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The staff of International Programs is available to answer any questions regarding studying at Whatcom Community College as an international student. Please see the information below regarding frequently asked questions. If you are unable to find an answer to your question, please contact us at: international@whatcom.ctc.edu

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What can I study?

English Language Institute classes, University Transfer, Professional and Technical Programs -- For specific program information, please click here.

2. How long will it take to graduate?

Students who begin their studies in the WCC English Language Institute take approximately 3 years to complete an Associate in Arts and Sciences degree.

3. Do I have to study English?

Students take an English language placement test at orientation which will determine where they begin their studies. Students can begin their studies in the WCC English Language Institute classes, in a combination of WCC English Language Institute courses and college-level courses, and college-level courses.

4. Do I need to take the TOEFL?

No TOEFL or other standardized test score is required for admission to WCC English Language Institute-although a 61 internet-based TOEFL score (or equivalent) allows students to enroll in at least one college-level course. Once a student has completed the highest level of any intensive course sequence, he or she may enroll in a college-level course without additional testing.

5. Can I transfer from another school?

Students currently in the U.S. and studying on an F-1 visa can transfer from another school once they have applied and been accepted to Whatcom Community College. After they are accepted to Whatcom, they will need to request that their SEVIS record be transferred from their current school to Whatcom. Once the SEVIS record is transferred, Whatcom will issue a new I-20.

6. When should I arrive?

Students entering the U.S. on an F-1 visa can enter the U.S. no more than 30 days before the start of the quarter. Students who arrive at SeaTac Airport on a suggested arrival date will be met at SeaTac by one of our staff members.

7. When can I start living with my homestay hosts?

Students can begin living with their homestay hosts about a week before the quarter begins. We recommend students begin living at their homestay on a suggested arrival date.

8. Where can I live?

Although most students choose to stay in a homestay when they first arrive at WCC, there are many apartments located within walking distance from the college. WCC students are able to live in the dormitories at Western Washington University on a "space available" basis. Generally, space is available during the winter, spring, and summer quarters.