University of New Hampshire

School of Law

 

The International Student section is designed to make your preparation and transition to student life at UNH Law easier, with information about visas, travel, items to bring, and being a student here. UNH Law is a pleasant and multicultural community that encourages informal, personal interactions. It is a friendly environment and we hope that your stay here – whether one year or three – will be a valuable learning experience.

Hear some of our international students discuss their UNH Law experiences in their native language.

 

Kyungjoo Kim, Seoul, South Korea

 

Kana Yasou, Osaka, Japan

 

Xueying Zhao, Dalian, China

 

Rodrigo Moreno, La Paz, Bolivia

Entering the United States

At your first U.S. port of entry, you will be asked to present your passport, I-20 or DS-2019 and an I-94 Arrival-Departure Card (which you will get from the airline) and submit to a short interview with the immigration officer. Make sure the officer stamps your I-20 or DS-2019 and I-94 card with F-1 or J-1 and D/S for Duration of Status. Your picture and fingerprints will be taken at this time.

Everyone is especially cautious since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, so please pay close attention to what is going on around you. Listen carefully and follow closely all instructions given by security and transportation personnel. Do not leave any baggage unattended in a public place. Do not accept any package from anyone you do not know or someone who is not boarding the plane. Have your immigration documents in a safe but accessible place and have American dollars available for your transit to and your first few days in Concord, NH.

It is a good idea to schedule your arrival in Concord on a weekday, when the school is open. Offices are normally open from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday. If you have any questions, you can reach us at (603) 228-1541.

Applying for a Visa

Apply for a student visa (F-1 or J-1) at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate nearest you. Payment of the SEVIS fee is required before you apply. Go to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement website for more information and to pay the fee. Print a copy of the receipt and bring it to the U.S. Embassy, together with your Form I-20 or DS-2019, a valid passport, original financial statements and other supporting documents. The same goes for your dependents who will come on F-2 or J-2 visas, except that they don't have to pay the SEVIS fee. You will be required to appear for a personal interview when you apply for a student visa.

Some tips for a successful interview

 

Be Courteous
Be friendly and courteous to the consular officer at all times.

 

Speak English if Needed
Be prepared for an interview in English.

 

Ties to Your Community
You must overcome the presumption that you are an intending immigrant by showing strong connections to your home country in the form of property ownership, a job, social/family ties and professional involvement.

 

Be Concise
Be aware consular officers are under considerable time pressure to make a decision quickly, so their first impressions of you are critical. Your responses to the officer's questions should be short, clear and to the point.

 

Who to Bring to Interview
Bring to the interview only those family members who are accompanying you to the U.S.

 

Be Positive
Do not argue with the officer. If you are denied a visa, ask the officer a reason for the denial. If applicable, ask for a list of documentation that you may bring in order to reverse the decision. If you can, get the officer's name.

 

UNH Law Programs
Be prepared to discuss the program you are hoping to pursue in the U.S. and how it can benefit you upon your return to your country.

 

Military Service Questions
For male applicants who are subject to mandatory military service, be prepared to explain how you will comply.

 

Supporting Your Family
For married students whose spouse and children are staying behind, be prepared to address how they will be supported in your absence.

 

Once you have your U.S. visa, keep your passport, financial documents and form I-20 or DS-2019 with you when you first enter the U.S. Do not pack these documents in the suitcase.

Transferring from a U.S. University to UNH School of Law

If you are already in the United States and have been attending another educational institution, we will provide you with a Transfer Form to be signed by you and completed by your current International Student Advisor.

Contact UNH Law's Assistant Dean for Students, Fran Canning to facilitate the transfer of your SEVIS records from your current school to UNH Law.

Changing to F-1 Status

If you are in the United States, on a non-student U.S. visa, you may have to file a Petition to Change Status to F-1 (Form I-539). Contact the international student advisor if you have any questions.  Read more>> Obtaining your student visa

Academics information

Included in the Guide is the 2012-2013 Academic Calendar. The fall semester runs from August to December, after which you will have a month-long semester break. The spring semester runs from January to May. Formal commencement exercises take place in mid-May of each school year. Juris Doctor candidates are required to complete their program before graduation day. Master degree students (LLM, MIP, MCT, MICLJ) must have completed at least 24 credits to qualify to participate in graduation. Graduate students can take the remaining credits required (for a total of 30) at the Intellectual Property Summer Institute (IPSI), Ireland e-Law Summer Institute (ELSI) or an internship for credit which is available to Master of Intellectual Property track students only.

International students are required by immigration law to maintain full-time studies. At UNH Law, full-time status means taking at least 12 credits per semester. Some exceptions apply. If you need to take less than 12 credits in the last semester of your program, you must have a valid medical or academic reason. This also must be approved by the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs and International Student Advisor.

 

Kamal Arvind, Master of Intellectual Property Degree, Bangalore, India

I am much better prepared to handle my day to day assignment at the law firm I am working with. Moreover the master degree helped me to transition from an in-house counsel to a patent agent in a law firm.

The best part about the school was most of the professors have loads of real life experience in their fields by virtue of whether working for a law firm or managing a IP department of large corporations.

The courses and discussions with them helps you a lot in preparing yourself with the challenges of the real world. Specially the patent courses like Patent Law, IP Management, PP1, PP11 and PAPP prepares you to be ready for any kind of job opportunity be it as in-house or in a law firm.

Classes meet once or twice a week for 1 to 3 hours each. Attendance at classes is required, and assignment deadlines are strictly enforced. Some classes will have teaching assistants who help students review for classes. Most professors are willing to meet during designated office hours and an Academic Advisor will be assigned to help each student plan their program. The Academic Success office is available for extra help and support. It is important to seek the help of all resources available when you experience difficulty in any class. Textbooks, study aids, and other educational materials are available in the school bookstore.

The educational system and teaching practices in the United States may be different from your country's norm. The classroom interaction between professor and students is informal and casual, but respectful. Students are encouraged to ask questions and express opinions. Students are called upon by the professor daily, so be prepared for each class. A syllabus describing the course is handed out on the first day of class by the professor. The syllabus lists the assignments due for each class, grading policy and the professor's expectations for each course. Read it carefully, and follow it closely.

In the student handbook, you will find Academic Rules and Regulations that govern the academic functions of UNH Law and a Conduct Code that all members of the community are expected to abide by. Please read these guidelines carefully. Do not hesitate to ask for help and clarification. This is your education and your full participation is expected. Faculty and staff want to help you achieve your educational goals.

Finally, your education at UNH School of Law includes participation in extra-curricular activities and there are many to choose from. Organizations like the Student Bar Association, Student Intellectual Property Law Association, Licensing Executives Society, and American Intellectual Property Law Association are some of the professional organizations that you can join. Activities and events like the Lunar New Year celebration, hosted by Chinese, Taiwanese, Korean, Vietnamese and Singaporean students; Divali, hosted by Indian students; Multicultural Celebration - hosted by the Black Law Students Association and the Hispanic Law Students Association; and the Chat Partner Program are only some of the different activities at UNH Law. We hope you will take advantage of all or some of them.

Other helpful UNH Law web pages

LLM, Master, Diploma & Visiting Scholars

JD Programs


Flags from around the world, UNH School of Law are part of the vibrant global community

Contact Us

Christine Rousseau
International Student Advisor & Housing Coordinator
christine.rousseau@law.unh.edu
(603) 513-5197

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