are credit bearing and will count towards your total credits of enrollment. For more information on language courses, check out the Intensive English Program. Registration of these course will occur during Welcome Week.

HOW MUCH MONEY SHOULD I BUDGET FOR MY TIME AT THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSISSIPPI?
Depending on the agreement between your university and the University of Mississippi, you may be responsible for all of your personal expenses including: housing, meals, books, local transportation, special class fees, and personal entertainment or spending money. A document titled "Expected Costs" is included in your Admissions Packet and Orientation Folder for your reference and explains what fees you should be prepared to pay while at UM. This document is not a bill, but gives you an idea of the costs you will need to pay. Depending on personal spending habits, your monetary needs will vary. 
 
HOW MANY CREDIT HOURS DO I NEED TO TAKE AND HOW ARE THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSISSIPPI CLASSES SET UP?
While your home institution sets the policy regarding the award of credit for coursework completed on an exchange you will need to enroll in a minimum of 12 course credits each semester (6 course credits each summer term). You are responsible for knowing your home institution’s policies and procedures regarding course requirements. At the University of Mississippi, students are issued a syllabus at the beginning of each course. The final grade for the course is based on class participation and attendance, daily assignments, tests, papers, class presentations, and examinations. The weight of each task and how it is incorporated into the final overall grade is at the discretion of the professor. All classes are required to hold a final exam, whether it be an in-class test or a paper due during exam week. More information on course offerings and requirements can be found on the Academic Information page.

HOW DO I GET MY FINAL TRANSCRIPT SENT TO MY UNIVERSITY?
Students studying in the fall semester should expect their UM transcript to arrive at their home university in February. Spring semester and full-year students should expect their UM transcripts in late June. Official transcripts will be sent to your home institution only if all holds on the student account have been removed and your UM Bursar Account shows a zero balance. Students who would like an additional transcript may purchase one through their MyOleMiss account.