The University of New Mexico
The exchange advisor at your home university must nominate you to attend UNM before you submit an application. Please contact your home university's international office for details of how to obtain a nomination.
Step Two: Required Application Documents
The following documents will be required as part of our online application form. Please gather the documents prior to starting your application.
Personal and Family Savings
Bank statement or letter from a bank verifying liquid assets/cash. Please note that investment portfolios, credit card monthly reports, mortgage appraisals, and similar statements are not acceptable. In addition, please note that if you will be using your parents or a sponsor bank statement you will need to provide an additional letter signed by the owner of the account, where she or he indicates that they will support you during you studies at UNM.
Official scholarship award letter from the institution awarding the scholarship. The letter must contain (1) Name of the applicant, (2) Amount of money available for each semester or academic year of study and, (3) Duration of the award.
Official letter indicating amount of support and containing the same information as described above for scholarship.
Official letter from a credit institution indicating approval of the loan and the amount approved
Once you have been nominated and gathered all your documents, your education abroad advisor at your home institution will send you the link to our online application where you will submit all the required documentation.
Please see all visa requirements for J1 scholars here: http://geo.unm.edu/students/coming_unm/undergraduate_degree/legal_requirements.html
1. Visa Requirements
If you are currently outside the U.S., you should use the DS-2019 form to apply for a J-1 student visa at the United States Embassy or Consulate nearest your place of residence only after you are sure you will attend UNM. If you have already applied for a visa using another school’s form, and you want to attend UNM, you will need to return to the consulate and apply for a new visa that has UNM listed as the school you will attend. Canadian citizens do not require a visa, but must present this form when entering the US from Canada and must pay the SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) fee before arriving (see below). Non-citizen residents of Canada should check with the US Consulate to find out whether or not they need a visa. For information on the U.S. Embassy or Consulate(s) nearest you, please see: http://www.usembassy.gov/.
2. Required SEVIS Fee
All students must pay a mandatory SEVIS fee. This is a U.S. Government fee, not a university fee, and is in addition to any visa fee. Because the payment of the fee will be recorded in the SEVIS system and it MUST be fully processed before you arrive at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate for the visa interview, you must pay it at least 3 business days prior to the visa interview, and you must bring proof of payment to the interview. Canadian citizens must present proof of payment of the fee when arriving at the port of entry to the U.S. (they do NOT need a visa). For more detailed information on the fee payment process please go to the SEVIS website at: https://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901. You can pay the SEVIS fee in one of three ways:
a) Online at www.FMJfee.com Use a credit card and complete the online Form I-901. Once you have submitted the payment please print the computer-generated receipt. This receipt will be your proof of payment. Please note that SEVP is unable to accept credit card payments on behalf of students from Ghana, Gambia, Nigeria, Cameroon or Kenya.
b) Through Western Union Quick Pay. This option is available in any country where Western Union offers its Quick Pay service. This service allows you to pay the SEVIS fee electronically and directly to the Department of Homeland Security in local currency. You must fill out the I-901 form on https://fmjfee.com/i901fee/desktop/index.jsp?view=desktop before you go to Western Union and record or print the unique coupon number to submit your payment (if someone will pay for you they will also need to enter your coupon number in the Account Number field of the Western Union form to pay). To read the detailed instructions for this form of payment, please go to https://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901/wu-instructions.
c) Through the mail by submitting a completed Form I-901 and a check or money order drawn from a U.S. bank. The mailing address and instructions can be found at: https://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901/faq#_Toc81222043 The payment confirmation you can print from the FMJ fee website will serve as proof of payment for the I-901 SEVIS fee.
3. When to Apply for the Visa and What to Bring to the Consulate
You cannot apply for the visa more than 120 days prior to the date your U.S. program begins (check your DS-2019 for the program start date). Documents you will need to bring with you to the U.S. Consulate and to the U.S.:
Please contact the U.S. Consulate before you go to find out how to make an appointment, what the fees are, what additional documents you should bring to the interview, and how long it generally takes to process the visa. A list of U.S. Embassy/Consulate websites can be found at www.usembassy.gov.
4. The Visa Interview
If you will have an interview at a U.S. Consulate, GEO recommends the following:
5. How Soon Can I Legally Arrive in the U.S.?
New students CANNOT arrive more than 30 days prior to the reporting date listed on the DS-2019 form. Be sure that you do not arrive earlier than that date or you may be sent back to your home country.
