International Student Services


Frequently Asked Questions & Answers


When will I meet my academic advisor and register for classes?

Most students will meet your academic advisor and register for classes at Orientation. Exchange students will be contacted by the Academic Advising Office to confirm your schedule.

Will I be able to choose my own classes/How does scheduling work?

You will be able to meet with your Academic Advisor during Orientation to finalize your course/class schedule.

How many credits do I need to take?

·       Undergraduate students must register for at least 12 credit hours per semester.

·       Graduate students must register for at least 6 credit hours per semester.

·       Otherwise you will be out of status. It is your responsibility to maintain a good student status so that you are eligible for an F-1 student's benefits.

How many classes should I register for each semester?

As an F-1 student, you HAVE to be a full time student in order to maintain your F-1 student status.


Will the school help me to adjust to the new environment?

Yes. We offer Orientation to all the international students to help you get familiar with the new environment, culture, and education system. International Student Ambassadors, the Learning Center, the Counseling Center, and a fully-dedicated staff, which will assist you in adjusting to Baldwin Wallace University and American way of life. Due to the importance of Orientation, it is mandatory for all new students to attend.

What is the best way to meet American people and make new friends?

The best way is to get involved in campus life. You have to take the initiative and reach out. You will make a lot more friends if you reach out, than if you wait for others to come to you. Join a club that interests you; Baldwin Wallace's Office of Student Life offers over 100 clubs and organizations. Volunteering in the community is also a great way to meet people and learn about civic engagement.

How can I improve my English?

Try to speak English as much as possible.You can also register to take ESL 101 Speaking/Listening and ESL 102 Advance Grammar classes for 3 credits each.  All students with a TOEFL score below 523 are required to take both courses. We also encourage you to make American friends, get involved on campus, join a club, and go to campus events like Global Friends Hour.

Bill Payment

When should I pay my bill?

After you register for classes, you should receive a bill from the college in about two weeks or so, which will explain when the bill is due and how much you should pay. The DUE DATE is the date you have to pay your bill in full, or you will have an extra financial charge. You can also choose where you want to have the bill sent—to you or your parents.

Where should I pay my bill?

Pay your bill at the Cashier's Office in the Bonds Administration Building.


Can I work on campus?

Yes. As an F-1 student, you are allowed to work a maximum of 20 hours per week on campus while school is in session. International students are not permitted to work off-campus without authorization.

If you would like to work on-campus, you need to first get a bank account (PNC preferably as they are closest to campus and have an ATM on-campus) then you need to go to the Student Employment Center (on the second floor of Bonds). Once you find a job and are hired, you come to the International Office to get a letter confirming your attendance and address at Baldwin Wallace. You will then go to get your Social Security Number.

Are there limits to how much I can work on-campus?

You can work up to 20 hours.


Does my insurance plan cover dental?


 What are my options if I get sick?

Health Serivces, located on campus, is the best place for you to go if you become ill. Please visit their webpage for hours of operation. In the case of an emergency, there is a local hospital 0.5 miles away--Southwest General Hospital.

Where can I go to workout or stay in shape?

The Lou Higgins Recreation Center is the place to go if you want to improve physical fitness, stay well, socialize, and enjoy leisure time. The center features a fitness center, dance studio, volleyball, racquetball courts, indoor batting cage, weight room, basketball, badminton courts, swimming pool, and a second-floor computer lab. Access to all of the facilities is FREE to all Baldwin Wallace students.

Group Fitness classes are offered on a first come, first serve basis. These classes are free, and many of them are beginner friendly. Please see the full list of classes available with descriptions.


What are my housing options?

All undergraduate students are required to live on campus in the residence halls. To see what the residence halls are like, visit Baldwin Wallace's Residence Life page.

Is there a meal plan?

Yes, all undergraduate students are required to have a meal plan.

Will I have the option to live with a domestic or international student?

We do our very best to place you in a room with a U.S. student. 

Can I get into my room if I arrive before Orientation?

Yes. The International Student Services Office will have the keys for you. After the ambassadors pick you up at the airport, they will take you to your residence hall.

