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Summer Academic Orientation

Strategies for Success: Intensive Academic Orientation for Exchange Students

Mission Statement
Our Intensive Academic Orientation for exchange students provides a useful bridge from your life as a student in your country to your life as a student in the U.S. The transition to student life in the U.S. is eased by exploration and practice in several components of the program.

  • Interactive Academic English
    Small classes help you strengthen skills necessary for academic success in a U.S. university or college. The instruction, practice, and energetic interaction in discussion, writing, pronunciation, and reading classes give you an academic boost.
  • Cultural Learning Through Personal Experience
    During your one-weekend home stay, you will have a chance to chat informally with your host family in English and learn how an Iowan family lives, works, and relaxes.
  • Orientation to U.S. Campus Lifestyle Issues
    Got questions? You will discuss with classmates and Coe College students both the challenging and ordinary campus life issues such as dating, living in coeducational dormitories, study styles, and more.
  • Collective Reflection and Enduring Friendships
    Midnight reflections on your common experience will cement friendships with other orientation students. Such important conversations will continue to support and sustain you through the year via e-mail and at holiday reunions.

Comments from former students
  • "Although the assignments were tough, writing those essays helped me a lot!"
  • "A lot of advice and comments on journals and essays were helpful."
  • "This class helped me recall my reading skills."
  • "It's hard to read much, but I could be used to it."
  • "I'm glad I had the chance to talk with a member of the community."
  • "Interviewing was a good experience."
  • "Even though [pronunciation class] was scheduled late in the afternoon, I could not fall asleep because it was so much fun."
  • "I had never had a host family, so I was a little nervous at first. But they were really nice people, and I enjoyed the stay a lot."
  • "To have met a lot of people including non-Japanese students who can share my opinions and give me a piece of advice when I'm in need was helpful."



Facilities and Resources
  • Free use of sports facilities: indoor racquet center with tennis, racquetball and squash courts, outdoor tennis courts, running tracks, weight room, exercise machines, sand volleyball court
  • Beautiful library with computer labs, a video theater, and study space
  • Writing Center where Coe students serve as writing tutors
  • Experienced instructors & International student advisor
  • Dormitory life: You will share a double room in a modern residence hall
  • Speakers and interviewees from the college community



Daily Schedule
late July or early August Arrive in Cedar Rapids
Monday-Friday: 7:30-8:30 Breakfast in the cafeteria

    (Daily Schedule)

9:15-10:30 Academic Reading
  10:40-11:50 University Writing
  11:50-12:30 Lunch in the cafeteria
  1:00-1:50 Pronunciation (2 days/week)
  2:00-3:30 Communication, Oral Presentation, Note-taking
  5:00-5:45 Dinner in the cafeteria
  Evenings Optional sports, studying, cultural activities
End of Program Program banquet with host families
Party for students, staff, and friends
Departure for colleges/universities


How can I apply?
Print the application form and send it to:

Ms. Barbara Drexler or Ms. Joanna Shaver
Intensive E.S.L. Program
Coe College
1220 First Avenue N.E.
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52402 U.S.A.

Phone: 319-399-8541
Fax: 319-399-8748

Or, contact us by e-mail at: bdrexler@coe.edu or jshaver@coe.edu.


What are the fees?
The fee for the three-week orientation program is $1,600.00. This includes tuition, room, board, and fees.


Do I need an I-20 from Coe College?
No, you don't need an additional I-20 form from Coe College if the end of the orientation program is less than 30 days from the start of your college or university.

Yes, you need an additional I-20 form from Coe College if the end of the orientation is more than 30 days from the start of your college or university.


Where is Coe College?
Coe College, a liberal arts college in the friendly, safe midwest state of Iowa opened its doors in 1861. The first international student attended Coe College in 1914, and Coe College has been welcoming international students ever since. Coe's Intensive English as a Second Language Program began 29 years ago. In 1986 we added the Summer Intensive Academic Orientation Program. Exchange students from Waseda University and Nagoya Gakuin University as well as students from Spain, Korea, and Thailand have gotten a head start with our Intensive Academic Orientation program. Our current ESL and Orientation Program staff has many years of teaching experience in the U.S. and abroad. We look forward to meeting you and having you in our program!