6. What You Need to Enter the U.S.
You should bring the following with you to enter the U.S. (do not pack these documents in your luggage!):
According to U.S. law, you must enter the U.S. using the DS-2019 from the institution you plan to attend first. If you enter the United States with a form from a university other than the University of New Mexico you will be required to report to and possibly attend that university before you will be eligible to transfer to UNM. Upon your arrival in the U.S. the official should review the form and return it to you.
At the U.S. port of entry, an official should stamp your passport and indicate the correct immigration status (J1) on the stamp. DO NOT ENTER THE U.S. on a B visitor’s visa or WB/WT visa waiver or you will be ineligible to study!!! Once you are able, you will need to print out the record of entry (form I-94) at cbp.gov/I94 and bring a copy to the GEO check-in. The I-94 is an important document that records your current U.S. immigration status.
7. Special Information For Canadian Citizens
Citizens of Canada do not require entry visas, but must present the DS-2019 form, financial proof, and proof of payment of the SEVIS fee when entering the U.S. from Canada. Passports are required for all Canadian citizens entering the U.S. in student status. Students who are receiving assistantships or plan to work on campus must have a valid passport. Canadian students crossing at a land port need to be sure that their DS-2019 is reviewed by the immigration official AND need to carefully check that the stamp in the passport accurately indicates their J-1 status.
1. When to Arrive
The date you arrive is CRITICAL for a smooth transition to student life! If you are outside the U.S., you cannot arrive more than 30 days before the start date listed on your DS-2019 form. You must plan to arrive in Albuquerque by January 8th at the latest. Here is an “ideal” arrival schedule:
January 3rd-4th: If you will live off campus, arrive in Albuquerque to find housing
January 10th: If you will live on campus, move in to campus housing (if you arrive earlier, register for early move-in by following instructions below)
January 8th or 9th: Attend one new student check-in/information session at 9:30 am beginning at GEO, 2120 Mesa Vista Hall (building #56), settle in to housing, finalize class schedule
January 10th: Attend MANDATORY international orientation from 8:30am – 3:30pm
January 11th – 13th: Settle in and participate in fun welcome events
January 14th: Begin classes
2. Where to Stay Until You Can Move into Permanent Housing
Students who will live in UNM campus housing (not Casas del Rio or Lobo Village) can move into their room early for a fee of $30 per night. Early move-in does not begin until Tuesday,January 8th. To request early move-in, students must sign a 2018-2019 academic year housing contract with UNM and submit a request for early arrival to UNM Residence Life and Student Housing . You will receive a confirmation of your arrival request along with instructions on where to check into housing. You will not be able to move in early unless you register in advance! Please note that the dining hall will not open until Tuesday, January 8th. However, there are many dining options near campus. If you have any questions, contact UNM Residence Life and Student Housing at firstname.lastname@example.org or 505-277-2606. If you don’t submit a request for early arrival, you can’t move-in to campus housing until Tuesday, January 8th.
3. Airport Pick-Up and Temporary Home-Stay
UNM student groups will sometimes provide airport pick-up and/or temporary home-stays for new students. You can contact students from your home country through one of the country/culture group representatives on the UNM Student Activities website at http://sac.unm.edu/index.html to see if this service is being offered by a group from your country.
Offered by ISI (Local Community Christian Organization – NOT UNM)
A non-UNM, community Christian volunteer organization called ISI (International Students, Inc.) offers free airport pick-up and a temporary home-stay with a local family not to exceed 3 days. ISI is a Christian Organization, but there is no obligation to participate in any religious activities. If you are interested in airport pick-up or the home-stay opportunity offered by ISI please contact them at: ISIABQ@isionline.org . Pick-up and home-stays for students arriving for the Spring 2019 semester will begin the week of January 2nd ,2019. Contact ISI at least 2 weeks in advance of your arrival for the best chance of getting a home-stay placement. Please report to GEO if you feel any pressure from ISI volunteers to participate in religious activities.
4. How to Get to Campus
If you will not be picked up, taxis and Uber from the airport to UNM and to hotels near campus are relatively inexpensive (less than $20). Bus #50 goes from the airport to the UNM campus in 10 minutes. Ask the bus driver to let you off at UNM (the intersection of Yale and Central Avenues). Students moving into campus housing will need to get to the SRC Commons Building (Building #89 on the UNM central campus map, enclosed; this map is also on the UNM website at http://ppd.unm.edu/campus-maps.html). If you are moving into campus housing, make sure you arrive during move-in hours (check housing.unm.edu or email email@example.com).
