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Before Your Residency: Prepare to Travel

Overview

You will receive a residency registration confirmation email within two business days after your registration is processed (see Confirm Your Residency).  After you receive your residency registration confirmation email, you can make your travel arrangements.

Please pay close attention to all of the details in the confirmation email as it contains specific hotel and travel information as well as other tips to prepare for your residency. We strongly recommend you stay at Walden’s host hotel to take advantage of Walden’s special group rate, complimentary Wi-Fi in your sleeping room, and unlimited networking opportunities.

If you do not receive a registration confirmation email within two business days of registering, please contact University Events at askevents@mail.waldenu.edu to request a registration confirmation.

Attendance Requirements

Attendance is required for ALL residency sessions in order to successfully complete your residency, skills lab, or pre-practicum.

Full participation in your online classes is also required while you are attending your residency, skills lab, or pre-practicum.

  • Your registration confirmation email provides important details about event start and end times for your program as well as the location of your residency/skills lab/pre-practicum sessions.
  • You are expected to make travel arrangements that allow enough time for you to check in by the date and time listed in the schedule and stay until the conclusion of the last session on the last day of your residency.
  • Late arrival to the event, early departure from the event and/or missed sessions may result in the loss of residency units.
  • Daily sessions typically begin around 8 a.m. and last through early evening.
  • Notify your online instructors of the dates you will be attending the residency/skills lab/pre-practicum. Be sure to work ahead on course assignments and discussion posts because your time attending the residency will be filled with academic sessions, networking, and skill development.

For the complete daily schedule, please see your confirmation email to download the Residency App. The daily schedule will be available two weeks prior to the start of the event.

For residency/skills lab/pre-practicum attendance, timing requirements, and options within each program, see the Residency Timing table.

Air Travel

You may make flight reservations after you receive your residency registration confirmation email. Please see your registration confirmation email for airport information, residency start and end times, and other important travel information. Late arrival to the residency or early departure from the residency could result in the loss of residency units.

Plan an airfare budget of $250-$450 for residencies taking place in the 48 contiguous U.S. states and $800-$1,200 for residencies taking place outside the 48 contiguous U.S. states. Of course, airfare rates vary based on home airport, residency city, air carrier, flight schedules, connections, and time of year.

Important:

  • Be sure to factor in transportation time between the airport and the residency venue when making travel arrangements to allow plenty of time for hotel and residency check-in before the first residency session.
  • You are expected to attend all residency sessions in order to successfully complete your residency.
  • Late arrival to the residency or early departure from the residency could result in the loss of residency units.

If you cancel your Walden residency registration, it is your responsibility to cancel your hotel, flight, and other travel arrangements and abide by their cancelation policies.

Airport Transportation

Your registration confirmation email will list transportation options to and from the airport in the residency city. Rates vary by mode of transportation. Be sure to factor in transportation time between the airport and the residency venue when making travel arrangements to allow plenty of time for residency check-in and after the last residency session concludes.

Lodging

Please see your registration confirmation email for the host hotel location, Walden’s special room rate, and other important reservation information. You should reserve your hotel room as soon as you receive your residency registration confirmation email. Availability is limited and rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

It is strongly encouraged you stay at Walden’s host hotel so you can take advantage of:

  • A discounted Walden sleeping room rate.
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi. A savings of up to $15 plus taxes/fees per day.
  • Easy access to your room. Escape for a quick break between residency sessions.
  • More networking opportunities. Mingle before and after sessions with faculty, staff, and other students who are also staying at the hotel.
  • Greater convenience. A short walk to the sessions means no traffic, parking issues, or extra transportation costs.

Be sure to ask for the Walden University room block rate when making your hotel reservation and do so prior to the deadline indicated in your confirmation email. Keep in mind that if you make your reservation after the booking deadline, the hotel reserves the right to increase room rates. In other words, you may have to pay the full room rate and, depending on room availability, may have to find another hotel.

All hotel reservations will require a credit or debit card and some may require a deposit payment to confirm your stay.

If you choose to stay at a hotel other than Walden’s host hotel, please remember you are responsible for your own transportation to and from daily sessions and events.

If you cancel your Walden residency/skills lab/pre-practicum registration, it is your responsibility to cancel your hotel, flight, and other travel arrangements and abide by their cancellation policies.

Meals

Meals are not included in your residency fee. Daily beverage service will be provided.

Plan a meal budget of approximately $15-$25 (plus tax and tip) per meal for dining expenses if you choose to dine in the residency venue establishments and/or select nearby, non-fast-food options. See the hotel concierge upon arrival for local dining information.

You may pack non-perishable food items or visit a local grocery or convenience store upon arrival to reduce dining expenses. You may also check with the host hotel to see if they can provide a refrigerator and/or a microwave oven in your sleeping room (if available, additional fees and taxes may be billed to your sleeping room).

Requirement for Non-U.S. Students

As soon as you receive your registration confirmation email, you should complete the mandatory steps to obtain an I-20 for your U.S. residency.

Please refer to the Form I-20 website for policy and process information and begin the I-20 process immediately. Thoroughly review the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document as well.

 

The rules and regulations of the U.S. Department of State require all non-U.S. students attending Walden residencies in the United States to obtain an I-20 from Walden University for entry into the United States. Students who are citizens of Visa Exempt countries, Canada and Bermuda, do not have to apply for a separate visa; however, these students must obtain an I-20 and pay the SEVIS fee. Students from all other countries, including visa waiver countries, must also obtain an F-1 student visa for entry into the United States to attend Walden residencies.

