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Incoming Student FAQ for the Fall 2021

We are looking forward to welcoming you to your new home away from home this August! Of course you have a lot of questions about arrival, orientation, and the semester start so we will do our best to answer many of your questions here. You will also receive a wealth of information during the virtual Freshie Journey starting the second of August.

When it comes to COVID-19, Jacobs University has been very fortunate to have only had a small number of minor infections among students and staff. We also have been able to maintain a certain level of in-person teaching and research throughout the pandemic. The health and safety of our community remains a top priority, so you will find a great deal of Coronavirus-related information here. We will provide the current state regulations, but please be sure to check back often as this is obviously a dynamic situation and regulations frequently change. 

If you have a question that is not answered here, feel free to contact our Student Service Center at studentservice [at] jacobs-university.de

See you soon!

FAQ

General

Is Jacobs University the right place for me during these challenging times?

Most definitely! While these are difficult times, the university is and will remain an inspiring place. Professors will maintain high academic standards while making students feel supported. Students will still get early research opportunities. And you will still feel like an important part of a tight-knit campus community of friends and support staff from around the world.

When will the Fall 2021 Semester start?

Classes will begin on September 1.

What will orientation be like?

Most of the "Freshie Journey" will be online. There will be a number of modules that provide you practical information on topics such as using your campus card and semester ticket, registering for classes, living in a multicultural environment, banking and insurance in Germany, and many more. There will also be live Q&A sessions each Friday. Additionally, we have planned a number of in-person activities on August 31. See here for more information.

Your Campus Net login credentials will be sent to you by July 31 (as long as you have submitted your study contract) so that you can access the Freshie Journey modules on August 2.

When is course registration? How do I register for courses?

Course registration opens on August 25. Students will receive their Campus Net login credentials by July 31, and the Freshie Journey will contain a module about course registration.

What will be the teaching format for the start of the semester?

Courses for all Jacobs students begin on September 1st.

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS:
In general, all courses will begin in-person. First-year students who are still in quarantine will be able to follow the courses from their rooms (e.g., online teaching, blended learning, upload of materials and/or videos). This hybrid-mode will last until September 15th. From September 16th, all classes will be taught in-person only.

GRADUATE STUDENTS:
The teaching format for the programs Data Engineering (MSc), Data Science for Society and Business (MSc) and Supply Chain Management (MSc) will be hybrid (online and in-person). The MSc in Psychologie will take place only in-person.
• OFFICIAL ARRIVAL: Official Arrival Day for all students is August 30, 2001. All students who already received their visa or do not require a visa to study in Germany should arrive to Bremen, Germany by that day. If quarantine is required, early arrival is possible on August 20, 2021.
• EXCEPTIONAL LATE ARRIVAL: Students from the Graduate Programs DE, DSSB and SCM who do not receive their visa by the time the fall semester begins will be able to start the Fall Semester 2021 online.
Please note that hybrid teaching (online & in-person) will only be available for students of the specified graduate programs for the Fall Semester 2021. The Spring Semester 2022 will only be in-person.

Since the situation is obviously very dynamic, the information outlined above for undergraduate and/or graduate students is subject to change.

When do I get to choose the college I want to live in?

The procedure for the Housing Preference Survey is described on your VIP page under Optional Tasks.

Arrival

When should I arrive?

INTERNATIONAL FOUNDATION YEAR AND UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS:

August 20 is the arrival date for students who require quarantine time. As of August 15, that means individuals coming from a “high risk area” or an “area of variant concern” as designated by the Robert Koch Institut.
NOTE THE CHANGE: There now are only two RKI categorizations and both require quarantine. Therefore, a student coming from a "high risk area" should try to arrive on Aug. 20 if travel has not already been booked.

August 30 is the arrival date for students arriving from all other areas not on one of the RKI lists.
We will be prepared to welcome you on these dates and ask that you not arrive outside of your designated date.

Although classes begin on September 1, we have extended the deadline for students to begin courses in-person until September 15, at which time students should already be on campus and have fulfilled quarantine requirements.

