Guidelines for Appointees

International Scholars

Visiting Researchers who are not United States citizens must obtain a visa to enter the U.S. and must prove that they have adequate funds to support themselves and any dependents who will be traveling with them for the duration of their visit. If you are admitted, a CMES staff member will be in touch with you to begin the visa application process if you indicated that you will need visa sponsorship in your application. 

To allow sufficient time to process visa paperwork, it is recommended that individuals who are not U.S. citizens allow at least three months prior to the date they expect to enter the U.S. to begin the process. CMES works in conjunction with the Harvard International Office for processing visas. You may visit their website for further details about types of visas and other helpful information.


CMES is not able to provide individual guidance or assistance to researchers who are seeking housing. The Harvard Housing Office posts listings of locally available apartments and rooms; their services are available to all University ID holders. 

Other housing resources include:

Health Insurance

Visiting Researchers are required by Harvard University to purchase individual health insurance for the term of the appointment, unless already covered elsewhere. Arrangements for health insurance coverage may be made upon the Visiting Researcher's arrival at Harvard. Further information will be mailed with your visa paperwork if you are applying for a Harvard sponsored visa.

Office/Desk Space

The Center for Middle Eastern Studies does not offer office space for visiting researchers. Visiting Researchers may apply for a carrel in Widener Library after they are issued a University ID card.


Visiting Researchers must provide their own computers. There are computer labs on campus.