Welcome to Caltech!
We are delighted that you will be joining us this year, and look forward to meeting you and working with you over the course of your graduate degree program. The entire campus is ready to welcome you and to help make your transition to Caltech as smooth as possible.
The Institute continues to respond to the pandemic, addressing concerns in the academic, research, and physical environment as they arise. Fall instruction will be in person, and classes are not expected to have a remote option. However, we have developed safe practices for education and research, and have created tools to keep you updated and informed. We expect every graduate student will do what is necessary to care for our community and to stop the spread of this virus. To that end, we have outlined some important information here for you to review and take action.
- The Institute has adopted a vaccine policy that requires all students living in Caltech housing to be vaccinated. Once one or more COVID-19 vaccines have been fully approved by the Food and Drug Administration, COVID-19 immunization will be required of all members of the Caltech community.
Student Vaccination Policy
- The Institute has also adopted a Student Health and Hygiene policy.
Student Health and Hygiene Policy
- Caltech has developed a website with current information on our policies and plans. Please stay connected and check this website regularly.
Caltech Together— Coronavirus Information: Resources and Support
- The Institute does have travel, isolation, and quarantine space for students who will reside on campus and require it. There is a process for accessing this space. Please contact the Housing Office to notify them of your travel plans, so they can guide you on the necessary steps for quarantine.
Calendar and Important Dates
- July 12: Graduate Studies Zoom Drop-in hours (7–9 a.m. PST)
- July 19: Deadline to apply for the New Graduate Student Start-Up Loan
- July 20: Graduate Studies Zoom Drop-in hour (5–6 p.m. PST)
- July 29: Graduate Studies Zoom Drop-in hour (7–8 a.m. PST)
- August 10: Graduate Studies Zoom Drop-in hour (1–2 p.m. PST)
- August 15: Deadline to confirm vaccination status. Students who have not yet been vaccinated must also notify Student Wellness Services (SWS). Students who do not provide proof of vaccination or contact SWS for further instructions will have their registration cancelled.
- August 15: Deadline for forms (Student Patent and Computer Software Agreement, Multimedia Release, W-4). See "Forms" below for information on where to submit the documents.
- August 26: Graduate Studies Zoom Drop-in hour (10–11 a.m. PST)
- September 1: Graduate students begin arriving for fall term; fall health coverage begins
- September 15: Graduate Studies Zoom Drop-in hour (3–4 p.m. PST)
- September 16–18: iBegin@Caltech - International Student Orientation
- September 20–21: Graduate Student Orientation
- September 22: Caltech's annual Teaching and Learning Conference
- September 24: Complete viewing of online Orientation modules
- September 27: Last day to complete the Responsible Conduct of Research course
- September 27: Start of fall term and first day of classes
- October 15: Add Day - Last day to add classes for fall term
- October 15: Deadline for Caltech students to comply with the revised vaccine policy together.caltech.edu/updates/general/08162021
- October 26: First paycheck for students receiving a stipend through Caltech
The Registrar's Office maintains a full online academic calendar and schedule.
The 2021 Orientation program for incoming graduate students will take place September 20–22. The program includes a campus-wide convocation, graduate student information, and our annual Teaching and Learning Conference. The Orientation program will consist of both prerecorded sessions, posted online in early September for asynchronous viewing, as well as live, synchronous events that are presented via Zoom or in-person. That schedule can be found here. Finally, we hope to have some in-person opportunities for people to meet and connect. We will provide more information on that when the time nears.
All students are required to review the prerecorded graduate orientation modules and participate in any events designated as mandatory. The general Orientation program for all new students begins with the Institute Convocation on Monday, September 20th at 10:30 AM and concludes with the Teaching and Learning Conference on Wednesday, September 22nd. International students are also required to participate in iBegin@Caltech, September 16–18, and information can be found on the ISP website. Anyone unable to participate in the required programs regarding Institute policies, Teaching Assistant training, Title IX, and other essential elements of orientation will need to make special arrangements with the Graduate Office to makeup the required sessions. The first day of instruction for Academic Year 2021-22 is September 27, 2021.
Caltech Email Account Setup
All incoming students should have received information regarding your Caltech email account. If you have not received instructions for activating your email, please contact the Registrar's Office.
Responsible Conduct of Research
All new students are required to complete the online course in Responsible Conduct of Research prior to enrollment. Once you have received your Caltech UID, you will be expected to log onto the CITI training site via access.caltech and complete the short training course no later than September 27.
New Student Start-Up Loan
For many students, relocating can incur unexpected costs and often presents a financial burden. To help alleviate this burden, Caltech offers a 0% interest loan of $2,500 to incoming students. The loan funds will be disbursed through the Bursar's Office starting on Monday, September 20, 2021, and repayment begins in April 2022 over the course of 18 months. New students interested in applying for the loan should complete and submit the response form no later than July 19, 2021. Further instructions will then be sent regarding completing the loan documents and the disbursement of funds.
Caltech recognizes that transcripts for the spring term 2020 and beyond may reflect pass/fail or other non-standard grading options, but final transcripts are required from all previously attended colleges or universities. Please arrange for your previous institution(s) to send one copy of your transcript noting any degrees received and the date of conferral to: Office of the Registrar, Mail Code 125-87, Caltech, Pasadena, CA 91125 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Housing (due 5/3/2021)
- New Graduate Student Start-Up (NGSS) Loan application (due 7/19/2021)
- Student Patent and Computer Software Agreement (due 8/15/2021). Send completed forms to the Registrar via email.
- Multimedia Release (due 8/15/2021). Send completed forms to the Registrar via email.
- W-4 (US Citizens and Permanent Residents only) (due 8/15/2021). Send completed forms to the secure Payroll Services dropbox.
- Direct Deposit Students will receive information regarding signing up for direct deposit during the I-9 process.
- I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification - All students who hold a Graduate Teaching or Graduate Research Assistantship are required by law to complete Form I-9 within three business days of the start of employment. Caltech collects information for Form I-9 electronically and instructions will be emailed in the Summer. The documentation required for Section 2 must be reviewed for authenticity by Human Resources or ISP in the case of international students. Examples of acceptable documents can be found on page 8 here.
- Health Forms (due 8/15/2021) Contact Student Wellness Services for questions: MyHealth Portal - Messages > New Message > I want to send a message about my Health Forms. Failure to submit vaccine documentation or contact Student Wellness Services to inform them of your vaccination status by August 15, will result in a cancellation of enrollment.
- Registrar's Office
- Graduate Student Council
- International Student Programs
- Caltech Center for Inclusion and Diversity
- Accessibility Services for Students
- Title IX at Caltech
- Center for Teaching, Learning & Outreach
- Student Wellness Services
- Academic Options Contact List
- The Caltech Community's Statement on Ethical Conduct
- June 2021 Newsletter
- July 2021 Newsletter
- August 2021 Newsletter