After hearing back from both Mudd and CIEE there is definitely so much more to do.
One of the first things for me was getting my passport renewed since it must be valid for the entire stay and also I think for a month afterwards. That took a little while and I had to notify both Mudd and CIEE that some of the information I was submitting was going to be wrong since I was using my old passport information. It wasn’t too bad though.
On the Mudd side, you have to turn in the program acceptance letter, the intent form and all the insurance, emergency card, all the other forms and checklists. Some of these were extremely annoying and involved calls home to get updated information, or requesting physicals. Some of them required traversing campus to find offices in order to get signatures. Then there was pre-departure orientations, both as meetings, and online workshops. Then you had to email Student Accounts to let them know the days that you will be abroad so that they can give you a quote for the plane tickets and whatever money may be needed if there is no meal plan at your abroad school.
Once you bought your plane tickets, you had to turn in your itinerary to both the Office of Study Abroad and the Office of Student Accounts so that the first knows when and where you’re going to be when you’re abroad, and the second can give you the flight reimbursement so long as it was within the quote, or they would give you how much they stated in the quote if you went over.
On the CIEE side, there was a big long list of things to do on the CIEE accounts page. These included medical reports, housing surveys, and alien registration information. There was also 12 documents to read, which talked about phones, internet, arrival to Korea, online orientation, etc. Most of it was pretty straightforward and relatively easy but it’s all stuff that needs to get done.
Also, at some point I received an email about iNext which is an insurance policy that CIEE provides and so I also had to fill out that information for the complimentary (can I even call it that) insurance.
Then there was buying plane tickets, figuring out how I was getting money and packing. For buying plane tickets, I had to send an email to student accounts at Mudd and tell them the day that I was leaving and the day that I was coming back, then they gave a quote for airfare and my family helped me buy the tickets. Then we sent the itinerary with the reciept to student accounts to be reimbursed (either with the full amount, or the quote amount). With the plane ticket, CIEE said that if we showed up at the airport between certain hours on February 23, they would have someone come pick us up so on that end things worked out nicely.
Money. For food and such, my school provided me with a stipend and so that was awesome. I called my bank and told them that I would be abroad for Feb – June and so they made it so if I used my card, it wouldn’t freeze. However, my card has a transaction fee if I use it abroad so my dad and I tried to find cards that would have no transaction fee and/or see if I could get traveler’s checks. Now I have a credit card that works abroad and no transaction fees. Yay!
Packing… let’s leave that to a different day…
Once I got my new passport, I also had to get my visa. CIEE sent out a document that walked us through that process. They also sent us important documents that would allow us to get a studnet visa, including a certificate of admission and letters from both Yonsei University and CIEE. CIEE paid for the student visa so that was pretty awesome too. Through Travisa, we sent in our passport and the requirement information and application to the required office (the office you sent your documents too was determined was based on where you lived). CIEE paid for a single entry visa but when I asked around some of the other participants ended up receiving a year-long multiple entry visa. I wasn’t so lucky. I received a 4 month, single entry visa so I currently need to leave the minute I finish my studies. I might try to get that changed though so that I can stay longer and see Korea more.