Please note that there will be no in-person events or activities on the Jacobs campus until Aug. 31.

GRADUATE STUDENTS:
Students who have received their visas or do not require a visa to study in Germany should arrive to Bremen, Germany by August 20. The latest possible arrival day for Fall 2021 is September 1.
Students who have not received their visa by the time the fall semester begins will be able to start the Fall Semester 2021 online. Please note that you should arrive to Bremen for in-person classes by the beginning of the Spring Semester 2021 at the latest.

If booking far in advance, we recommend students book tickets that have no change fees, if possible. That way if a country's RKI status changes or the airline changes a flight, you have the ability to rebook for the appropriate date.

For the current RKI lists, see here

Do I need to give my arrival information to someone?

You will find an arrival survey on your VIP page starting July 12. Please fill out the survey as soon as you have your travel information, but no later than July 31.

Are my parents allowed to come with me?

We know your family members may want to make sure you arrive safe and sound to your new home away from home, so we of course will allow them to accompany you onto campus. However, due to the pandemic, we will not be able to provide a welcome area this year for family members, and we need to restrict access to all buildings to students and staff only. Our peer counselors will be ready to assist you with your move-in.

Please understand any accompanying relatives need to comply with state quarantine and testing requirements, and Jacobs University will not be able to provide quarantine accommodations or resources for family members.

What documents do I need to bring with me when I travel to Germany and the Jacobs Campus?

Remember to bring your:

✓ Signed Study Contract (German version)
✓ Color copy of your passport
✓ Certified copy of your final transcript + diploma
✓ Proof of COVID vaccination or recovery or negative test result
Enrollment Confirmation Letter from your VIP page
Airline Letter (only for students who come from non-visa countries; will be available on your VIP page by August)
✓ Other documents you need for e.g. residence permit, health insurance, bank account, etc.

The Enrollment Confirmation Letter states that your physical presence on campus is required.

The Airline Letter states that a return ticket within 3 months is not required. You may need to give this to your airline.

What should I pack to bring to Jacobs?

You can find a recommended packing list here.

What do I need to observe when clearing customs in the EU?

Upon your arrival in the European Union (be it Germany or another country), please keep the following in mind:

Cash amount of 10 000 Euro or more
If you bring more than 10 000 Euro (or equivalent in other currencies, bonds, shares or travellers’ cheques or other valuables) in cash, you need to declare it at customs. Usually, you will be required to file a declaration form before entry. You can request this declaration form from the airline staff or upon landing before clearing customs. Failure to declare the cash may result in confiscation of your assets. We suggest not bringing large sums of cash, unless absolutely necessary (e.g. if this is a condition to your visa approval)

Bringing Brand-New Packed Goods
Be it your laptop or a fancy camera or the PSP 5, please refrain from bringing the goods in their original package as they may be considered not a personal item, but rather an import. In this case, you will be required to pay the VAT (20% in Germany). The goods may be seized by customs until you pay the VAT. Therefore, consider bringing such items unpacked.

How do I travel to campus?

Please click here for more information.

Where do I go once I get to campus?

We will have signs and peer counselors at the front gate directing you to Welcome Street at our Sports and Convention Center (SCC). There you will check in with our Student Service Center, sign your housing contract, and get your room keys.

COVID-19

What are the COVID-19 regulations for entering Germany?

You can find the latest information from the German Federal Ministry of Health here.  Please note that regulations frequently change.

As of August 15:
- All travelers entering Germany must provide a negative test result, proof of recovery from COVID-19, or proof of vaccination.
- Registration required: Persons entering the country after spending time in a high risk area or area of variant concern are obliged to fill out the digital entry registration on entry and carry the confirmation with them when entering the country.
- NOTE THE CHANGE: There now are only two RKI categorizations and both require quarantine. All travelers from high risk areas require a 10-day quarantine that can be reduced to 5 days with a negative COVID-19 test.
- At the moment, a travel ban is in effect for individuals from areas of variant concern.
- Fully vaccinated individuals (14 days past all required doses) or those who have recovered from COVID-19 do not have a test or quarantine requirement. This does NOT apply if they are coming from an area of variant concern. All individuals arriving from areas of variant concern must do a mandatory 14-day quarantine regardless of vaccination status, COVID recovery within the last 6 months, or negative COVID-19 test result.

