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Common Ground Newsletter: May 2015


Contents: | Things to Do | Welcome | Activate Your User Name | Make It Official: Admission | Like Us on FacebookVISA Reminder: International Students | Who Is Your Advisor? | Important Dates | Helpful Links |

Things to Do: May

  1. Activate OSU Username
  2. Make It Official: Admission
  3. Look for housing
  4. Who is your advisor?
  5. Like us on Facebook

Welcome to your first issue of Common Ground!

Tricia ToothmanBeth BucherCommon Ground is the official newsletter for incoming graduates students to the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. We know you have a lot to do to as you prepare for graduate school, and Common Ground will walk you through the tasks you must complete before you begin autumn semester at The Ohio State University. It also will keep you informed about news and upcoming events. We will send you additional issues of Common Ground as the summer goes on, so keep an eye out!

We look forward to meeting you this autumn. In the meantime, if you have any questions or concerns please contact us:

Patricia Toothman, PhD Program Coordinator,
& Beth Bucher, MS Program Coordinator,
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, or

Activate your user name and email address

First things first: All students planning to attend Ohio State must activate their Ohio State user name. This username is also your Ohio State email address!

You received your username when you applied. Activating your username is one of the most important things you need to do before you accept your admission. Your user name will be a combination of your last name followed by a dot and a number (e.g., name.#). Some people at Ohio State also refer to this as your "dot" number. Your user name will be used across the university for a variety of purposes, including forms, class registration, and accessing various pages of the university website.

As mentioned, when followed by "" this user name is also your Ohio State e-mail address (e.g., ). This is the email address the university and the ECE department will use to contact you for official university business. Get in the habit of regularly checking your email at now so you don’t miss important information this summer.

If you have problems activating your Ohio State user name and email address, contact for assistance.

Let's make your admission official

If you are receiving this newsletter, you have been recommended for admission to the Electrical and Computer Engineering Graduate Program for Autumn 2015, but that’s only the beginning. Your next step is to officially accept your admission offer (Click on "Future Students" and then "Application Status.") Once you log in, you should see the option to accept your admission. If you are an international student, this option is available after the financial review is complete.

It’s important that you accept your admission as soon as possible because this is how a registration appointment will be created for you so that you may enroll in classes for autumn semester. If you don’t accept your admission officially, you may experience difficulty when it comes time to schedule classes. We will cover the class registration process in the June issue of Common Ground, so it is important to complete your official admission acceptance before then!

Like us on Facebook and Twitter

You should definitely take a moment to join the Ohio State ECE community on Facebook and Twitter. Not only will we be posting important updates for incoming students there this summer, but it's a great way to find out about all the great news and events happening in the department.

Visa reminder for international students

Are you an international student? If so, it is important to apply for a visa to study in the United States as soon as you can. Depending on your home country, this process may take anywhere from one to three months. As soon as you have your I-20 information in hand, start preparing to get a visa. If you have any questions regarding your I-20 or what you should be doing, contact the Ohio State's Office of International Affairs.

Who is your advisor?

Great question!

For master's students:

  • Your faculty advisor will be either Assistant Professor of Practice Lisa Fiorentini or Assistant Professor of Practice Wladimiro Villarroel, unless you are aleady working with some other ECE faculty. In this case, that faculty member can advise you.
  • The advisor will be assigned based on your area of research interest.
  • You will receive an email notification about your advisor assignment in early August.
  • If you need advisor information for your visa interview, please contact Assistant Professor Fiorentini or Assistant Professor Villarroel.
  • If you are interested in working with some other faculty in ECE, we encourage you to talk about your options with your faculty advisor after you get to Ohio State.

For Ph.D. students:

  • For PhD students, your faculty advisor is typically the faculty member who extended the financial aid offer to you.
  • If you do not have a faculty advisor, you should plan to actively seek out a faculty advisor by the end of the second semester of enrollment in the ECE graduate program.

Important Dates

ECE Department Orientation: Thursday, August 20, 2015 - 8:15 am to noon, Dreese Lab lobby. RSVP online here.

Graduate School Welcome and Resource Fair: Monday, August 24, 2015, from 8:45 am to noon at the Ohio Union

Office of International Affairs Pre-arrival

Office of International Affairs Check-In and Orientation: Sign up for dates between Aug. 3 and August 24, 2015.


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