ISSO staff providing assistance to the arriving international students.

The key purpose of the J-1 scholar program is to foster cultural exchange between researchers from across the world. Hosting an international scholar is vital to this aim. Although the officials at the International Students & Scholars Office (ISSO) always strive to support arriving international scholars, it is expected that the host faculty or department will help new international visitors acclimate to life in the U.S. This includes assisting scholars with basic needs upon their arrival such as securing housing, setting up a phone plan, opening a bank account, and shopping for furniture and groceries.

International visiting scholars should be encouraged to meet with the ISSO during their first week on campus. The ISSO provides assistance with the visa issuance process and continues to ensure that the scholar and their dependents maintain valid status while at UMass Lowell. Additionally, UML's Office of Multicultural Affairs is a great resource for international students, staff, and faculty who are new to the U.S.