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​New Student Arrival Information - Accepted Students


Confirmation of Enrollment:

Once you have received the F-1 visa, please confirm your enrollment at College of the Desert or the Intensive English Academy by emailing:  knelson@collegeofthedesert.edu.  Please include your:
  • Full name (first name, last name)
  • Country of citizenship
  • Program at our college:  indicate "College of the Desert" or "Intensive English Academy" 
  • Date of F-1 visa approval.  
It is important that we receive this information as soon as possible to confirm your enrollment and prepare for your arrival.

Health Clearance Requirement:

Students who have been applied to College of the Desert or the Intensive English Academy are required to submit a completed Health Clearance Form before acceptance.  
Students must submit their completed Health Clearance Form before arrival to knelson@collegeofthedesert.edu or by fax to 001-760-862-1361 before arriving for orientation.  
Please make sure to complete this requirement early when applying to our program. 
Please click here to download the Health Clearance Form.


New students at the Intensive English Academy and College of the Desert must attend our mandatory International Student Orientation Program.  During this orientation, you will learn important information about class registration, US immigration laws, and take the English and/or math tests that are required for course placement.
Orientation is mandatory to attend College of the Desert or Intensive English Academy.

College of the Desert students
Fall 2015 COD Orientation:  August 25th, 2015     

In addition, all newly enrolled international students on the F-1 visa are required to enroll in an 6-week orientation course in their first semester at College of the Desert.  The course is listed as COUN-061:  College Success for International Students.  This .5 unit course will help you in your transition to an American education. 

Intensive English Academy students
September 2015 Session IEA Orientation:  August 31st, 2015

Traveling to Palm Desert: 

We are unable to offer airport pickup.  The Palm Springs Airport is located only a short drive from College of the Desert.  Students can transfer to a domestic flight from Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Dallas, Denver and other international airports in the US.  Airlines that fly into Palm Springs Airport include:  United Express, American Airlines, Delta, Alaska Airlines, Continental, and America West.   

Please note: The International Education Programs Office hours are Monday - Thursday 8:30am - 5:00pm; closed after 12:00pm Fridays.  College of the Desert is not open on the weekends.  If your arrival is on the weekend or after hours, please take a taxi to the recommended hotel, Best Western Plus Palm Desert.  

We recommend the Best Western Plus Palm Desert, a hotel close to the College of the Desert campus. Taxis are available directly outside the baggage claim area at Palm Springs Airport.  Please ask the taxi driver to take you to:

Best Western Plus Palm Desert
74695 Hwy 111
Palm Desert
(760) 340-4441

Please let the hotel staff know that you are a student at College of the Desert when you check-in in order to get the corporate rate.
From Los Angeles Airport, take the 405 Freeway North. Change to the 10 Freeway East towards San Bernardino.  Continue for about 2 hours until you reach the Palm Springs area.  Exit at Monterey Avenue and turn right on Monterey.  The entrance to the College of the Desert campus is on the left side of Monterey Avenue.  The International Student Office is located in the Cravens Student Services Center which is the 2-story building that you will see when you enter the campus.  Please download our campus map for information on our location and parking.


Housing is an important part of the international student's experience in the USA.  Although we do not have on-campus housing at College of the Desert, International Student Placements (ISP) will be happy to assist you in being placed with a local host family. 

College of the Desert has begun partnering with International Student Placements (ISP) to insure the best possible housing placement services for our students.

For the 2016-17 academic year, the International Education Program is excited to announce that we are starting a partnership with the International Student Placements (ISP) homestay organization. We are confident that this partnership will allow us to provide even more comprehensive and supportive homestay placement services for our students. If you are interested in living with one of our excellent local host families, please contact knelson@collegeofthedesert.edu.​​

We look forward to welcoming you to our beautiful campus!