Counseling

International Educational Center provides counseling that is dedicated to reducing the effect of social and institutional barriers that impede students' academic success. We believe this to be an important service, as many of our students come to us to study abroad. We understand that it can be a daunting task to acclimate to foreign surroundings while staying focused on learning.

For persons whose native language is not English, International Educational Center offers classes in ESL. Students with a background in a language other than English may obtain assistance by contacting the International Student Advisor. The International Student Advisor can assist students with information regarding ESL assessment, academic and career planning, and program services. Moreover, the International Student Advisor helps students evaluate their abilities, interests and personality traits in order to achieve academic success and develop realistic career goals. Also, they help students deal with social, behavioral and personal problems, and collaborate with teachers to devise and implement strategies so that students can succeed in learning English, and get into college and begin fulfilling careers of their own. International Student Advisors must be able to inspire trust and confidence, and need a strong desire to help others succeed.

Advising

International Educational Center's staff assists students in defining and reaching their academic and career goals. All students are encouraged to take advantage of our advising services.

Academic Advisors (Director of Education and Head Teacher) in the IEC Office provide a range of advising and support resources for our students. These academic resources are designed to enrich each student's educational experience as they transition to advanced courses. Academic Advisors work closely with students and teachers to provide individual academic advising and explain and interpret the policy.

Housing

IEC does not provide dormitories for students, but, as we are in a large and vibrant city, students have a wide range of housing options. On request, we are happy to assist with housing arrangements.

Health Insurance

Our students are recommended to purchase a comprehensive international student health insurance policy. Our staff assists students in navigating the intricacies of obtaining and understanding health coverage in the United States. Obtaining good health insurance while a student is studying overseas is a necessity to protect from minor and catastrophic medical expenses that can wipe out not only student's savings, but dreams of an education abroad.

There are two different types of health insurance a student is informed about by our office staff. A student can consider buying: international travel insurance and student insurance in the country where a student will be going. An international travel insurance policy is usually purchased in a student's home country before going abroad. It generally covers a wide variety of medical services, and a student is often given a list of doctors in the area who may speak their native language.

On the other hand, getting student health insurance in the country where a student will study might allow a student to only pay a certain percentage of the medical cost at the time of service (commonly called a co-pay), and thus, a student doesn't have to have sufficient cash to pay the entire bill at once.

At IEC students are recommended to purchase ISO health insurance. ISO – International Student Organization - is a pioneer health insurance administrator, always at the service of international students who are currently studying in the USA.

Social and Recreational Activities

ESL students retain more information when engaged with meaningful social activities. They need focused yet enjoyable classroom activities to help them become more confident in their English abilities. There are some celebrations which take place every year in our center: Halloween, Thanksgiving potluck dinner, Christmas and Valentine's Day.

We also plan other occasional recreational activities. We understand that getting together with friends on a field trip can be a fun activity, especially when students like hanging out with their peers and new American friends. Therefore, during the summer we may have field trips to the Botanic Gardens, Ravinia concert park, numerous Chicago Museums, etc.

Picnics are also a great opportunity to socialize and spend a wonderful day outside of the center with friends, family and the teachers, and participate in many interesting outdoor activities.

Complaints against IEC may be registered with the Board of Higher Education, 1 N. Old State Capitol Plaza, Suite 333, Springfield, Illinois 62701. Phone 217-782-2551