Center for Global Education


Helping make UW-Whitewater your home.

The Office of International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) assists international students and J-1 exchange visiting scholars during their time at UW-Whitewater. Our office oversees the appropriate application of federal regulations that affect F and J visa holders sponsored by UW-Whitewater. The ISSS also assists in cultural exchange and enrichment of the Whitewater community.

Note: International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) is able to provide you with general guidance. However, any guidance provided to you by ISSS, as well as the information in our materials, should not be construed as legal advice. Due to the fluid nature of governmental interpretation, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security may change its interpretation of immigration laws/regulations and eligibility requirements for benefits at any time. We will do our best to provide you with the most current guidance. Each case is fact-specific and it is advised that you contact an experienced immigration attorney if you have questions regarding our situation.

Global Ambassadors

Global Ambassadors (GAs) are current UW-Whitewater domestic and international students who serve as mentors for new international and exchange students. GAs complement the university’s Peer Mentor program for freshman and transfer students. Like Peer Mentors support students in their transition from high school/prior institution to UWW, GAs help new international and exchange students transition from their home country/culture to the United States.


Two people embrace in a hug.


The GAs assist incoming international and exchange students during orientation and throughout the semester. They hold in-person events for students to meet each other – including kickoff events at the beginning of each semester – and are a constant resource to answer any questions they have.

Previous activities organized by GAs include sand volleyball, game nights, movie nights, and end-of-the-semester dinners. Global ambassadors create connections between students and help them feel at home at UW-Whitewater.

Resources for international students

  • WISP (Whitewater International Student Portal) is where international/exchange students submit/report required immigration compliance materials and request approval for various immigration benefits.
  • Canvas has valuable instructions, updates, and information for international / exchange students and scholars. Log in with your UWW NetID and password.
  • WINS is UW-Whitewater’s portal for academic, director, and billing purposes.
  • UW-Whitewater offers several housing and dining options
  • The HawkCard is an essential form of identification for students when they arrive on campus and throughout their time at UW-Whitewater. International and exchange students will receive an e-mail with instructions before as part of preparation to study at UW-Whitewater so the card is ready when they arrive.
  • UW Credit Union is conveniently located on campus in the University Center for students looking to open a bank account in the U.S.
  • UW-Whitewater’s cashier’s office is very helpful in explaining your university bill and processing payments. For specific information on international payments, please review Flywire.
  • Find an on-campus job through Handshake. International and exchange students are typically allowed to work up to 20 hours per week while classes are in session. Off-campus employment is typically a violation of immigration regulations unless it meets specific regulatory requirements — an example may be an approved credit-bearing internship in the student’s field of study.
  • Find out more about UW-Whitewater’s clubs and organizations and how you can get involved.
  • UW-Whitewater’s Career Services office offers guidance on career opportunities, resume reviews, interviewing tips and practice, and job preparation.
  • UW-Whitewater’s Center for Students with Disabilities provides support, accommodation, and guidance for students with both seen and unseen disabilities to support student success.
  • Tutorial Services provides free tutoring for many courses along with study skills, time management tips, supplemental instruction, and other educational support for free to UW-Whitewater students.


Colorful buildings in downtown Whitewater.


  • UW-Whitewater is in Whitewater, Wisconsin. Outside of campus, the community of Whitewater has many fun services and activities to offer.
  • The Community Space is open to all and shares food, clothing, and other resources with community members. It is also a space to hang out and engage with the Whitewater community.
  • The Whitewater Chamber of Commerce highlights the local businesses that provide unique food and beverage offerings, including local favorites Sweet Spot Café, Cat Café, TeaLux (Boba Tea), Fanatico, La Piazza, and more! Whitewater is also home to a movie theatre that shows popular movies.


A student smiles at the camera as she stands in front of a purple Warhawk shuttle.


The Universities of Wisconsin requires all international and exchange students to have Affordable Care Act compliant health insurance. UW-Whitewater enrolls international and exchange students in the policy each semester and the fees are on each student’s bill.
Learn more about information the Universities of Wisconsin's health insurance policy »

International and exchange students are required to submit tax materials for the period they study in the U.S. The following resources are available:

  • VITA: UW-Whitewater’s accounting department offers a free service that assists in tax preparation for qualified candidates
  • Sprintax is an online software service that helps non-residents file taxes

Are you interested in studying at UW-Whitewater? We encourage you to visit the international admissions page and contact our international admissions officer at


Inviting international exchange visitor as a short-term scholar, researcher, or professor.

The J exchange visitor visa process is quite extensive. The purpose of the program is “to foster the exchange of ideas between Americans and foreign nationals and to stimulate international collaborative teaching, lecturing and research efforts. The exchange of professors and research scholars promotes the exchange of ideas, research, mutual enrichment, and linkages between research and educational institutions in the United States and foreign countries. It does so by providing foreign professors and research scholars the opportunity to engage in research, teaching and lecturing with their American colleagues, to participate actively in cross-cultural activities with Americans, and to, ultimately, share with their countrymen their experiences and increased knowledge of the United States and their substantive fields.” 22 CFR 62.20(b)

The hosting department and department designated counterpart are responsible for the following arrangements.

Please have a plan in place as you make the decision to invite the scholar. Helpful tips can be found below.

  1. Since the J visa is a cultural exchange program, the department is responsible for providing and including the J-1 Exchange Visitor in cultural activities. UW-Whitewater reports these activities to the U.S. Department of State to justify our visiting J-1 Exchange Visitor program. These activities can include: introducing the J-1 Exchange Visitor to the UW system of education through visiting classroom, giving presentations in classes, and taking part in departmental activities, including departmental meetings, outreach programs, etc. This could also include picnics, farmers markets, fine arts performances, visiting U.S. institutions and facilities, etc.
  2. Airport pick up, transportation, settling in, and move-in assistance for the first few days. Return transportation at the end of the J-1 exchange visitor visit after the completion of program.
  3. Assist the J-1 Exchange Visitor and dependents in arranging accommodations and obtaining furnishings for their accommodations.
  4. Provide orientation to UW-Whitewater campus, the Whitewater community, and your department.
  5. Make official introduction(s) at departmental meetings and invite the J-1 Exchange Visitor to attend departmental meetings and activities.
  6. Assist J-1 Exchange Visitor in obtaining a HawkCard.
  7. Assist J-1 Exchange Visitor in setting up a UW-Whitewater email account.
  8. Assist J-1 Exchange Visitor in setting up a U.S. bank account.
  9. Assist and arrange transportation for the J-1 Exchange Visitor to obtain social security number, if necessary.
  10. Ensure that the J-1 Exchange Visitor completes all necessary university requirements – for example, a background check, if required.
  11. Send ISSS the physical address of where the J-1 Exchange Visitor will be living in the United States and every physical address change so ISSS can report to the U.S. Department of State.
  12. Schedule a one-hour immigration orientation and health insurance meeting for the J-1 Exchange Visitor.
  13. Report any violations of the exchange visitor’s appointment to International Student and Scholar Services.

Is your department interested in hosting an exchange visitor? If so, contact the Office of International Student and Scholar Services at

Visa support

Learn more about UW-Whitewater visa support for student enrollment, employment, and non-academic programs with the Visa Support Chart [PDF].

Want to learn more about international student support?

262-472-4992 | | Facebook icon   Instagram icon

More to explore

Center for Global Education

McCutchan Hall
239 Prince Street
Whitewater, WI 53190

Study Abroad

McCutchan Hall, room 204

International Student and Scholar Services

McCutchan Hall, room 220

International Admissions

McCutchan Hall, room 208