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English Programs for Internationals

Beyond the Classroom

Beyond the Classroom

Conversation Partners
EPI students can practice their English speaking skills when they talk with their native English-speaking conversation partners, coming from the university as well as the surrounding community. The Conversation Partners Program is a free option for EPI students. Conversation Partners meet for at least one hour per week.

University Courses
Advanced - level EPI students observe university courses in various disciplines. They also participate in academic activities, along with American students, in such fields as Foreign Languages, Anthropology, and International Relations.

University 101
This is an undergraduate course addressing the specific needs of college freshmen adjusting to college life. EPI students have an opportunity to share their ideas with American college students when they visit University 101 classes.

School Visitations
EPI students can learn about American schools, meet American students and teachers, and share information when they visit various public schools in the Columbia area. Usually, EPI students speak to school groups about their home countries.

International Week
Students in EPI are given an opportunity to share their own cultures with American students, staff, and faculty of USC when they participate in International Week.

International Hour
When EPI students attend the International Hour, they can meet Americans from the community. The International Hour is held in the Fall and Spring semesters, every Friday from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m., and is sponsored by a different community group each week. The International Hour is organized by the Columbia Council for Internationals (CCFI), a community group serving internationals.

President's Reception
Every year in the Fall the President of the University of South Carolina gives a reception in honor of all international students at the University. At this event, students can meet the President and tour his house and grounds. CCFI coordinates this event.

EPI Trips
EPI students enjoy learning about various American cities and recreational spots when they go on EPI-sponsored short trips. EPI often takes students to Charleston, one of the most historic cities in the USA. EPI also takes students to visit various places in Columbia, such as the zoo, museums, the state capital, local schools, and recreational parks.

EPI provides weekly shopping trips to Wal-Mart and two shopping mall trips per term. EPI also helps students organize their own trips by providing materials and assistance for students who want to make short weekend trips while studying in EPI. EPI students enjoy visiting Myrtle Beach, a resort town located at South Carolina's Grand Strand along the Atlantic Ocean, and going on camping and rafting trips in the Great Smoky Mountains.

EPI Sports Activities
Students can participate in EPI and USC sports activities such as soccer, basketball, volleyball, and baseball. Students may also use the University's Blatt Physical Education Center and the Strom Thurmand Wellness Center. Some of the indoor facilities are handball, racquetball, basketball, and squash courts; a dance studio; a weight-lifting room; and an olympic-sized swimming pool. Outdoor facilities include football and soccer fields and tennis courts.

EPI Tutoring Center
EPI students can receive free one-on-one tutoring from a qualified EPI tutor with any of their English language skills (writing, grammar, speaking, listening, reading or vocabulary) by taking advantage of our "drop-in" tutoring program. Tutoring is available each weekday when a term is in session. For more information, see