Orientation and Arrival

UMW welcomes all our incoming international students!  Click on the links below to view important information designed to help you plan your arrival on campus and transition into life at UMW.

Arrival Information

The University of Mary Washington is located in Fredericksburg, Virginia, 50 miles south of Washington D.C..  Visitors may use Ronald Reagan National Airport (DCA) or Washington-Dulles International Airport (IAD). Each airport is roughly 60 miles north of Fredericksburg.  Students are responsible for making their own way from the airport to the campus. A shuttle service from both airports to the University of Mary Washington is available for approximately $110 dollars.  Please contact Cheryl Mason in the Center for International Education (cmason@umw.edu) to request a shuttle reservation.

International Student Check In Day for the 2015 fall semester is Monday, August 18, 2015. Students should plan to arrive at Washington DC’s Dulles Airport on that date in order to receive transportation from the airport to UMW’s campus. Please contact iss@umw.edu with your flight information.  Please note that student housing is not available prior to the check in date.  Students arriving on alternate dates you will be responsible for your own transportation and lodging until check in day.

Maps and Directions


International Student Orientation is an essential part of your arrival process.

UMW Orientation will help you learn your way around campus, meet other students, and register for classes.

What to Bring to UMW

Packing for several months or a year abroad can seem like a daunting task.  The Departure Checklist provides a list of essential items you won’t want to leave behind and important phone numbers to carry with you while you travel.

Computer:  Bring or Buy?  UMW’s Information Technologies department provides resources to help you make choices about computer needs.

Health and Safety

All international exchange students are required to show proof of health insurance or purchase a policy through the University of Mary Washington. For rates, please contact our office.

All incoming international exchange students are required to submit a Health History & Immunization form. You may download the form here. This form must be submitted to the Student Health Center prior to your arrival, or you will not be able to register for courses or access your residence hall. All students will have visiting privileges at the Student Health Center.

Housing Information

All incoming undergraduate students should have completed and submitted a Housing & Dining contract to Residence Life. The contract will be e-mailed to you. The contract can also be found at on the Residence Life website.

  • International undergraduate students have designated move-in dates indicated in your welcome letter.
  • Room assignments are made on a space-available basis.
  • For information about room amenities, check out the Res-Life Welcome and UMW-at-a-Glance
  • You may request to have bed linens purchased prior to your arrival for approximately $30 dollars. We highly recommend this option, as no bed linens are provided for you. To order bed linens, contact cmason@umw.edu.  We will take you shopping the day after your arrival to purchase additional items you may need for your room.

Dining Information

For information about the meal plan in your dining contract, click here.

Course Catalog and Academic Calendar

To research the degree programs and course offerings at the University of Mary Washington,  consult the course catalog.

The UMW Academic Calendar outlines all the important dates for each term, including first and last day of classes, add/drop period, and University holidays.


International undergraduate students are required to enroll in a minimum of 12 credit hours in order to maintain visa status. Students typically enroll in 12-15 credit hours per semester. Credit hours represent the number of hours you are expected to be in the classroom. In addition, students are expected to spend considerable time outside of the classroom to keep up with assignments and study for exams.

Additional Resources

Fitness Center

Student Clubs and Organizations

Volunteer Opportunities

Fredericksburg Visitors Information