For the current RKI lists, see here

Will I need a COVID-19 test?

As of July 31, travelers must provide a negative COVID-19 test to enter Germany, unless they provide proof of vaccination or recovery from COVID-19 within the last 6 months.

What kind of COVID-19 tests are accepted in Germany?

Both PCR tests and rapid antigen tests are accepted. A list of approved rapid antigen tests that meet the requirements of the Robert Koch Institute for entry can be found here. A test result must pertain to a test taken no more than 72 hours (PCR test) or 48 hours (antigen test) prior to arrival in Germany. If individuals have arrived from a virus variant area, the antigen test result may not be more than 24 hours prior to arrival.

Tests can be submitted in the following languages: German, English, French, Italian or Spanish in written or digital form.

Will I need to go into quarantine?

As of August 15:

Individuals who have visited a high risk area or an area of variant concern in the last 10 days (transit does not count) are required to quarantine:

High risk area: Require a 10-day quarantine that can be reduced to 5 days with a negative COVID-19 test. This requirement does not apply to individuals who provide proof of vaccination or COVID-19 recovery.
Areas of variant concern: Require a 14-day quarantine that cannot be reduced. There are currently no exceptions for vaccinated individuals.

What are risk countries?

For the Robert Koch Institut's list of high risk areas and areas of variant concern, see here.

Do I need to be vaccinated prior to arrival?

As of August 15, a vaccination is required to enter Germany, unless a traveler can show the "urgent need" to enter. Students can show "urgent need" by showing their Enrollment Confirmation Letter and student visa (or Airline Letter for those who do not require a visa). This states that your presence on the Jacobs campus is required. The Enrollment Confirmation Letter and Airline Letter (if applicable) can be found on the VIP page.

For students interested in getting vaccinated, the university has arranged for on-campus vaccinations during the months of September and October.

Which vaccines are recognized in Germany?

As of July 31, the vaccines recognized in Germany are Moderna, Pfizer / BioNTech, Astra Zeneca/Covishield, and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson). The list is subject to change at any time. Currently, further vaccines are under review and in consideration for recognition in Germany as well. To see a current list of approved vaccines and vaccines under review, please see here.

How do I provide proof of vaccination or recovery from COVID-19?

Proof of vaccination:
Travelers can show proof of full vaccination in written (e.g. CDC card) or digital form issued by the authorized institution (a cellphone photograph of the vaccination certificate is not sufficient) . The vaccine used must be recognized by the Federal State of Germany. All recognized vaccines can be found here. Travelers must have received all necessary doses at least 14 or more days prior to arrival. Vaccinated travelers must additionally show no relevant symptoms.

Proof of full vaccination must be provided in German, English, French, Italian, or Spanish.

The following information must be provided:
• Personal data of the vaccinated person (surname, first name, date of birth)
• Date of vaccination, number of vaccinations
• Name of the disease vaccinated against
• Characteristics that include the name of the institution or person issuing the certificate (stamp, or official symbol of the name of the issuer)

Proof of recovery
Proof of infection with COVID-19 can be evidenced with a positive test (PCR, PoC-PCR or other nucleic acid amplification test methods). The test can be provided in written or digital form in German, English, French, Italian or Spanish, and must be taken at least 28 days but no more than six months prior to the point in question.

Information is updated regularly. Please be sure to check the information provided by the German Federal Ministry of Health here.

Can I get tested on campus?

A testing site will be set up on campus by the time students arrive for fall semester. For those students who require testing to be released from quarantine after 5 days, instructions on where and how to test will be provided.

Where can I carry out my quarantine upon arrival in Bremen?

