Student Experiences

Learning at the ELC was an unforgettable experience. Every teacher has a warm heart and is very patient. Whenever I have questions, they are always there to help me and encourage me. I think that every part of the ELC’s course set is important. For example, the grammar class can help us to solve many problems very clearly. The speaking class can help us have the ability to talk with others. The integrated class can give us chance to join useful campus activities and social activities. The writing class can help us learn to write proper university level essays. Finally, the reading class can teach us the local culture of the United States, etc. Please join our big family! It is a really good experience for everyone! 

The ELC helped me understand American culture. I gained a lot of knowledge about daily life and the American mindset that I never knew from previous class. This helped me to adjust myself to the culture quickly. Finally, I feel like ELC is a big family, and we’re still are connected to each other even after the program. This is the very good place to study and to be a part of American education.

There are many reason why I love studying at Winona State University’s ELC. First, it is located in a beautiful town of Winona, right next to Mississippi River. Winona is a college town with three colleges, but only 30,000 people. It is a quiet place for study, has fewer distractions than most college towns, and is a safe place to live. Secondly, the ELC provides the transition time necessary for students when they first arrive to the United States. The ELC also provides lots of activities that helps students get used to the university life before they really start the college classes. Third, I find that grades are not the only way for instructors to evaluate the students. The ELC is looking for how much each student improves during the academic semester. On top of that, the ELC instructors are not only your teachers, but they are your friends and love and care very much about you. You can ask them any question you may have. It does not have to be an academic question either; it can be a question based more about life here in America or other personal questions. Lastly, the ELC program provides a creative way to be immersed in an English environment. It allows students improve their oral language and the listening skills all day, every day. The ELC is not an independent and secluded department at WSU. Students can have friends in both the ELC and with regular university students due to the opportunities to join university’s clubs and activities. 

One of the reasons why I like ELC program is because of the professors and lecturers. They are surprisingly so kind and friendly, and I find it hard to feel fear about studying abroad. Also, ELC program is nice. It's similar to regular class, and having homework is expected; however, the schoolwork is a good way to learn and prepare for regular university classes. Finally ELC has at least one fantastic big event every month. We often go out together for field trips such as going snowboarding, going to the arcade, finding the best cheese, etc. It is great opportunity to improve your communication skills and make a bunch of new friends! I cannot find any reason to not study here at Winona State University! If you still didn't decide to what you want to do, why not come to join us and study here? 

I learned English for only 6 months before studying in the USA, so I decided to get in ELC program to improve my English skills. I highly recommend the ELC program because you can learn what's the difference between your home country's ESL classes and American classes. I wouldn't have gotten through my freshmen year well if I didn't take the ELC program. Also, the beauty of ELC program is that you have the opportunity to build stronger English skills in both speaking and writing. For example, the writing class here taught me understand essay essence and how to write an essay in American way. So, I would say I survived my freshmen year because the ELC program helped me understand the expectations in American classes. Again, if you have no experience about studying in America and you think you are not ready to go to university courses right away, I highly recommend ELC program. 

I came to Winona, Minnesota in August 2014 to start my college career. Unfortunately, I could not start right away because my English skills were not the best yet, I have to say. I did not feel comfortable speaking in English to other people, I felt like I was doing it wrong. I decided to take a semester in the ELC, a full semester just taking English classes. The ELC helped me fully develop my English skills, and it prepared me for the academic challenges of college. I felt like I could do so much more, and I found more ways to express myself and excel in any assignments. I thank the ELC and each professor that I took classes with while I was there everyday because without them, I surely would have struggled my way into college.

The biggest thing I found helpful with the ELC program was that the classwork wasn’t too overwhelming. It’s can be very scary to go to another country and study, but the program was a very good way to transition. I mostly enjoyed that we would sometimes have time during class to finish our homework in small study groups. One thing I hope the ELC program doesn’t change is having conversation partners to practice our English speaking skills. I personally like to talk with people, so the conversation partners were always my favorite way to practice. 

My name is Janice Anoka and I’m an International Student from Nigeria and a sophomore at Winona State University. The English Language Center was a great place to begin my college journey. I must say I had a wonderful time at the ELC. I was blessed with the best instructors who wanted nothing but to bring out the best in their students. Becoming a freshman in college is one of the biggest transitions a young adult will make, but the ELC got me ready for college. Even in my first semester at Winona State, I never felt like a freshman because of the experience I already had in the ELC. I had gained insight on the differences between college and high school and I learned a lot about college while at the ELC. The program is very effective and the teachers are very understanding. The ELC classes helped me improve my writing and grammar, and taught me to learn from my mistakes.