two international students in the makerspaceMPA’s international program welcomes students in grades 7-12 from a number of countries and backgrounds. Here are 10 things to love about the international program at MPA:

1. International Student Program Coordinator Mr. Becker-Kim: MPA has a dedicated International Student Program Coordinator, Cory Becker-Kim who serves as an advisor, teacher, and confidant to all international students on a daily basis, and regularly monitors their academic achievement. Given MPA’s emphasis on public speaking, college preparatory writing, and higher Lexile level reading, students work through the challenging coursework in one-on-one or in small groups with Mr. Becker-Kim throughout the entire duration of their MPA experience.

2. Advanced language and culture (AL&C) Course: Taught by Mr. Becker-Kim, Advanced language and culture (AL&C) course, with a 6:1 student to teacher ratio for all international students, is built into the curriculum as a World Language credit towards graduation. First-year international students are enrolled in AL&C to help with the cultural transition to an American high school, to discuss important social and historical events of the United States and learn the nuances of strong academic English and vocabulary to achieve fluency. Click here for the Advanced language and culture (AL&C) course description.

3. College Application Support: For juniors and seniors, MPA dedicates significant time and resources to helping international students with college applications, particularly with primary college application essays and supplemental writing essays.

4. Social and Emotional Support: All international students have the International Student Program Coordinator available to help them navigate homesickness, friendships, social situations and events, stress, and culture shock. When needed, the International Student Program Coordinator works closely with the School Counselor and/or Director of Guidance to be sure the student is as happy and healthy as possible during their time at MPA. Support includes connecting international students to domestic students, faculty and administration, and co-curricular activities.

5. New International Student Orientation: This involves one-on-one meetings with the Director of Guidance to create class schedule, acclimation to classroom and school culture, laptop orientation, plagiarism discussion, school supply shopping, sight-seeing in the Twin Cities, student networking opportunities, team building activities, and more.

6. Transition Assistance: For both students coming into our community for the first time, and to assist returning students in forming connections within the school and the Twin Cities, MPA provides transition assistance in order to make an international students transition, or transition back as smooth as possible.

7. Daily Hot Lunch: Served with culturally and religiously sensitive options, daily hot lunch is delicious and unlimited!

8. Quarterly Events: Throughout the school year and the summer, MPA’s international program hosts joyful events, on and off campus, to help support new and returning students.

9. Host Family Selection, Acclimation and Support: International host families are carefully recruited, selected and vetted to ensure the highest quality experience for our students. The International Student Program Coordinator works closely with students and their host families to ensure that the home is a safe, welcoming, happy environment for all. Quarterly home visits, one-on-one check-ins with students and host families, communication with natural parents, and student/host family events are all ways that the Program Coordinator works with host families and students to build routine, communication, and a supportive experience.

10. Translation Services: MPA provides translation services for international student and/or parents. This includes both in person conversations and documentation translation for Visa and immigration support.

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