JMU does not offer any scholarships to international students, aside from the few scholarship that are provided to students once they are accepted at JMU.
Not only to prevent you from carrying large sums of money on you but also to facilitate your transaction of money from your home country and to facilitate your tuition payment and others, you are strongly urged to open a bank account.
While very convenient due to its location on-campus and its ATM machines also located on campus, the Commonwealth One Bank is unfortunately not much of an option for individuals who do not have a Social Security number. Individuals who open a bank account with Commonwealth One Bank without a Social Security number within 90 days will have their account terminated.
For these reasons, and the fact that it has many ATM machines and branches all over the US, Bank of America is the bank of choice for the JMU international student community. During the international student orientations, ISSS arranges to open bank accounts to the Bank of America located downtown or accross from the mall (at the IHOP bus stop). By virtue of working with so many international students in the past, the bank and its staff members are very familiar with the issues that international students are facing.
It is crucial that you ensure that your contact information is updated at all times. When you first opened your account you may have entered a temporary address and phone number (such as the International Students and Scholars Services's address and phone number). If this is the case (or if you moved to a different address make sure to make the necessary corrections on your virtual account by logging in to your bank's webpage.