STUDENTS WITH ON-CAMPUS ACCOMMODATION:
In addition to the early arrival option that is available starting August 20, 2021, we have decided to provide all students living on campus, who need quarantine support, with a free quarantine package – if they wish. The quarantine package provided by Jacobs University includes meal deliveries three times a day and a COVID-19 test, when needed. If you wish to make use of the quarantine package offered by Jacobs University, please fill out the housing preference survey by August 1, 2021.

Students living on-campus who prefer to provide for themselves during quarantine are of course not required to use the quarantine support provided by Jacobs University and are free to self-quarantine.

Please note that there will be no in-person events or activities on the Jacobs campus until Aug. 31.

STUDENTS WITH OFF-CAMPUS ACCOMMODATION:
Students who booked off-campus housing at the "Galileo Residence" may quarantine in their respective room.

Students who did not book off-campus housing through Jacobs University should secure their own quarantine accommodations.

How will I get food while I am in quarantine?

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS:
If you opt for our free quarantine package, our catering service, Apetito, will deliver meals to your room if you require quarantine. We will ask if you have specific food restrictions when you check in at Welcome Street. If you choose not to receive the quarantine package, you should utilize an online food ordering or grocery service such as Lieferando or Gorillas.

GRADUATE STUDENTS:
We are unable to provide food to you during quarantine. Please utilize an online food ordering or grocery service such as Lieferando or Gorillas.

Do I need to fill out any forms before arriving in Germany?

Travelers coming from high risk areas and areas of variant concern must register online prior to their arrival in Germany at www.einreiseanmeldung.de and have the proof of registration with them on entry.

If I already quarantined at another location after arriving in Germany, can I move about freely on the Jacobs University Campus immediately upon arrival?

Students who can prove they have carried out their quarantine requirement at another location after entering Germany will be allowed to fully join campus life once they fully check in with Student Services.

Please note that there will be no in-person events or activities on the Jacobs campus until Aug. 31.

What if I book a flight in order to arrive on August 20 but then quarantine is no longer required for travelers from my country by August?

Please be sure to frequently check RKI for your country's status: no risk, risk area, high incidence area, virus variant area, as Jacobs University expects you to abide by the federal requirements regarding quarantining at the time of your travels.

Due to the volatility of the situation surrounding COVID-19, we recommend booking a flight that has no change fees. If there are any changes made regarding your arrival, you should resubmit your pre-arrival survey (VIP page), so we are still prepared to accommodate you.

Please note that there will be no in-person events or activities on the Jacobs campus until Aug. 31.

What measures are in place to keep the campus community safe and healthy?

Keeping our community safe and healthy is a top priority.

Jacobs University has a coronavirus task force with representatives from all key departments that meets weekly and monitors available data and developments, decides on appropriate measures, and oversees their implementation. This includes gathering information and recommendations from the "World Health Organization", the "Robert Koch Institute", one of the most important bodies for the safeguarding of public health in Germany, and the "Gesundheitsamt Bremen" (Bremen’s Health Office).

All students, faculty, and staff are expected to comply with the university hygiene concept and state regulations.

For questions regarding COVID-19 regulations on campus, please be sure to read the Current Corona Regulations on Campus as well as the General Coronavirus FAQ.

I was vaccinated with a vaccine that is not yet recognized in the EU/Germany. Can I get vaccinated again in Germany with a recognized vaccine? Can I get the first dose of my vaccine in my home country and the second one in the EU/Germany?

Jacobs University Bremen is not authorized to provide advice on the topic of vaccination. Individuals are encouraged to speak to their healthcare providers and become informed on the topic of vaccination in Germany. Further information on vaccines and resources regarding COVID-19 can be found on the German Federal Ministry of Health website.

Vaccinations will be offered on-campus during the months of September and October. Please see the question below for more information.

Please note that many vaccines have not been authorized/recognized in Germany/the EU. In this regard, Jacobs University will not recognize these vaccines. Therefore, we advise that you carefully review the quarantine and testing regulations before your arrival in Germany/the EU.

