International Applicants FAQs
Click on the questions for more information.
(Accepted for applicants entering grades 7-10)
No, all international students applying to MPA should anticipate paying full tuition and fees. Please refer to the Admission page of our website for annual tuition rates.
International students wanting to earn a MN state high school diploma from Mounds Park Academy will need to attend MPA for a minimum of three school years. This amount of time is required for international students to complete the required coursework for graduation and to attain English fluency in preparation for college. Graduating from MPA and earning an MPA diploma can be extremely helpful in applying for and being accepted to an American college or university. MPA’s rigorous academic program is well-respected within higher education and the education international students receive prepares them for success in college. All international students will receive college counseling for the duration of their enrollment.
- It is recommended that new international students arrive in Minnesota by August 15, approximately 10 days prior to the start of the school year. During this time, international students will be acclimating to their host homes, adjusting to the time change, attending orientation, taking placement tests for math and English, creating class schedules, and preparing for classes.
- It is recommended that returning international students arrive in Minnesota by August 20, approximately five days prior to the start of the school year. Returning international students still need a few days to adjust to the time zone, move back into their host homes, and prepare for school.
- International students are expected to follow the MPA Calendar and absence policy.
- Two years of a world language are required for diploma-seeking international students.
- One year of the world language requirement is fulfilled when taking the ESL class during the first year a student is at MPA.
- There is no world language requirement for non-diploma-seeking international students.
Yes. All international students will be registered for an ESL class their first year at MPA. We call this course Advanced Language and Culture. This class will fulfill one credit of foreign language and may be extended to two years, as needed, to support students in their MPA coursework and English language acquisition.
Mounds Park Academy is sensitive to devout students of all faiths. International students of any religion may observe religious holidays without penalty.
International students are eligible to compete in MPA sports only at the B-squad or JV level for each of their years at Mounds Park Academy. See page 21 of the MSHSL Bylaws for more eligibility information.
All international students have the opportunity to stay with a host family in and around the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, most of whom will be directly connected to the MPA community. Host families will be selected, vetted, and matched with students through MPA. Please contact Cory Becker-Kim, MPA International Program Coordinator, for more information.
Yes, students will be provided a school issued MacBook Air, school licensed software and charger in August. School issued MacBook Airs are managed by MPA’s IT department and students are required to sign an MPA technology agreement upon being issued their laptop. This laptop is the student's to keep upon graduation from MPA.
Yes, students can stay over the summer and should notify the international student program coordinator of summer plans.
- International students cannot work under F-1 Visa status. For more information, contact Cory Becker-Kim for assistance and approval.
- International students and host families will work together to get and set-up a cell phone. The cost of the phone and service will be paid entirely by the international student. The international student should have an international bank card for use while in the United States. If they do not, then the host family will assist the student in setting up a local checking account that natural parents can deposit money into for their international student.
Some international students use Visa or MasterCard debit/credit cards for purchases in addition to cash. Passports and other valuables can be kept with the International Student Coordinator if necessary. We strongly discourage international students from keeping large amounts of cash in their possession.
Minnesota has four distinct seasons: a warm summer with daily highs from 80-90° F, a winter with daily highs that average 10-20° F and a temperate spring and fall with highs averaging 40-60° F. International students will need clothing for all seasons and it is critical that they come prepared with a warm winter jacket, boots, gloves and hats. Minnesota Weather Information >
Yes, travel is encouraged during school breaks. Prior to travel, international students must submit the Permission to Travel Form to Cory Becker-Kim, MPA International Student Program Coordinator. All travel, with or without host families, must be approved prior to departure. International student travel cannot interfere with school attendance.
Packing may seem like a simple task but when you are planning to stay far away from home this task can seem scary and overwhelming. A school supply list will be sent out by the division office during the summer, but past lists can be found here: Middle School school supplies and Upper School school supplies. In addition, here are the essential items that international students may need when traveling to Minnesota: full packing list.