Graduate Division

New Domestic Graduate Student: Post Arrival Checklist

This checklist has been developed as a guide to assist you as you are making plans to start your graduate career at UCIrvine. Below is a listing of key tasks, followed by a detailed checklist.

Section 2


1. Airport Transportation
If flying to southern California, try to obtain a connecting flight to the John Wayne Airport in Orange County (SNA). The airport is located approximately three miles from the campus. If you arriving at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) you can arrange a shuttle for transportation with Prime Time Shuttle which has partnered with our Associated Graduate Students.

2. Families
UC Irvine welcomes student family members into our community. There are a number of services, resources and programs available to student family members. For students with children, click here for more information on childcare.

3. Pay Your Tuition & Fees
There are many ways to pay your fees.

  • Online: Use ZotBill, a feature within ZotAccount. This debits your bank account.
  • In person: Central Cashier’s Office 228 Aldrich Hall (UCI map #111)
  • Mail: Make check payable to UC Regents and include your student ID number. Mail to:
    • Cashiers Office
      228 Aldrich Hall
      Irvine, Ca 92697-1975

Please note that UC Irvine only accepts credit card payments online.

Pay tuition and fees before September 15, 2021. Fees MUST BE PAID on or before the established fee payment deadline.  It is your responsibility to ensure that your fees are paid on time, even when fees are being paid by the department. If your fees are not paid by the deadline, you will be dropped from all of your classes.

4. UC TB Screening and Immunization Requirements

It is the policy of the University of California that all new, incoming undergraduate and graduate students must obtain four required vaccines (or provide evidence of compliance) and complete a TB Risk Screening Questionnaire. Students are strongly encouraged to complete these health requirements prior to arrival on campus for the Fall term. The final dead-line date for incoming graduate students to comply with these requirements is Friday, October 22, 2021. For further information go to

5. Transportation On and Off Campus

  • You will find that there are many resources available to you to get around campus and to off-campus locations.
  • The Anteater Express campus shuttles take passengers around campus and to select destinations off campus. 
  • Here is a guide on getting around Irvine without a car and information on local shopping and recreational resources.

6. Obtain a UCI Parking Permit (off-campus residents)
Parking permits can be purchased from the Parking and Transportation Office. If you drive to campus, you must have a valid permit to park on campus. If you live on-campus, your housing community will provide you with a resident parking permit, valid in resident lots only.

7. Visit Your Academic Program Administrative Office
Introduce yourself to program staff and get any necessary information that they may have for you including information about establishing Residency in California if you aren't already a California resident for purposes of tuition and fee assessment.

8. Obtain Your UCI Campus ID Card
Upload your photo for your Campus ID Card.  ID cards are used to check out library books, and to receive other UCI services.

*Don't forget to bring your UCI student ID card to Campuswide Graduate Student Welcome and Orientation*

9. Attend Campuswide Graduate Student Welcome and Orientation
Plan to attend this orientation for all new graduate students. This event will allow you to meet campus leaders and your fellow new graduate students. You will also learn about expectations, policies, and campus resources.

10. Attend Your School or Department New Graduate Student Orientation
Departments or Schools conduct new student orientation for students within their own programs. Contact your program for more information.

11. Apply for a California Drivers License
If you are from out of state and you plan on driving while you are at UC Irvine, you must get a California drivers license within 10 days of your arrival in California. To start the application and make an appointment visit the DMV website. The closest DMV offices to Irvine are located in Laguna Hills and Costa Mesa.

12. Meet with Your Faculty Advisor/Mentor

  • During your first quarter, it is important to begin to make contact with faculty in your department and meet with your faculty advisor.
  • Each department has different approaches to advising and mentoring, and it is important that you understand the expectations of your academic program. Effective and efficient communications are essential when meeting with faculty.
  • We recommend you use the Graduate Student Individual Development Plan (IDP) as a communications tool with your faculty advisor/mentor.
  • Review information on mentoring.

13. Prepare to Establish California Residency One Year from Now by Starting to Collect Necessary Documents
If you are relocating to California from another state, you will be asked to establish California residency after your first year. Read "10 Things Graduate Students Need to Know" about California residence for purposes of tuition and fees. 


14. Establishing California Residency
If you are relocating to California from another state, you will be asked to establish California residency after your first year by submitting the Petition for Resident Classification. Review "How to Establish Residency" for general guidelines and contact the Assistant Resident Officers to asses your situation. Keep all receipts from your move to validate when you began residing in California.