Important Document(s)

If I have immigration questions whom do I talk to?

If you have any immigration questions, you should contact Lurline Brotherson in ISS at (440) 826-2134 or email

I have lost some immigration papers, what should I do?

You need to come to ISS RIGHT AWAY! We will need to help you with replacing these documents.

How do I get a Social Security Number?

Students that wish to apply for a Social Security Number (students who wish to work on-campus need to have one) need to contact the ISS Office and make an appointment to go to the Social Security Office in Middleburg Heights. You will need to bring your I 20, your VISA, your I-94, and a letter from the college that states that you are studying at Baldwin Wallace University. Once you apply for your Social Security Number, it will take about 2-4 weeks to arrive in your residence hall. Once you have your Social Security Number you need to bring it to the Employment Office and the International Student Services Office (ISS), so that you can be paid.

How do I apply for OPT?

You need to come to the ISS Office to learn more about the process.

I have moved, who should I notify?

If you move, you must come to the ISS Office in Bonds and let ISS know about your move as well as the Registrar and Post Office which is located in Bonds as well.


How do I get around the Berea and Cleveland area?
Please visit the Getting Around Berea link in the left hand column. 

What are the top 5 things to do in Cleveland?

1.    Catch a Game

a.     Football (American)—Cleveland Browns

b.    Basketball—Cleveland Cavaliers

c.     Baseball—Cleveland Indians

d.    Hockey—Lake Erie Monsters

2.    Explore Cleveland Highlights

a.     Gateway District (E. 4th St. dining)

b.    University Circle/Uptown (arts, culture, cuisine)

c.     Coventry Village (boutique shopping, dining)

d.    Public Square (Tower City, dining, historic sites)

e.    Little Italy (festivals, dining, Cleveland Botanical Garden)

f.      Edgewater Park (Lake Erie park)

3.    Visual/Performing Arts

a.     Playhouse Square—plays, musicals, comedies, concerts, orchestras, ballet

                                                                          i.     Second largest theater district in the US!

                                                                         ii.     Student prices for world-class shows

b.    Cleveland International Film Festival

c.     House of Blues

4.    Visit a Museum

a.     Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame

b.    Great Lakes Science Center

c.     Cleveland’s Museum of Natural History

d.    Cleveland Museum of Art

5.    Cleveland’s 17 Nature Reservations, including:

a.     National Parks in Cuyahoga Falls

b.    The Emerald Necklace”—Cleveland’s MetroPark System

c.     Big Creek, Mill Stream Run, Rocky River (all in Berea)

What are the top 5 Day Trips?

1.    Cedar Point/Sandusky

2.    Amish Country

3.    Columbus

4.    Akron/Canton

5.    National Parks

What are the top 5 Weekend Trips?

1.    New York

2.    Chicago

3.    Washington D.C.

4.    Niagara Falls (Canada)

5.    Pittsburgh


What is the weather like in Cleveland, Ohio Area?

It can be very hot in summer (around 80ْ F) and very cold in winter (around 15ْ F), though temperatures generally stay between 40ْ F - 65 ْ F in spring and fall, so please bring clothing appropriate for four seasons (heavy coat, gloves, scarves, umbrellas, water-proof shoes, etc.). Snow, rain, wind, and warm weather are common in both Spring and Fall semesters.

Should I buy a cell phone before or after I arrive?

Student's who do not have a SSN can obtain a prepaid phone, which is a cell phone that comes with minutes already on it. Basically, you pay for minutes as you. There is no bond or deposit required.

SIM cards are not widely used in the U.S., but there are a few providers that offer them such as T-Mobile.

During orientation, we will take you to get a phone if you would like one. The Trac-Fone is the most affordable cell phone with prepaid minutes for domestic and international calls. There are no calling plans or bills with TracFone either.

I have moved, who should I notify?

If you move, you must come to the ISS Office in Bonds and let ISS know about your move as well as the Registrar and Post Office which is located in Bonds as well.

Should I bring at least one traditional dress?

Yes. We have cultural events each semester and we ask every student to wear their traditional dress, if they have one, for these events.





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