Therefore, non-U.S. students cannot attend a U.S. residency without having the proper documentation for attending an academic program. This documentation is the I-20 and F-1 student visa or, for students who are citizens of Canada or Bermuda, the I-20 only.

If you fail to comply with the above policy and attempt to attend a U.S. residency without the proper documentation, you will be denied entry to the residency.

Also, if you apply for your I-20 less than 3-4 months before your residency start, there may not be sufficient time to complete the required processes and approvals for you to be able to travel and attend your U.S. residency.

 

Residency Cancellation Policy

If you have not completed the mandatory steps to obtain an I-20 and an F-1 student visa according to the above policy within 30 days prior to your U.S. residency, your residency registration will be cancelled and subject to the cancelation parameters below.

  • Cancellations at least 30 calendar days before the start of the residency – 100% refund without penalty.
  • Cancellation from 30 to 11 days before the start date – refund minus a 5% cancelation fee.
  • Cancellation within 10 days of the start date – no refund will be issued.

 

Requirements for Entry into the U.S.

To enter the United States properly, as you pass through U.S. Immigration and Customs, please be sure to have your:

  • Current passport
  • F-1 visa (not required for citizens of Canada and Bermuda)
  • Form I-20
  • The receipt of your SEVIS fee payment

 

Requirements for Check-In to the U.S. Residency

To check-in to the residency at the international student table, please be sure to bring:

  • Current passport
  • F-1 visa (not required for citizens of Canada and Bermuda)
  • Form I-20
  • The receipt of your SEVIS fee payment

You will NOT be allowed to participate in the academic residency if you do not have the listed documents. No exceptions will be made for anyone.

Things To Do Before & After Sessions

You’ll be engaging in academic sessions from about 8 a.m. until early evening and you are expected to attend all sessions in order to successfully complete your residency/skills lab/pre-practicum. While your primary purpose for traveling is to attend Walden’s academic event, you may choose to explore the city before and after sessions or extend your stay to take advantage of local area attractions and events. Your registration email confirmation and the Residency App provides city information including things to see and do in the area to plan or extend your stay.

Travel Companions

Many students bring family and/or other travel companions with them to residencies, however only registered students can attend residency sessions.

The hotel concierge on site can recommend activities for travel guests while you are involved in academic residency sessions. Also, child care is not provided at the residency, and children are not permitted to attend academic or networking sessions. Contact the hotel to inquire about local child care facilities.

Please note: Family/travel companions SHOULD NOT travel with students attending Blended Academic Year in Residence (BAYR) residencies.

Travel Delays

If your travel to an academic residency is delayed by one day or less due to weather related issues, please email academicresidencies@mail.waldenu.edu to indicate your arrival delay and your anticipated arrival.

If your travel to an academic residency is delayed by more than one day or canceled due to weather related issues, please contact Academic Advising to petition the residency. Please include documentation of cancelation from the airline or other transportation source. Documentation can include, but is not limited to, original email from airline communicating cancelation, weather report in area you reside with documentation of weather conditions, and other relative documentation.

See the Cancellation Policy for more information.

Travel Tips

At Walden, we want you to have a positive travel experience for your residency. To help you plan ahead and be fully prepared to travel to your next academic residency, follow these helpful tips:

  • Thoroughly read your registration confirmation email for the residency start and end times, what to bring, city information, and important transportation, meals and lodging information.
  • International students – Complete the I-20 and/or F-1 visa process immediately after registering for your U.S. residency (3-4 months in advance of the residency start). If you do not complete this process for your U.S. residency, you will not be permitted to attend. View the SEVIS website for more information.
  • Book your flight making certain you allow enough time for airport transfers before the residency starts and after the residency ends. Avoid scheduling flights that conflict with residency start or end times as it may jeopardize your successful completion of the residency.
  • Reserve a room at the Walden host hotel to save on your room rate, avoid transportation fees and traffic, reduce time getting to and from your residency sessions, and get the most out of your residency experience from convenient networking opportunities.
  • Connect with other Walden residency attendees in Our Community. Sign up as a community member, then search “residency” in the search bar.
  • Download and access the Residency App, which is linked in your residency registration confirmation email approximately two weeks before the residency. The Residency App contains some important information:
    • Maps of Walden’s residency venue(s) and the residency city to help you navigate during your residency stay
    • Safety tips for travelling
    • Medical services available in the local area
  • Plan for meals by packing non-perishable food items, researching local dining options and/or making a trip to a local convenience or grocery store when you arrive. Be sure to set your budget for meals according to dining options near the residency venue. See also Transportation as well as Meals and Lodging within your registration confirmation email.
  • Plan your wardrobe. Dress as you would for professional conferences and other professional meetings; business casual is strongly encouraged.
    • Exception: Plan to wear your WaldenGear on the last day of the residency!
    • Please be aware that room temperatures in meeting rooms at residency venues may vary; therefore, we suggest dressing in layers to allow maximum flexibility in adjusting to the room temperatures.
  • Notify your online instructors of the dates you will be attending the residency. Be sure to work ahead on course assignments and discussion posts because your time attending the residency will be filled with academic sessions, networking, and skill development.