Carnegie Mellon University

Things Every Incoming MSIT-PE Student Needs to Know

Welcome to Carnegie Mellon; we are glad you have accepted our offer of admission!

Welcome to Carnegie Mellon University!  We are very excited that you will be a student in the Master of Science Information Technology Privacy Engineering Program and the CMU Community.  Before you arrive on campus, we want to bring your attention to several important items from a variety of departments.  A great place to start is The HUB.  The HUB is Carnegie Mellon's Student Service Center and is the best starting point to find answers to a variety of questions including, tuition and fees, registration and grades, financial aid, the academic calendar, and much more.  Another helpful resource for new students is the Settling In Guide.  This guide has been written to help various international populations adjust and get to know Carnegie Mellon University, however, it is also very helpful to ALL new students!  Also, please take the time to review the Privacy Engineering Handbook, which will give you more information on the program and your responsibilities.  We will go over the handbook in depth during the orientation.

Carnegie Mellon University will host the University Graduate Student Orientation for all new graduate students.  The program and registration information is available on the Graduate student page.  Questions about this orientation can be addressed to  In addition, international graduate students are required to participate in the Office of International Education's (OIE) orientation program.  This orientation is mandatory for all international students enrolled at Carnegie Mellon University.  If you miss this orientation please get in contact with the MSIT PE program coordinator and she can assist you with rescheduling.

Newly admitted students will need their student ID number (SID) as entered into the student information system (SIS) as well as their Andrew userID and password to access all secure sites at Carnegie Mellon University.  This includes the Student Information Online system (SIO) where students can access electronic bills (E-Bills), account activity, course schedule, and grades (if applicable), as well as update their contact information.  Your academic department uses a unique, random number as your student ID number.  Your student ID number along with your Andrew account information will be sent under a separate e-mail from the registrar's office.  Your Andrew account is the key to accessing the university's computing services such as the Carnegie Mellon web portal, computing clusters, and e-mail.  If you need assistance in setting up this account, please contact the Andrew Help Center at  Unfortunately, the Program Coordinator cannot help you with Andrew computer accounts.  For urgent problems, please contact the Computing Services Help Center directly at 412-268-HELP, Monday-Friday 9 AM to 5 PM and on weekends, please report systems outages and area-wide network problems to computer Operations at 412-268-6688.

Students may also apply for student cards online prior to arriving on campus using ID Card Services.  Cards can also be picked up at ID Card Services.  Your CMU ID card is used to identify you as a CMU student and also entitles you to free public transportation on Pittsburgh's bus system, PAT (Port Authority Transportation).

All incoming students are required to submit a health history and immunization information.  Visit Health Connect for instructions on how to complete these forms.  Carnegie Mellon also has a medical insurance mandate.  Students are by default charged for medical insurance each year, and must either enroll in the plan or complete a waiver form certifying  enrollment on an employer or government-based plan that meets certain coverage requirements.  For details on the mandate, enrollment and waiver forms, visit Student Insurance.  The online waiver program is accessible on the website now.  If you intend to stay on your existing insurance plan (your parents, for example) you will need to complete the waiver form and the default charge will be removed.

Complete information about health insurance plans and coverage is available on-line at University Health Services where you can find out about the various plans and costs and enroll online from this site.  Cost of the current plans may vary and the rates listed are subject to change.  All full-time students are required to carry health insurance and will be assessed a charge for the individual basic mandatory plan offered through the university student health insurance program.  The charge will appear on the invoice of the first semester of attendance in the academic cycle.  The student is required to take one of the following three actions:

  1. Enroll in the basic plan as charged.
  2. Upgrade the benefit plan by enrolling in the enhanced student health insurance options during the open enrollment period.
  3. Apply for a waiver from the mandatory plan.

Carnegie Mellon is pleased to extend the services of Tuition Management Systems (TMS) to help you afford the health insurance cost.  The TMS Health Insurance Monthly Payment Options allows you to spread your health insurance premium over nine monthly installments for a $25 enrollment fee.  The installments begin in September and end in May.  Please see the information on this new payment option at the University Health Services website.

CMU has designated two on campus buildings for graduate housing--the Shirley and Neville apartments offer single and double occupancy for current CMU students.  Incoming students can apply here using an Andrew ID. The Carnegie Mellon Housing Office also provides several resources to assist graduate students in finding suitable housing in nearby neighborhoods.  By seeking out housing early, you beat the undergraduate/graduate rush that tends to happen in the early part of August.  The best place to start is by accessing the online community of off campus housing listings.  If you have further questions on housing, or need  more information, contact

Newly admitted students will need their student ID (SID) number (as entered into the SIS), as well as their Andrew userID and password to access all secure sites at Carnegie Mellon University.  This includes the Student Information Online (SIO) where students can access their electronic bills (E-Bills), account activity, course schedule, and grades (if applicable), as well as update their contact information.

The SIO system is where students check their enrollment data, schedules, classes, review account balances and grades.  This is also the area where students can update address information.  It is important for students to have a current local address on file so that any information sent out from campus will reach you so please update this information as soon as you have it.  To view or update your address information, visit SIO and click on the "My Info tab".  You can then update your information as necessary and click the submit button to save any changes.  All address data is updated immediately within the system.

You may also order enrollment verifications on SIO.  Enrollment verification is your proof of enrollment at Carnegie Mellon.  This is often requested by insurance companies wanting to verify that you are enrolled or by scholarship committees wanting to know if you have maintained a certain QPA.  This SIO feature cannot be used until you are registered for courses and enrolled for classes.  In the meantime, if you need a letter stating that you are expected to enroll at Carnegie Mellon, please e-mail the details of your request to

Your Andrew e-mail account is your conduit for official and important Carnegie Mellon communications.  Please check it frequently over the summer and during your academic career.  Official Carnegie Mellon notifications are sent to valid Andrew account users using the e-mail address (example:  If you choose to use an alternate e-mail address (i.e. @yahoo; @gmail, etc.), then you should forward your e-mail to your preferred/alternate e-mail address to ensure that you receive all official university communications.

The Enrollment Services office will forward preliminary registration information to you during the summer, including an invoice showing the amount of your tuition for the fall semester.  Please fill out the forms as requested and return them directly to Enrollment Services indicating that tuition will be deducted from your monthly support payment from the program.  If all forms are filled out properly and returned on time, your registration will be completed by mail. If not, you will have an opportunity to complete "late enrollment" after you arrive.

The MSIT-PE Program has fellowships available for potential students.  In order to be eligible for a fellowship get your application in by the deadline.  Fellowships are awarded by committee and decisions on awards will be sent out along with admission letters.

If you have been awarded a fellowship from the Privacy Engineering program half of the amount will be loaded on your student account at the beginning of the semester prior to the tuition due date.  The remaining balance will be added to your account at the beginning of the second semester.  Full scholarship amounts will not be credited to your account at the beginning of the semester unless your award letter specifically states this.

If you are NOT a U.S. citizen you will receive the I-20 Form, which will allow you to obtain the F-1 student visa.  However, the I-20 cannot be issued until we receive a completed International Student Information Form from you.  If you are already in a U.S. college or university, you will need to request a transfer through your Foreign Student Advisor rather than receiving a new I-20 form.  For additional information regarding visas you may want to visit the Office of International Education (OIE) website.

International students will also receive information with the I-20 Form regarding the International Student Orientation program sponsored by the OIE.  This program is mandatory for all new incoming international students.  If you are unable to attend the scheduled orientation session, you will be required to attend an orientation session before the end of the first week of the semester in order for your enrollment to be complete, and to maintain your valid visa status.