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International Students

International Services Office

The International Services Office provides assistance to international students, scholars, and faculty in meeting United States Immigration and Naturalization Service regulations dealing with such matters as maintaining lawful status, extensions of stay, transfers of schools/programs, and working authorizations. The Office also provides a formal orientation to the campus and community for new international students and visiting faculty; advice and counsel for educational, financial, and personal problems; and dissemination of important and timely information through newsletters and workshops. The Office is located in 459 Schmitz, (206) 543-0841, or at

English Language Programs (ELP)

The UW English Language Program (ELP) offers a wide variety of courses for students who want to improve their English skills. The Academic English Program (AEP) offers courses in grammar, vocabulary, lecture listening, and academic writing. These courses are designed for matriculated graduate and undergraduate students at the University. The AEP also offers a course to prepare international graduate students to be teaching assistants at the UW.

The Intensive English Program (IEP) offers six levels of instruction from beginner to advanced with courses in grammar, reading, writing, and listening along with elective courses in conversation, pronunciation, TOEFL preparation, and vocabulary. These non-credit courses are designed for non-matriculated students, but are open to anyone.

International Programs and Exchanges (IPE)

International Programs and Exchanges administers and cooperates in more than 50 international-study programs. Qualified undergraduate and graduate students are enrolled concurrently at the University and abroad, earning UW credit and maintaining residency and financial aid eligibility. Quarter-, semester-, and academic-year programs are offered.

Foundation for International Understanding Through Students (FIUTS)

The Foundation for International Understanding Through Students (FIUTS) is a community-based organization on the UW campus whose mission is to provide social support services for non-ESL UW international students and to link them with the greater Puget Sound community. FIUTS coordinates short-term homestays, the international student orientation, trips and tours, educational outreach programs, and cultural workshops.

Insurance for Foreign Students

All students from foreign countries are required to have a health-and-accident insurance policy in force while registered at the University. This may be achieved by purchasing either the student accident and sickness insurance offered through the University or other coverage, proof of which must be furnished to the International Services Office and for which an insurance waiver must be obtained. To avoid cancellation of registration, international students must pay tuition and either pay for the University-sponsored insurance or have a waiver on file by the tuition due date.

Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP and SHIP-Plus)

An accident and sickness insurance plan is available to matriculated University students (Seattle campus) and dependents on a voluntary basis. A student may enroll in the plan at the time of registration each quarter. The appropriate premium must be paid by the quarterly tuition due date. Brochures describing the insurance eligibility, coverage, and costs are available at the Student Insurance Office, 459 Schmitz, (206) 543-6202; Hall Health Primary Care Center; and the HUB.

The University also sponsors a field-trip accident insurance plan. Application forms may be requested from the Risk Management Office, 22 Gerberding, Box 351276, (206) 543-3419.