"I'm considering staying in Harrisonburg for summer 2020. What are my options?"

On Campus:

  • Summer housing contracts will be available on April 15 and are available throughout the summer.
  • The preferred deadline for Summer Session #1 is May 11.
  • Room rates and/or meal plan costs have not been decided yet. Last year, rooms were $100 per week.
  • There is one week between Spring semester and Summer Session #1 when students will not be able to reside on campus.
  • Summer housing will be in Wayland Hall this summer.
  • Contact Info: Dawn Ohanessian, Assistant Director, University Housing | 540-568-4663

Off Campus:

  • Use the Off-Campus Housing website to search for subleases or roommates.
  • sublease is the renting of an apt., or section of an apt., from the students who signed and pay the full time lease to another person/student for a portion of the existing lease contract. Subleases are particularly popular over the summer as domestic students typically do not stay in Harrisonburg over the summer and are looking for individuals to occupy their apt./room and pay for the rent accordingly.
  • The website features a specific search engine for finding roommates and subleases, for posting and for responding to a listing. Don’t forget to take advantage of the Resources section of the webpage.
  • Contact Info: Off Campus Life Office | Festival Room 1130 | (540) 568-6071

The Residence Inn by Marriott offers suites for students looking for short term housing (1 week – 6 months).

  • Pricing is done on a tiered system, with rates being cheaper per night the longer you stay. (For a general idea, many longer term semester stays would average around $109.00 per night.)
  • 1 – 2 bedroom suites are available and include a kitchen, dishware, and other necessities. A grocery delivery service is also offered.
  • Contact Info: (540) 437-7426 | 1945 Deyerle Ave. (off of University Blvd.)


  • Register for JMU summer classes
  • Summer 2020 registration begins March 23, for all JMU students
  • All Summer 2020 dates/deadlines can be found at the Registrar
  • Cost is $1,012 per credit hour for online classes
  • You can start placing classes in your shopping carts and finish enrolling the week of March 23.

At another institution:

  • To take a course at another institution for transfer credit, obtain prior approval from the appropriate department where the course belongs and complete the Transfer Credit Approval Form.
  • Make sure to read over the general transfer policies you must follow.
  • The other institution may ask you to submit a letter saying that you have a valid F-1 record that will stay at JMU. Email ISSS for this letter.
  • Contact Info: Hannah Dillenbeck, International Academic Advisor, University Advising | Roop Hall, Room 200 | (540) 568 – 5057 | Click here to schedule an appointment.

On Campus

Over the summer (and over other breaks), you can work up to 40 hours per week.

  • To look for job postings, go to JMU Joblink to look for any current job postings on campus (only the ones listed as “- IE” are the ones you are eligible to apply and work for)
  • To look for job postings to work for Aramark/Dining Services, go to Aramark’s website and look for “Hourly and Seasonal” under Worker Type in the job description
  • Contact Info: ISSS@jmu.edu | ISSS: On-Campus Employment webpage

Off Campus

  • You need authorization to work off-campus and the work must be related to your major.
  • You need to apply at least 90 days prior to your employment start date to get OPT authorization.
  • If you are receiving credit from a course (such as an internship course or an independent study) related to your major or your major requires you to do an internship, you may be eligible for the CPT work authorization.
  • Contact Info: Marlee Meikrantz Sharp, Associate Director, CGE International Student & Scholar Services | (540) 568-7172 | ISSS: Off-Campus Employment webpage
"I am considering leaving Harrisonburg over the summer."
Self Storage

If you are not packing all of all belongings with you, you will need to figure out where to store your belongings until you come back to Harrisonburg/JMU. If you rent a storage unit, consider renting it with other friends to split space and the cost of the storage unit. Transportation costs may factor in as well.

Travel Signature
  • Make sure to get your I-20 signed prior to your departure out of the country.
  • The CGE International Student Scholar Services (ISSS) office is open summer-long:
    • Monday through Thursday from 8 am - 5 pm and on Fridays from 8 am - 12 pm.
    • Please note: Due to the global health crisis affecting the US this summer, the ISSS team is working remotely and will not be in their CGE offices. Please email isss@jmu.edu if you need a travel signature and to plan for your travel and re-entry to the US.
What should I do over the breaks?

This question will be especially relevant to those of who of you who will be living on-campus since the residence halls do close during the (Thanksgiving, Winter and Spring) breaks.

Ask Your Friends/Roommates what their plans are and if you could join them! Don't be intimidated to ask them because it is common to join a friends’ family to celebrate Thanksgiving and other holidays in U.S.

  • Option #1: Simply ask “Hey, what are you doing for Thanksgiving?“
  • Option #2: Explain your situation and ask for suggestions: “I don't have a family here in the States. Do you have any idea where I could go during the break?”
  • Option #3: Be straight forward! Ask them “I would love to experience a traditional Thanksgiving celebration with an American family, so do you think I can come over to your place for the break?”

Many will be happy to have you join them and/or offer some suggestions for you.

Take this time to explore the US and spend your break with your new classmates. Travelling in group will reduce your hotel and transportation costs. As you plan a trip consider, staying at a hostel and/or Airbnb especially if you are concerned about money – They tend to be cheaper than hotels.

JMU’s Community Service-Learning office offers Alternative Break Programs which allows groups of JMU students to volunteer their time and make a difference for a specific cause. You can choose the trip based on the cause or the destination of your choice.

If these options fail, stop by the CGE office (if we are open) or contact ISSS at isss@jmu.edu, as we may be able to offer other suggestion!

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