Moving to CERN for a longer time period

0. Introduction

I will be moving to CERN in August 2009 for at least a year. While going through all the necessary organizatorial stuff, I will document it here. Feel free to add whatever seems useful to you. If you are interested in information for a shorter stay (over the summer, p.ex.) or if this will be your first time at CERN, you should check out GoingToCern .
Useful other links will be listed here: As I am a grad student, many of the things here will be student-specific, but maybe you can also find more general information here.

1. Insurance

The grad student insurance at MSU is Aetna, and they do cover abroad on an "out of network basis". This means for you: - you can go to a doctor of your choice, but you have to pay for it yourself first - then you apply for reimbursement (there are forms online) - you have to pay $100 per year yourself - they will cover 80% of the expenses - you will never have to pay more than $2300 per year, they will pay the rest

If you have a prescription for certain medication from the US and you want to continue it, you can get a "vacation override", for 12 months. The procedure is the following:
  1. Make sure that the insurance has your grad appointment for the following year in their system. Usually these appointments get through very late, shortly before the new insurance year starts in August. But if your advisor tells Debbie that you DO have an appointment for the next year, she can put it through and after two weeks at most, the insurance should know about it.
  2. Next step is calling Aetna pharmacy management, telling them you should be in the system and asking for the override. They will tell you, that you can pick the medication up no earlier than 4 days before your departure date (whatever you told them)
  3. Now you have to make sure your prescription is valid, and eventually get a doctor's appointment to get a new prescription that is valid for a year.
  4. If everything works you can pick your medication up 4 days before your official departure date at Olin's pharmacy.

2. Possible funding

For grad students, there is a new NSF program: "NSF US LHC Graduate Student Support Awards". The current funding is $1000 per month for a year and $3000 for possible travel.

3. MSU salary

MSU will pay you a bit more, as you are living abroad. However they will still pay on an US bank account. So either you transfer money in bulks (paying a fee) or you pay a fee every time you use your debit card.

4. Living


See also GoingToCern. Visa requirements vary with nationality, and change from time to time, so check the requirement for your country!

-- SarahHeim - 17 Apr 2009
Topic revision: r7 - 12 Aug 2010, SarahHeim
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