Ready for campus?

After acceptance to Northwestern, complete the following steps.

  • Step 1: Activate your NetID
    Your acceptance letter will include a NetID and activation code. Go to NU Validate at to change your password and set security questions.
  • Step 2: Activate your Northwestern email
    Using your NetID and password, activate your email account at
  • Step 3: Request DS-2019 and pay the SEVIS I-901 fee 
    You will need to submit a DS-2019 request to the Northwestern International Office.  On your form, please select Undergraduate Exchange: International Program Development from the drop down menu. You may include the attached acceptance letter or a copy of this e-mail with your request. Please see the International Office website for instructions
  • Step 4: Plan housing and living arrangements
    Once you have a Northwestern email account, you can begin to register for on-campus housing. You can also choose to live off campus.Our Housing Options webpage covers housing options and can help you estimate living expenses.
  • Step 5: Plan your coursework
    Although you cannot officially register until just before arrival on campus, you can familiarize yourself with course offerings and contact faculty. Begin to research classes.
  • Step 6: Plan your trip
    J-1 Students may not arrive to the U.S. more than 30 days before the start date on your I-20/DS-2019.  If you decide to come earlier than this, you will enter as a tourist and will need to leave the United States so that you may enter in the correct J-1 status no more than 30 days before the start date listed on your document. The International Office website includes specific information about port of entry and inspection, transportation from the airport, and more.