International Student Information

Congratulations and welcome to The Sage Colleges

By now you are probably becoming increasingly excited about your travel abroad and are beginning to make the list of items you will be taking with you. Below is a list of important information. We hope this list will be helpful, but please remember it is only a suggestion:

Statue of LiberyArrival to the United States - While most international students will arrive to the United States at a major airport, The Sage Colleges is not near these locations. If you are traveling to The Sage Colleges directly from your home country, you will need to be sure to make your finals destination Albany International Airport in Albany, New York. This is the central airport for both Russell Sage College in Troy and Sage College at Albany. If you will be arriving to the Albany International Airport, then a member of the Cultural Enrichment staff will arrange transportation to campus.

However, if you do not fly into Albany International Airport, you will need to make your own transportation arrangements to campus. John F. Kennedy International Airport, Newark International Airport and La Guardia Airport are all 3 hours away from campus. If you do not get a connecting flight from these airports to Albany, you should consider either a bus through Greyhound or a train through Amtrak to arrive into Albany. You will be financially responsible for these arrangements and transportation. 

Please contact the Office of Cultural Enrichment with your flight and arrival information.


Map of Northeast United States including The Sage Colleges

Map The Sage Colleges is located approximately 150 miles from New York City and Boston, Massachusetts,  240 miles from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and 370 miles from  Washington D.C.


Sage Summer on the Hudson

This 15-credit totally integrated summer course uses the Hudson River as a means to study history, the arts, social, political, economic and environmental issues, and techniques of research. You'll travel up and down the river, test the water, do primary research at the Rensselaer Country Historical Society, learn about the rise and fall of cities, hear the songs, view the paintings, and read the stories that have made the Hudson famous. Click here to find out more.


Orientation 2014

Orientation is mandatory for all new F-1, J-1, and "Green Card"  international students.

Thai students
                                  International Students at Honor Society Induction

You must have the following information with you:

  • Your I-20 or DS-2019 Form
  • Your passport
  • Your I-94 card (should be stapled to your passport)

Books: Books in the United States can be extremely expensive. To save money on the cost of books, most American students purchase their books used. Once you are aware of your course schedule including the course number and section you may order your books before arriving to the Unites States. You will need to purchase these with a credit card, when you place the order, but then you will not need to worry about the cost upon your arrival to the U.S. For students taking classes on the Troy campus click here for the bookstore and for students taking classes on the Albany campus click here for the bookstore. If you are taking classes on both campuses, you will need to order your books from the two campuses where the classes are held.

Medications: If you take any medication, make sure that you will have packed a sufficient supply. Please know that New York State will not fill any prescriptions written from outside of New York State. Have your physician specify whatever medications (including generic names) you are on and the reasons for this prescription on your health form, which you should have received with your admittance package. Be sure to pack some of your prescription in your carry on bag, in case your luggage is delayed in its transport to the United States.

All International students must complete a health survey before arriving to The Sage Colleges. Please download the following form, have your personal physical complete the form and return it to the Office of Cultural Enrichment and Diversity before your arrival.

Student Immunization and Medical History Form (due by December 15, 2013)

International Student Emergency Contact

Clothing: The weather in Central New York State will change significantly while you are on campus for a full semester. From August until December (fall semester) the weather can range from sunny and warm near 80 Fahrenheit (27 Celsius) to 20 Fahrenheit (-7 Celsius). In the spring semester, January until May, the weather generally will range from 10 Fahrenheit (-12 Celsius) to 75 Fahrenheit (24 Celsius). So you will need a wide range of clothing options.

Students (men and women) typically wear casual clothing to class. Students generally wear jeans/pants (shorts in warm weather) and sweaters/sweatshirts (t-shirts in warm weather) and sneakers (tennis or running shoes). There are a few occasions (plays, art exhibits or concerts) for students to dress more formally, a skirt or dress is appropriate for women, blazer or suit jacket for men. A heavy coat, gloves or mittens, hat and scarf are recommended for winter temperatures.

Bedding: The Sage College will provide J-1 and F-1 undergraduate exchange students only living on campus, a set of bedding, towels, alarm clock, and telephone for their rooms. A shopping trip will be planned on the first day of Orientation for students to purchase the items they need.  All new international undergraduate students are required to live on campus.

Each residence hall room is equipped with a twin size bed, a desk with bookshelf and desk lamp, 5 drawer dresser and a closet or wardrobe for each student. You will be expected to launder your bedding throughout the semester.

Currency/Money: Be sure to discuss with your family how to transfer money to you in Troy/Albany, New York from your home if needed. You will need to meet all financial obligations regarding tuition, room and board before your arrival to campus. You will need to have enough money to purchase your books and any personal items you might need. Any traveling you plan to do while living at Sage will require additional funds and you should plan accordingly.

* Never pack large amounts of money in your luggage, due to security reasons.

Weather - The Albany area experiences all four seasons. Resulting in the weather varying from season to season. Temperature ranges from 60° to 85° Fahrenheit (18° to 29° Celsius) in the summer to 0° to 38° Fahrenheit (-17° to 30° Celsius) in the winter.

The Albany, New York area can receive a large amount of snow in late fall throughout winter. During the rest of the year, rain showers can occur unexpectedly, and the humidity level can be uncomfortably high, especially in the summer. Weather conditions are more moderate during the spring and fall.

Shipping Items Prior to Arrival: You may ship boxes or other items to yourself prior to your arrival on campus. Packages should be addressed as follows:

For Russell Sage College:

Your name
c/o The Office of Cultural Enrichment and Diversity
65 1st Street
Troy, New York 12180

For Sage College of Albany:

Your name
c/o The Office of Cultural Enrichment and Diversity
140 New Scotland Avenue
Albany, New York 12208

Please be sure to mark each package International Student and your expected arrival date. The Office will hold these items until your arrival. Please contact the Director of Cultural Enrichment and Diversity via email to let him/her know the number of boxes you are shipping.

Electrical Items: Please note that the Unites States uses 110-112 volt currents (60 cycles) for all electrical items. If you are bringing electrical items with you (hair dryers, computers, and radios) you will need to have the appropriate electrical converter. Please note that the outlets require two flat-pronged and one circular pronged plug.

Personal Items: Please be sure to bring those items which will help you make your room feel like home: photographs of family and friends, addresses and telephone numbers for letters and postcards, music from home, games, musical instruments, spices and other items to help you feel more comfortable. Be sure to bring a few family recipes to cook, share or give to the dinning hall to be made for the entire community.

Visas: International students must have one of two visa types in order to study in the United States. A J-1 visa is for students and scholars visiting the United States for 1 semester or 1 academic year. An F-1 visa is for international students who wish to matriculate at the College and receive a degree from Sage. J-1 U.S visa to enter the United States. You will work with The Sage Colleges' Designated SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) Officer to secure all documentation you will need to apply for your visa. Once you have been accepted to The Sage College and have all appropriate documentation, you must set up an appointment with the U.S. Consulate nearest you to apply for your J-1 or F-1 visa, before you leave for the United States. For more information regarding U.S. Visas you may visit the US Department of States website.

Application Process: If you have not yet been admitted to The Sage College and would like more information on the admissions process please select the college you are interested in:

Russell Sage College for Women (Troy Campus)

Sage College at Albany (Albany Campus)

Sage Graduate School (Both Campuses)

*Attention students planning to drive while in the United States:  To obtain a New York State driver's license, you must have a one year I-20 with at least six months time remaining on the I-20 or you must obtain an International Driver's Permit in your own country before you come to the U.S.


SIFT White Water Rafting

International Students on White Water Rafting Trip