5. Orientation Requirements
ALL Exchange Students must attend a new student check-in session (two hours long) AND the international orientation. BOTH OF THESE ARE REQUIRED!!!
Once you arrive at UNM, come into the GEO office. GEO is located at 2120 Mesa Vista Hall, directly east of the Student Union Building (SUB) and is in building #56 on the UNM campus map (enclosed). Bring your passport, DS-2019, I-94 (printed at cbp.gov/I94 after arrival in the US), and proof of health insurance purchased from the ISI website at https://www.internationalstudentinsurance.com/schools/university-new-mexico.php. At the check-in we will inform you about requirements you must complete before classes begin which include:
Note: Failure to provide all required information by the end of the first week of class will result in administrative withdrawal from the University and may mean that you would have to leave the country.
- Before you Leave Home
PHARMACY, MEDICAL SCIENCE, AND NURSING are not allowed to take. Law and Architecture are restricted.
Please find the semester start and end dates here. Remember, you will need to arrive about one week early in order to check-in, find housing, and attend orientation.
HOW TO REGISTER FOR YOUR COURSES
Registration for Spring 2019 does not open until the end of October 2018. Exchange students may be prevented from enrolling for some classes due to pre-requisites or the fact that they are not UNM degree students. You may need to contact advisors in specific departments to get “overrides” for the courses you need. If you need information on who to contact, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Step 1: Finding your courses
The online schedule lists all the courses, days and times that classes will be taught. You can see the “Schedule of Classes” at http://schedule.unm.edu. Click on “LoboWeb Course catalog” to find courses that will be offered.
Make sure that none of the classes you want to take conflict with any other of your courses.
Business students find available courses here: https://www.mgt.unm.edu/courses
You will need to understand the UNM course numbering system in order to choose your classes:
Course numbers in the:
100’s are introductory courses generally taken by first year students.
200-level courses are usually for second year students
300-level for third year
400-level for fourth year
Courses numbered 500 or 600 are for graduate students only (i.e., you must have completed a Bachelor’s degree or its equivalent.) You are not allowed to pre-register for graduate courses if you are not admitted as a graduate student.
Note: These are only guidelines, and students may register for any courses for which they are qualified regardless of their year in school, with the proper preparations and permissions, which may include notifying the professor or department and asking for special permission to register.
Step 2: Creating a UNM NetID
To register for classes you need a UNM NetID, to make a UNM NetID, do the following:
You will need to set up a UNM Net ID in order to register for classes, view your student information, and pay your bills with UNM. To do so, you will need your student ID# in addition to the University-issued temporary Social Security Number printed on your admission letter. To set up the NetID you will:
When you have your NetID and the list of courses you want to take, go to http://my.unm.edu
Here you can log in with the NetID and password you just created.
NOTE: It may take 48 hours that your UNM Net ID is activated. If you cannot log-in after creating the Net ID, please wait at least 48 hours.
Step 3: Registering for Courses
Please check for registration dates for your courses: http://registrar.unm.edu/Registration/index.html Note that your date is the last listed because as an exchange student you are considered as a transfer student but please try to register as soon as possible when your date comes up! You can register about three months before the semester starts. Before you try to register, you should examine the course descriptions in the online UNM Catalog.
To register for classes, you must do the following:
1. Visit the registration website: http://my.unm.edu
2. Click “Login”
3. Enter your Net ID and password
4. Click on “Student Life” tab
5. Click on “LoboWeb”
6. Click on “Registration and Records”
7. Click on “Registration (Add/Drop/with Override)”
8. Click on “Accept Financial Responsibility”
9. Select the term you will be here at UNM
10. Click on “Class Search”
11. If you go to advanced search, you can search for courses by their Course Number
12. Check the box in the “Select” column and then click “Register” to register for the course
13. Repeat this process until you have register for the courses you need
14. PLEASE MAKE SURE THAT YOU ONLY ENROLL FOR CLASSES ON THE ALBUQUERQUE/MAIN CAMPUS (found in the “Attribute” column)!!!
15. You may add or drop courses at any time before your arrival at UNM using this system.
Undergraduate International Exchange students must be registered and complete at least 12 credit hours (4 classes) each semester in order to remain full-time and maintain legal immigration status. The classes you take are completely up to you, but talk to your home-advisor before you register to make sure that they accept your course credits.