Should I still get vaccinated in my home country if the vaccine is not recognized in the EU/Germany?

Jacobs University Bremen is not authorized to provide advice on the topic of vaccination. Individuals are encouraged to speak to their healthcare providers and become informed on the topic of vaccination in Germany. Further information on vaccines and resources regarding COVID-19 can be found on the German Federal Ministry of Health website.

Vaccinations will be offered on-campus during the months of September and October. Please see the question below for more information.

Please note that many vaccines have not been authorized/recognized in Germany/the EU. In this regard, Jacobs University will not recognize these vaccines. Therefore, we advise that you carefully review the quarantine and testing regulations before your arrival in Germany/the EU.

What is the EU Digital COVID Certificate?

The EU Digital COVID Certificate is a digital certificate that is valid in all EU countries which allows individuals to show proof that they have either been vaccinated, have a current negative COVID-19 test result, or have recovered from COVID-19.

The digital certificate is available in English and is considered safe to use by the German Federal State. For further information on the EU Digital Certificate, click here.

What happens if I receive a vaccine that is not officially recognized in Germany? Will my vaccine be recognized on campus?

If your vaccine is not currently recognized in Germany, you will be expected to comply with the requirements outlined above for unvaccinated persons.

Additional vaccines are currently being reviewed for approval in Germany. Please be sure to stay up-to-date on currently recognized / approved vaccines here.

If you are interested, a local doctor is offering the Johnson & Johnson vaccination on-campus for students already vaccinated with a vaccine not recognized within the EU. See the question below for more information.

Can I get vaccinated on campus?

The university has coordinated with a local doctor to provide on-campus vaccinations for students during the months of September and October.

• BioNTech Pfizer (2 doses) to students who have not yet received any doses.
• Johnson & Johnson (1 dose) to students who have already been vaccinated but with a vaccine not recognized within the EU.
• To be decided by the doctor: Students who have already received one dose of an EU recognized vaccine that requires two doses (BioNTech Pfizer, Moderna, or Astra Zeneca).

The deadline to register was July 30, but if you are still interested, please email healthinfo@jacobs-university.de to find out your options.

Completing Application and Enrollment Requirements

What do I do if I cannot take the SAT, ACT, or TestAS before the fall semester is supposed to begin?

Due to the pandemic, students can finalize applications without a standardized test and could receive conditional admission to Jacobs University. To enroll, the SAT, ACT, or TestAS is still required. Therefore, applicants or admitted students who still need a standardized test should take one of these tests by July 2021. Should it not be possible to take a test by July 2021 due to extraordinary circumstances (e.g. closure of test center due to the pandemic), the applicant is required to provide proof of test cancellation (e.g. an official email from the test center). Please forward proof of the cancellation to Admissions (admission@jacobs-university.de) so they can advise you on how to proceed.

When should I get health insurance?

Students should have valid health insurance before arriving in Germany. For information on your options, see here.

How do I get health insurance?

You can find information and links to apply here.

When will I get my study contract?

You will find a link to your study contract on your VIP page a few days after you pay your enrollment deposit.

What if I cannot get a visa by the time the fall semester begins?

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS:
The university is currently assessing the impact of embassy closures and visa delays due to the pandemic on our incoming students. If any changes will be made to the planned in-person teaching format for the start of the fall semester, students will be informed by the first week of July.

If students are unable to start in fall 2021 but are interested in beginning their studies in fall 2022 instead, they can contact Admissions (admission@jacobs-university.de) to request to be considered for a future Jacobs intake. This may involve a simplified process to reapply.

GRADUATE STUDENTS:
We are offering a hybrid teaching format for Fall Semester 2021. Students who do not receive their visas by the time the fall semester begins will be able to start the Fall Semester 2021 online.

Please note that hybrid teaching (online & in-person) will only be available for Fall Semester 2021. The Spring Semester 2022 will be in-person only.

Additional FAQ specifically regarding COVID-19 can be found here.