• Around Philadelphia, Wame Olerile
    • Around Philadelphia, Wame Olerile
    • Photo Credit: Wame Olerile, School of Arts and Sciences
    • Adria and Ben
    • Adria and Ben
    • Photo Credit: Adria San Jose Plana, Spring 2014
    • Philadelphia as seen from New Jersey, Harriet Parish
    • Philadelphia as seen from New Jersey, Harriet Parish
    • Photo Credit: Harriet Parish, School of Arts and Sciences
    • 5th Ave, New York, Harriet Parish
    • 5th Ave, New York, Harriet Parish
    • Photo Credit: Harriet Parish, School of Arts and Sciences
    • EXOTHERM II, Laura Gertken
    • EXOTHERM II, Laura Gertken
    • Photo Credit: Laura Gertken, School of Arts and Sciences
    • EXOTHERM, Laura Gertken
    • EXOTHERM, Laura Gertken
    • Photo Credit: Laura Gertken, School of Arts and Sciences
    • Celebrating
    • Celebrating "The Color of Your Voice", Kaya Doi
    • Photo Credit: Kaya Doi, School of Arts and Sciences
    • The legendary Dixie Hummingbirds Mural, Wame Olerile
    • The legendary Dixie Hummingbirds Mural, Wame Olerile
    • Photo Credit: Wame Olerile, School of Arts and Sciences
    • Roots and Routes, Kaya Doi
    • Roots and Routes, Kaya Doi
    • Photo Credit: Kaya Doi, School of Arts and Sciences
    • University in Autumn, Shiying Zhang
    • University in Autumn, Shiying Zhang
    • Photo Credit: Shiying Zhang, School of Arts and Sciences
    • Red in Philly, Shiying Zhang
    • Red in Philly, Shiying Zhang
    • Photo Credit: Shiying Zhang, School of Arts and Sciences
    • The Park by Bach Hoang Dang
    • The Park by Bach Hoang Dang
    • Photo Credit: Bach Hoang Dang
    • Drive, Thea Walton
    • Drive, Thea Walton
    • Photo Credit: Thea Walton, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Previous
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Congratulations on your acceptance to the University of Pennsylvania as an undergraduate exchange student!  Please consult this page to answer your questions about coming to and living in Philadelphia.  It covers practical items such as entering the US, finances, housing, travel arrangements, health care, insurance, safety, and more. 

Penn Abroad

Penn Abroad is responsible for advising Penn students who study abroad, as well as undergraduate exchange students who study at Penn for a semester or year.  Penn Abroad organizes programming for exchange students throughout the year and also liaises with your home institution and your academic advisor at Penn.

As an exchange student, you are assigned by region to a specific Program Manager in Penn Abroad.  You can see which Program Manager works with you by visiting our staff page.


Penn ISSS

International Students and Scholars Services (ISSS) is responsible for issues concerning your immigration and employment status. 

Logistics

  • Program Dates
  • Fall 2017

    August 22 Move into campus housing

    August 23-28 New Student Orientation (NSO) (a detailed calendar will be sent to you closer to arrival)*

    August 29 First Day of Classes

    December 11 Last Day of Classes

    December 14-21 Final Exams

    Spring 2018

    January 7 Move into campus housing

    January 8-9 Exchange Student Orientation (ESO)*

    January 10 First Day of Classes

    April 25 Last Day of Classes

    April 30 - May 8 Final Exams

    See the Complete Academic Calendar for Information on Breaks, etc.

    * NSO is mandatory for students arriving in the fall; ESO is mandatory for students arriving in the spring.

  • Arrival in Philadelphia
  • Flights

    It is best to fly directly to the Philadelphia International Airport (PHL).

    Getting to Campus

    The easiest way to get to campus from the airport is by taxi.  There is a fixed rate from the airport of approximately $30.  By law, taxis in Philadelphia accept credit cards.  However, it is always a good idea to check with your driver to make sure that he is able to accept them before leaving the airport.

    Train is another option. There is regional rail service from the airport to University City or 30th Street Station.  The train costs approximately $8 cash only.  A taxi from the train station will cost about $6.  It is easier to catch a cab from 30th Street Station than from University City.

    Ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft are also avaliable.

    All exchange students should arrange travel to arrive at Penn in time for the Exchange Student Orientation (NSO/ESO). 

  • Exchange Student Orientation (ESO/NSO)
  • In the fall semester, new exchange students participate in New Student Orientation in conjunction with new Penn students. In the spring semester, new exchange students participate in Exchange Student Orientation which is specific to new exchange students. 

    In the fall, New Student Orientation (NSO) is a five day-long orientation designed to acquaint new students with each other and with Penn. It includes advising on course registration, academic tips to help you succeed in the classroom, an exploration of the campus resources as well as fun opportunities to socialize with other new students. This orientation is run by Penn NSO. Each student is charged approximately $295 to their bursar account for participation in this mandatory orientation. The fee covers meals during orientation and access to orientation activities offered by Penn Abroad and Penn NSO.

    For more information on the NSO and dates, please visit the NSO webpage here: https://secure.www.upenn.edu/nso/.

    If you are starting your studies in the Spring, you will attend the Exchange Student Orientation (ESO) which lasts two days. It includes registering for classes, academic tips to help you succeed in the classroom, an exploration of the campus resources as well as fun opportunities to socialize with other new students. There is no charge for this orientation.

    All exchange students are required to report to International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) for a mandatory new student arrival information and immigration documents review & presentation. This mandatory Immigration Check-In has been built into your orientation schedule. More information can be found here: http://global.upenn.edu/isss/orientation.

  • Housing at Penn
  • Living On Campus

    All exchange students are required to live on-campus. Living on-campus gives exchange students a true taste of American university life and offers greater exposure to American students.  On-campus housing offers a furnished residence close to campus in a reasonably secure environment. People new to Philadelphia and attending the University for a short period of time often prefer to live in University housing for safety reasons and the opportunity to meet other students. All rooms and apartments are furnished, but you will have to provide sheets and towels and necessary utensils should you have a kitchen. Your housing bill will be charged to your Penn account. Possible room types include single, double and triple rooms, as well as one to four bedroom apartments.

    More information about Penn On-Campus Housing can be found here: http://cms.business-services.upenn.edu/residential-services/applications-a-assignments/new-undergraduate-students/exchange-students.html


     

Connect to Penn Resources

One of the greatest things about Penn is the wide range of resources and services available to students.  Most resources that are available to matriculated Penn students are also available to our exchange students.  Visit our resources page for more information. 
 

Information About Life at Penn and in Philadelphia

ISSS has compiled an excellent handbook which contains information about living at Penn and in Philadelphia, as well as numerous other resources. 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • I haven’t been able to setup my PennKey, what should I do?
  • Within 7-10 business days following your acceptance, your PennKey setup code is usually generated and emailed to you from another office at Penn.  Unfortunately, Penn Abroad does not control that process and cannot help with checking your setup code. Please check the spam or junk filter on your email account to see if it was filtered accidentally.

    Please visit this page for common PennKey Registration Problems: http://www.upenn.edu/computing/pennkey/help/problems.html

    If your PennKey registration still does not work, you will need to contact the PennKey Office directly by calling +1-215-573-4778 or by emailing help@isc.upenn.edu.  

Facebook Group

Join the 2017/18 Exchange Student Facebook Group!

*If your Facebook name does not match your name in Penn Abroad's system, please email the coordinator so that you can be approved to join.

This group is only open to exchange students at Penn during the 2017/18 academic year, and Penn Abroad past participants and program ambassadors.