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Office of International Student Services
2 East South Street
Galesburg, IL 61401-4999
It's time to plan your travel to Knox! New international students enrolling in the Fall 2017 Term should arrive to campus on Monday, September 4, to participate in our International Pre-Orientation Program. Students participating in the Intensive English Language Program (IELP) should arrive to campus on Saturday, August 19. Learn more here about what to expect when you enter the United States and how to get to campus.
When to arrive
You may enter the United States up to 30 days prior to the program start date listed on your Form I-20 (see "Program of Study"). Some students choose to travel to the U.S. to visit friends or family before traveling to Knox. You should plan to arrive at Knox College on the designated arrival date: August 19 for Intensive English Language Program participants, and September 4 for all other new international students. Please notify the Office of International Student Services if you have any questions or need assistance making your travel plans.
At the U.S. Port of Entry (Passport Control and Customs)
You will need to present your passport, F-1 visa, and Form I-20 issued by Knox College to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer when you enter the United States. The officer may also ask to see your admission letter and evidence of financial resources (copy of Certification of Finances form, bank statements, or other financial documents). Be sure that these documents are easily accessible, and pack them in your carry-on luggage, not your checked luggage. You should also carry a copy of your passport, visa, and I-20 stored separately from the originals.
The CBP officer will take a digital photograph of you and scan your fingerprints. The officer will then stamp your passport and write "F-1" and "D/S". "D/S" means "duration of status," and indicates that you may be present in the U.S. as long as you remain a student in valid immigration status. If the officer does not mark your passport with "F-1" or "D/S," ask the officer about it so it can be corrected immediately.
Transportation to campus will be available on September 4, 2017 (and August 19, 2017 for IELP students), from the Peoria International Airport (PIA), Quad City International Airport-Moline (MLI), the Galesburg Amtrak train station, the Galesburg bus station, or the Bradley University Student Center. Once you've finalized your travel plans, please submit your travel information through your student portal.
If you're coming by plane to the U.S., you may fly into Peoria International Airport (PIA) or Quad City International Airport-Moline (MLI). Both airports are about 40 minutes from the Knox campus, and transportation to campus is available on September 4 (August 19 for IELP students). Alternatively, you can fly into O'Hare International Airport (ORD) in Chicago, and come to Galesburg by train or to Peoria by bus. Please see below for information about arriving by train or bus.
Each day, several trains from Chicago stop at the Galesburg Amtrak station. If you fly into O'Hare airport (ORD) and want to take the train to Galesburg, you will need to take the blue CTA (Chicago Transit Authority) line from O'Hare to the Clinton Station. The blue line ticket will cost $5 and you can purchase it at the airport with cash or a credit or debit card. At Clinton Station, get off the train and walk north for two blocks on Clinton Street. Head east (turn right) onto Jackson Street, and after one block, head north (turn left) onto Canal Street. You'll see Union Station on your right. At Union Station, you can take an Amtrak train to Galesburg. You can purchase a ticket online by searching for a route between Chicago (CHI) and Galesburg (GBB). Please note: the blue line CTA trip from O'Hare to Union Station will take about 1 hour and 15 minutes, and the last Amtrak train from Chicago to Galesburg usually leaves at 17:55. If you decide to take the train to Galesburg, please keep this in mind as you're scheduling your travel. Transportation to campus will be available from the Galesburg Amtrak station on September 4 (and August 19 for IELP students).
If you fly into O'Hare, you can take the Peoria Charter Coach Company bus to the Bradley University Student Center in Peoria. You can also take a Greyhound bus to Galesburg from Chicago, St. Louis, and select other cities. The Greyhound Bus will stop at the Galesburg Bus Depot and Amtrak Station. Transportation to Knox from the Galesburg Bus Depot, Amtrak Station, or Bradley University Student Center will be available on September 4 (August 19 for IELP students).
If you're coming to campus by car, take a look at our directions to campus. Rental cars are available at most major airports. Please note that auto insurance is required to drive a car in Illinois, and ensure you are familiar with the Illinois Rules of the Road.
We welcome any family who plan to accompany you to Knox and look forward to meeting them! Please let us know if any of your family is traveling with you on the arrival form on your student portal.
If you will arrive early to Galesburg, or have family accompanying you, you'll need to make a reservation at a hotel in Galesburg. View information on local accommodations. Meals for new students are not provided on campus until orientation programs begin, so be prepared to enjoy many of the exciting restaurants within walking distance of campus if you will arrive early.
Please contact Rebecca Eckart in the Office of International Student Services by e-mail or phone at +1 309-341-7163.
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