TRAVEL & ARRIVAL INFORMATION
TRAVEL DOCUMENTS FOR PASSAGE THROUGH U.S. CUSTOMS:
U.S. Citizens: United States Passport.
U.S. Permanent Residents: Foreign passport, United States "Green Card" showing permanent residency status.
F-1 Visa Students: Foreign passport, United States F-1 Student Visa in passport, most recent Form I-20 and the related “back-up” documents from your visa interview (e.g., your $200 SEVIS Fee receipt, your acceptance letter, and any bank statements).
Canadian F-1 Status Students: Citizens of Canada are not required to obtain an F-1 Visa in their passport, but may instead enter the U.S. with just the following -- Canadian passport and most recent Form I-20.
BOOKING YOUR FLIGHTS: Please arrive on Wednesday, August 23, 2017 for new student move-in day. After the term is finished, you may stay on campus for all or part of winter break, at an additional charge. Or, you may plan to depart Gordon College on Friday, December 22, 2017—the day after the last final exam.
AIRPORT PICKUPS: Free airport pickups by Gordon College staff and student leaders are available for you on international student move-in day (Wednesday, August 23, 2017) only. Email Caroline Dixon (firstname.lastname@example.org) with information about your arrival flight to BOSTON: arriving flight number, airline, arrival time, arrival date (August 23, 2017 only), and arrival gate in Boston (gate A/B/C/E).
PARENTS & FAMILY: Will your parents/family be coming to Orientation with you? Several local area hotels provide discounts for Gordon families: www.gordon.edu/areahotels. Please note that if your family is coming, we cannot give you a ride from the airport. Instead, we recommend a rental car.
A GIFT FOR YOU: The Gordon College faculty, staff and community have gathered together to purchase new, warm bedding for all incoming international students. We want you to feel welcome when you enter your room in one of our residence halls. The gift includes a simple set of sheets, quilt, pillow, pillow case, towel and hand towel.
DRESSING FOR COLD WINTERS: Massachusetts has a cold and snowy winter season. Ideal clothing includes waterproof boots, thick coats, warm socks, scarves and gloves. The campus also houses a free clothing exchange (The Common Exchange) where students can find winter coats, gloves, hats, and other winter clothing items.
ODDS & ENDS
TECHNOLOGY DISCOUNTS: If you are purchasing a laptop computer to bring to campus, please note that you are eligible for discounted prices and special offers.
BANKS & PHONES: During Orientation, banks and cell phone companies visit campus, so you may open accounts. If you miss them on campus, you have the option of taking the local shuttle.
PURCHASING ITEMS: The Gordon College Bookstore sells many essential items. During Orientation, we will take you to the local shopping mall to purchase items which you did not pack in your luggage. Typically we visit Target at the Liberty Tree Mall in Danvers, MA—if you want to plan ahead.
MAILING ADDRESS: YOUR NAME, Gordon College Mailroom, 255 Grapevine Road, Wenham, MA 01984. You may send boxes before arriving, and then pick them up at the mailroom when you get here; this is also your address for all of your years at Gordon College, regardless of where you live.
GC 101: Visit www.gordon.edu/orientation to set up your new email and complete the online program “GC 101”. This is how you will confirm your new Gordon College email, register for classes and complete other essential pre-arrival tasks online.
BOOKS: You will purchase or rent your school books only after confirming your course schedule with your Academic Advisor during Orientation. Please do not purchase books before arriving.
EVEN MORE IMPORTANT INFORMATION
ID CARD PHOTO: We would like your photo so that we can make an ID card (identification card) for you, before you arrive. The photo should be a standard passport-style photo of your face and shoulders. The background should be light-colored. Please email the photo as a JPEG (not a physical photo, just email please). Please email your photo to IDCard.CTS@gordon.edu.
HEALTH INSURANCE: The on-campus Health Center is staffed with friendly medical professionals, and they will help you navigate the American health care system. Gordon College participates in a student health plan through University Health Plans with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, which you may read about here: www.universityhealthplans.com. Health insurance plans are required for all students, while dental and vision insurance plans are optional.
Visa Students: You will be automatically enrolled in the specific Gordon College Student Health Insurance Plan. You will receive your health insurance card with your unique subscriber number approximately 2-4 weeks after the semester begins. Your health insurance card will be mailed to your Gordon College student mailbox on campus. Your coverage begins promptly on August 20, 2017, even if you do not have your card at that time. (This means that if you do need to go to the hospital or receive off-campus medical care before your card arrives, you can be assured that the health insurance will still be in effect at that time.)
Non-Visa Students: You will NOT be automatically enrolled in the specific Gordon College Student Health Insurance Plan. Instead, you have the responsibility to either enroll or waive this specific plan. Many students choose to waive the Gordon College plan, in order to stay on their parents’ health insurance plans. Please visit the link above to complete the Enrollment Form or the Waiver Form before August 1.
One of Gordon’s distinctives is a required outdoor education experience during every student’s first year as a part of the Core Curriculum. The focus for both of these options is on goal-setting, community, reflective learning, and growing in Christ, and both are designed to serve as a catalyst for personal growth and leadership development.
Students have several options for completing the Gordon College core requirement: (1) enrolling in a La Vida Expedition during Summer 2017* before you start at Gordon, (2) enrolling in a Discovery Course during the 2017 Fall Semester, (3) enrolling in a Discovery Course during the 2018 Spring Semester, or (4) enrolling in a La Vida Expedition during Summer 2018. *The Summer 2017 option is not recommended for you, because it may conflict with our International Student Orientation.
La Vida Expedition: Intensive 12-day wilderness experience that promotes leadership, confidence and growth in community. La Vida Expeditions include outdoor rock climbing, ropes course, orienteering and a solo experience.
Discovery Course: Seven-week outdoor activities course that develops trust, responsibility and self-confidence. Discovery includes initiative games, ropes course, indoor rock climbing and an overnight weekend in New Hampshire.
Storage: There is no charge for storing personal items on campus. During Winter Break and Spring Break, students who are definitely returning after the break may keep their items in their assigned on-campus rooms. During Summer Break, students are permitted to store up to 3 large boxes (or similarly-sized items) in the designated Residence Hall storage rooms. International students are permitted to store up to 2 additional large boxes (or similarly-sized items) in the International Student Organization storage room.
Housing: There are additional charges for housing on campus, while school is not in session. During Winter Break, students may move into special "Winter Break Housing" rooms and continue to experience the residential community ($10-15/night added to a student's SFS bill for the term). During Spring Break, students may remain in their on-campus rooms ($10-15/night added to a student's SFS bill for the term). During Summer Break, students may move into "Summer Housing" rooms and continue to experience the residential community ($100-125/week, paid by cash/check/credit card every 2 weeks at the Cashier’s Office in MacDonald Hall).