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Most Memorable Experience

I travelled in four different countries, climbed Machu Picchu and Glacier Perito Moreno, took classes in a different language, made new friends and found my way around the chaotic city of Buenos Aires. However, some of the best days abroad involved getting on and off the right bus or providing an Argentine with accurate directions. The sense of accomplishment from those little things made the whole experience that much better.

Julie-Ann Spatz

Legal Studies, Criminal Justice Certificate
IAP Buenos Aires, Argentina

Incoming Exchange Students


On-campus housing is through the Division of University Housing. The University residence halls (also known as dormitories) are a short walk or short ride on the campus circular bus route (Route 80) to class. The University residence halls are single, double, or triple occupancy rooms without kitchens and with shared bathrooms. All University residence hall students have access to University residence hall dining rooms. Students can purchase food à la carte at a variety of University Housing dining locations. The Wiscard, your student ID, also serves as your primary way to pay for food in University Housing dining markets, coffee shops, and convenience stores with the Resident Food Account. Many halls also have a common kitchen for cooking occasional meals on your own. If you plan to study at UW-Madison for the Fall semester only, you can break your year-long contract, but will not receive your $300 deposit back. Many of our Fall students choose to do this, and it is no problem for the Division of University Housing.

We have found that exchange students have most enjoyed their experience in halls with specific features such as single rooms or large kitchens. You may want to consider the following residence halls in particular:

Once you are accepted to the UW-Madison exchange program, the Division of University Housing will send you instructions on how to apply for on-campus housing. If you plan to live in the University residence halls, please pay attention to your email account. You will receive an email from the Division of University Housing (from a few weeks after your acceptance to our exchange program. This email will contain instructions on how to apply for on-campus residence hall housing. We strongly recommend that you apply for on-campus housing as soon as you receive the email.

Any other housing situation is "off-campus". There are many private apartments, houses, and co-ops that are close to campus. Take care when arranging housing off-campus. Be sure to have a lease (rental agreement) and be sure to read your lease thoroughly. Verbal agreements on rentals are not normal in the United States. If you plan to study at UW-Madison for a semester but choose a year-long lease, you will generally be responsible for the remaining months’ rent unless another renter (subletter) can be found.

The UW-Madison student union (the Wisconsin Union) has a number of small cafes available on campus. Any student is welcome to purchase meals at these locations. The UW-Madison campus is in the center of the city of Madison, and there are a variety of restaurants available nearby, as well as grocery stores to purchase food for cooking.

If you plan to live in off-campus housing, it is up to you to find and arrange appropriate accommodations. Off-campus housing is owned and operated by private individuals or companies and therefore, our office in unable to make any commitment or advance arrangements for off-campus housing. Most off-campus housing opportunities require a yearlong lease. UW-Madison’s Campus Area Housing Listing Service has information and FAQs about renting in the Madison area, as well as rental listings for housing that is currently available.