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Key Dates

Key dates for incoming students are listed below. In addition, academic calendar dates are available online. 


Mid-March: New student immigration document requests are available for all incoming international students through the Office of International Student and Scholar Services (OISS) Portal. To ensure students receive their F-1 or J-1 Visa in time, please visit the International Office’s website for full details and the deadline.


Early July: Open enrollment for the Northwestern Student Health Insurance Plan (NU-SHIP) runs from July 1-October 1. NU-SHIP provides coverage September 1, 2023 through August 31, 2024. International students (students with an F-1 or J-1 U.S. Visa) are required to maintain enrollment in NU-SHIP for the entire time they are at Northwestern. Students who intend to use NU-SHIP are encouraged to confirm their enrollment via the online form in CAESAR by the last week of August to ensure timely access to benefits. Students also may enroll dependents during the open enrollment period (July 1-October 1), after they have confirmed their own NU-SHIP enrollment in CAESAR.

July 1: The deadline to submit health records, including proof of immunizations, for fall entrants. The penalty deadline for submission of all documents and meeting the requirements is 30 days after the start of classes.


Late August: The Graduate School’s 2023 New Student Orientation will be a hybrid experience with an online, self-paced orientation course in Canvas that will launch on August 21; a series of virtual Q&A sessions in early September (more details will be shared with incoming TGS students in August 2023); a virtual TGS Resource Fair webpage; and an in-person TGS Resource Fair at Norris Center on September 13 from 1:00–3:00 PM. All aspects of The Graduate School's orientation are suggested, not required. 



Early September:

New students can obtain a Wildcard/student ID card. All students are required to submit their ID photo online. Please review the guidelines and upload your photo on the Wildcard Photo Submission page. To obtain your Wildcard, appointments are recommended, but not required. Walk-ins are accepted. You must present a government-issued photo ID (e.g., your driver’s license, state photo ID, or current passport) to claim your card.

September 2: Deadline for official transcripts to be received, reviewed, and verified by The Graduate School.

September 12–13: The Office of International Student and Scholar Services’ (OISS) Graduate International Student Orientation (G-ISO)

September 13: In-person TGS Resource Fair from 1:00–3:00 PM at Norris Center

September 14: 

September 15 (for Students Receiving a Stipend or Being Paid): Students need to enter their Direct Deposit details in myHR anytime between September 15-24.

September 19: Classes begin

September 25: The last day to add a class or change a section. (No reductions are made to bills for dropped or swapped classes after this date. Last day for full tuition refund.)


October 10: First invoice for the academic year is generated. You will receive an email to review your account and pay any balance due by November 1. Even if you are receiving a stipend and full tuition support, you still need to pay the quarterly TGS U-Pass Transit Card Fee if you opted in to receive a U-Pass.

October 27: The last day to drop a class. (No tuition adjustments can be made after September 25.)