You can request basic telephone service by contacting the telephone company, SBC/Ameritech at 1-800-244-4444 to complete an application over the phone. You will be required to fax documentation, your stamped passport, visa and school ID to 1-800-668-6613 (attn: CSC). Other information may be requested, and you will be advised accordingly. You can request assistance from International Student Affairs staff if necessary.
Establishing Phone Service
Basic phone service means you can make and receive calls and have access to the Internet. You will be asked whether or not you want your new phone number to be 'published' or 'unpublished'. There will be an additional monthly charge to have an 'unpublished' phone number. The cost to install a telephone line is approximately $50 and will appear on your first month's bill along with charges for any calls you've made. When you request a telephone line, you will be offered other services provided by the phone company, such as caller ID, voice mail and call waiting, just to name a few. Additional services cost more and charges add up quickly, so choose your services wisely.
Long Distance Calls
Your long distance calling options include choosing a long distance carrier using "10-10"/dialaround access codes, or using prepaid phone cards. When ordering telephone service, you will be asked to choose a long distance carrier. AT&T and MCI are expensive, but reliable carriers. There are many other carriers to choose from, so it's a good idea to ask your friends and classmates for references. If you choose a carrier and become unhappy with the service, it can (usually) be changed at any time. Until you sign up for a long distance carrier, you will be charged an additional $1 fee per month on your phone bill.
You can use "10-10"/dialaround access codes to make long distance calls if you do not have a long distance carrier. '"Dialaround" got its name because you basically dial around specific long distance providers to access a network of carriers. You are not signing up if you use an access/"dialaround" code, nor are you canceling a previously ordered long distance provider. Charges for "10-10" calls appear on your monthly phone bill along with all other charges for the line. If you are using someone else's line, always let them know to expect upcoming "10-10" charges on their bill. Check local radio, television, newspaper ads and www.10-10phonerates.com for the best deals.
Prepaid phone or calling cards are readily available and very helpful if you are on a budget. They offer convenience and reliability every day and in emergency situations. When you buy a prepaid phone card, you are paying in advance for a specific amount of calling time. When you use your card, time is automatically logged and deducted from the card until all the time is depleted. Typical other charges include maintenance fees and taxes. Phone cards vary greatly depending on where you are calling from/to and usually expire within three to six months of purchase. A good place to learn more about phone cards or to find the one that best suits your needs, go to www.phonecards-prepaid.com.
An alternative to ordinary phone lines is a cellular or wireless phone. You can take it everywhere and is more convenient than a "land line". There are many programs offered by cellular phone companies. Before purchasing a phone and/or signing a contract, you will have to consider which one is most suitable for you. Inquire about minutes per month, monthly service fees and any special offers for which you may qualify. Many companies provide cell phones for free but may require you to agree to a one-year contract. Once you sign a contract/agreement with a company, it would be difficult or impossible to change. While Moraine Valley cannot recommend one company over another, here is contact information for the closest location for just a few of the many area cell phone companies:
www.nextel.com (708) 974-0466
www.cingular.com (708) 974-1717
www.verizonwireless.com (708) 599-9200
www.voicestream.com (708) 460-6200
www.primeco.com (708) 599-2331
www.sprintpcs.com 1-(888) 232-8981
If you do not have a computer, as a Moraine Valley student, you have three locations where you can access the Internet: Center for Contemporary Technology (CCT) in T900, the Learning Resource Center (LRC), L251, or in the International Student Affairs Office in the Student Services Center, Room S217. When using the computer labs, please check the schedule board to see which computers are available for student use. You may need to show your student ID to gain access to computers. You can sign up for a HOTMAIL (www.hotmail.com) address, which is a free service, if you do not already have an e-mail address. If you need to print something, there is a .10 charge per page and you will need to purchase a cash card in the Library/Learning Resources Center. This will cost $1 to buy the card and funds can be added to it. Moraine Valley cash cards can also be used on campus copiers. For more information about obtaining a cash card, inquire at the Library/Learning Resources Center.