Orientation and Visa Clearance

NOTICE: The Spring 2021 Visa Clearance, Welcome Week and Orientation will be conducted completely online. There will be no "in-person" check-in or activities. To ensure the safety and well-being of students and staff, ISS will be following federal, state, local and university Covid-19 guidelines for social distancing and remote operations during this period.

The ISS Orientation consists of (1) Visa Clearance, (2) The Welcome Orientation, and (3) Welcome Week Activities. Visa Clearance is required for all new students. The Welcome and Welcome Week Activities are optional, but you are highly encouraged to participate and get the chance to meet other international students and the ISS staff before school starts.

Visa Clearance, required of all new international students, introduces you to the general rules of your visa status and verifies your immigration documents upon arrival in the U.S. All new incoming students must complete Visa Clearance. Most of Visa Clearance can be completed online (before you even arrive in Hawai'i).

If you do not complete Visa Clearance, your record will have a registration hold from ISS that takes effect on the first day of the semester. This hold prevents you from adding and dropping classes.

Go to the Visa Clearance section below and follow the steps to complete.

Unfortunately, due to Covid-19, The Welcome will not be held this spring 2021 semester. We are currently in the planning stages for any spring 2021 welcome events. please check back soon for more information.

The Welcome Orientation ("The Welcome") is a full afternoon introducing you to International Student Services staff, student resources, cultural and safety issues, clubs and activities, and most of all, other students. The day ends with a reception of food and other refreshments. Here you may meet new students like yourself and make new friends from all over the world.

Due to Covid-19, any Welcome Week sessions will be conducted via Zoom for spring 2021. Spring 2021 Welcome events are currently in the planning stages, please check back soon for more information.

During the week prior to the start of the semester, ISS provides workshops on specific topics that may be valuable to new students. Also, the morning Coffee Socials are opportunities to relax and have some coffee or tea before the start of the day, perhaps meet other students. These events are optional and do not require sign-up.

Visa Clearance (Required)

A UH username is needed to access the Visa Clearance session. Apply to get a UH username now. You will need your UH ID number provided to you on your admission letter.

Screenshot of UH username application page

Determine your visa status for Visa Clearance.

If you received a form I-20 "Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status," then you are an F-1 student.

Form I-20 sample

If you received a Form DS-2019 "Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor Status (J-Nonimmigrant)," then you are a J-1 student.

Form DS-2019 sample

Make sure to log out of all Google and hawaii.edu accounts, then click the link to the Visa Clearance quiz.

Take the Visa Clearance Quiz. You must log in with your UH username and password.

(NOTE: Use the link provided above. You cannot access Visa Clearance if you use the regular Laulima URL.)

Laulima login screen


After the login screen, you may see a pop-up window that says you are not a member, and if you want to join the site; click "yes."

Laulima join question screen

After the login screen, click "Begin" under the quiz for your visa type (J-1 or F-1). Follow the directions.

Visa clearance quiz begin screen

Once you pass with a 10/10 score, download the certificate and save it to your computer or mobile device.

If you do not get the certificate on first completing your quiz, please review the quiz in Laulima to see the option for a certificate.

When you arrive in the U.S., you must report to the International Student Services Office online.

Sign in for immigration document verification online. You will need to log in with your UH username and password.

NOTE: UH uses a Gmail server. If you are already logged into a personal Gmail account, you may encounter an error page. You must log out of your personal Gmail account, and then reload the page and log in with your UH username.

J-1 students need to upload copies of: (1) passport, (2) visa, (3) signed DS-2019, (4) J-1 Health Insurance Provider Certification form, (5) J-1 Visa Clearance Certificate

F-1 students need to upload copies of: (1) passport, (2) visa, (3) signed I-20, (4) F-1 Visa Clearance Certificate

Follow the directions on the sign-in page on how to upload your documents AND submit a request for verification.
Students with a Visa Clearance Hold on their UH account are required to complete this portion in order to have the "Visa Clearance Hold" removed.


To complete Visa Clearance, you need provide:

  1. U.S. address where you will be staying. This may be a hotel or other temporary lodging.
  2. U.S. phone number. This can be your hotel/lodging number, dormitory number, personal number, or any other number at which you may be contacted. It must be a U.S. number.

**If you do not yet know this information, you can enter it after your arrival, but before reporting to ISS.

We need this information to "activate" your immigration record. You may update the information when it changes.

Go to MyUH to enter this information. Follow the guide below.

After logging in, go to the "Personal Information" tab and select "View/Update My Address(es) and Phone(s)."

Click on "Current" to change your current address.

Enter your address and phone number in the boxes in the correct format.

When you are finished, click "Submit" at the bottom of the page.

Address Submit Screen


If you did all of the above, you have completed Visa Clearance.

After your documents have been recorded through the Visa Clearance Session, ISS will remove its hold on your registration that would take effect at the beginning of the semester. Please check with other offices that may still have holds on your registration.

The Welcome Week Spring 2021 (January 4-8)

Coffee SocialNot available as in-person event for fall 2020! Sorry. Bring your own coffee to the virtual event!

Have some fresh coffee, tea and snacks to start your morning. Take this opportunity to meet other students and staff in an informal setting.
Tips for Living in Hawai'iLearn about where to shop, how to save money, local secrets, and many other things you should know to live in Hawai'i.
TaxesWhether you are receiving income or not, international students still need to be aware of the U.S. tax system. Find out what you need to know and where to find the answers.
F-1 EmploymentLearn about common employment types related to F-1 students and how to strategize your academic path toward career goals.
J-1/J-2 EmploymentLearn about common J-1 employment types and the processes and limits.
Social Security Numbers,, Driver Licenses, and State IDsLearn the procedures for getting a Social Security Number, Hawai'i driver license or state ID.
Covid-19 ResourcesDuring the pandemic, make sure you know about all the resources available to you on campus and in the community.
NOTE: Sessions may be added, changed, or removed at any time.

Resources for Sessions

To be announced soon. Check back in December!