Graduate International Exchange students must be registered and complete at least 9 graduate credit hours (3 classes) each semester in order to remain full-time and maintain legal immigration status. If a graduate student takes less than 9 graduate credit hours, the student will have to take 12 credit hours: mixed undergraduate and graduate credit hours.
Most UNM courses are 3 credits and the credit values are indicated in the online Catalog and Schedule of Classes. You may register for a maximum of 18 credits, but we strongly recommend that you take no more than 15 credits your first semester.
Note: Students who want to register for English 101 or 102 and get a registration error, please email your UNM international advisor with a copy of your TOFEL score and your UNM ID number. He/she can help you to register for the English classes.
This is the link to all UNM departments: http://www.unm.edu/depart.html
This is the link to the UNM directory where you can find advisors by name: http://directory.unm.edu/
You may recieve a registration error when you attempt to enroll in courses online. Please see here: https://registrar.unm.edu/Registration/registration-add-error.html for the proper action to take. Some specific subject areas are limited. For example, if you wish to take any Business courses, please send us the list of the classes you want to take with your UNM ID number and for Architecture, please send us your portfolio, the list of Architecture software you are familiar with, and the list of classes you want to take along with your UNM ID number; Please contact GEO (see Contact Us tab) if you have questions and/or problems of any kind!
For all other classes, the best advice is that you go online and try to register as soon as possible. If you get a message that you cannot register for any particular class for any reason, try to get on the waiting list and check your email regularly because they will send you an email if a spot opens in the class and they will give you 48 hours to register for the class.
It is best to contact the instructor or department advisor in advance by e-mail to get permission to enter the class. Also, during the first week of classes many students add and drop their courses. If you cannot register for classes, you can always talk to the instructor or advisor after your arrival but please try to register as soon as you receive your admission letter! Most exchange students get into the classes they need. However, registration in all desired courses is not guaranteed. If you have problems registering for the courses you want after you arrive, please come and talk with us at GEO (See Contact Us tab).
You can register courses ONLY AFTER your Course Registration Date. Please see here: http://registrar.unm.edu/Registration/ for the schedule. All the new students, including the exchange students who have earned 0-14 credits at UNM, should see the bottom of this page.
You are not allowed to take courses from the school of Medicine, Nursing, and Pharmacy. Also, you are restricted to take courses from the School of Law and Architecture. If you are planning to take courses in Law and Architecture, please contact the department advisors or please contact GEO (See Contact Us tab) before the semester starts.
There will also be a $275 visa processing and administration fee assessed per semester during your stay at UNM.
You will not have a bill until you have registered for classes. The bill can be accessed by logging in to my.unm.edu with your NetID (see above). Bills paid by credit card will incur an additional 3% fee or you can pay by wire transfer using your UNM ID number through our partner flywire at: https://www.flywire.com/pay/unm.
Remember that the amount you pay depends on course fees for the courses you are taking and your on-campus housing charges. There is also a the UNM health insurance charge if you do not receive a waiver of the UNM Student Health Insurance Plan. Please check the due dates and submit your payment online or to the Bursar’s office by the correct deadline to avoid late fees.
Finally, if an outside sponsor will pay your bill, you will need to go in person to the UNM Bursar’s Office so that the bill can be sent to your sponsor, even if this information has already been sent to UNM. For more information regarding payment, please contact the Bursar’s Office at bursar.unm.edu.
For the most up to date Health Insurance information, please read through the "Insurance Requirements for UNM International Students" here: http://geo.unm.edu/students/health_care/health_insurance/insurance_information.html.
Every exchange student must buy one of the plans from the website above – no exceptions. Even if you have insurance from your home country or provided by your university, you must purchase one of these U.S. and UNM-approved plans.
Students MUST buy one of the 4 plans from the International Student Insurance website here: https://www.internationalstudentinsurance.com/schools/university-new-mexico.php
They must buy this insurance even if they are ALSO required to purchase a plan or are already covered by a plan offered by your institution or your country. If they already have an insurance plan, the UNM plan will act as secondary insurance coverage for their stay in the US.
Please remember that US federal regulations require that all J1 visa holders have insurance that meets specific requirements and this policy is being implemented to ensure compliance with U.S. federal requirements. All of the plans offered on the site above meet the minimum requirements for J1 visa holders.