Hands-On Business and Engineering Opportunities at Wilkes University
Established in 1933 in an urban pocket of Northeastern Pennsylvania, Wilkes University is now home to more than 2,300 students from nearly 20 US states and 12 countries. The intimate, private university boasts a variety of degrees ranging from undergraduate and graduate business and engineering programs to professional schools for nursing and pharmacy.
Conditional Admissions for IEP Students
International students often enter Wilkes University through the Intensive English Program (IEP). The IEP’s semester-long English language sessions combine group classes with individual computer lab work 4.5 days per week, and advanced students can enroll in a Wilkes University class for credit through the Bridge program. With a convenient conditional admissions policy, the goal of the IEP is to prepare foreign students for academic degrees at Wilkes and beyond.
The IEP strives to integrate foreign students into Wilkes University life, organizing ESL coffee hours, conversation partners, and regional excursions. IEP students may live on campus among American students in the university’s residence halls, many of which are converted historic mansions.
Small University with Hands-On Academics
The Wilkes community is cooperative and supportive, and classes across all departments are kept small, with a focus on personal attention. “We are a small Liberal Arts college with the personal attention of a small college, but the broad offerings of a university,” explained IEP Director Kimberly Niezgoda. Wilkes places importance on mentoring, with advisors from many departments available to work with students one-on-one. “It’s a university where everyone knows your name,” noted Dr. Niezgoda.
The 41 undergraduate majors include a new 4+1 BS/MS in bioengineering, and university students intern with numerous companies like NASA, Google, Toyota, and Entrepix to gain industry experience.
“Wilkes programs are very hands-on. In addition to learning the theory, they learn how to apply the theory,” stated Dr. Niezgoda. Wilkes also just opened the new USD $35 million Cohen Science building, providing students with state-of-the-art learning facilities.
Business students have opportunities to intern with companies such as Walmart, Target, and Kellogg’s. Enactus, the student entrepreneurial group, recently placed in the top five teams in the national Sam’s Club Step Up for Small Business Project Partnership competition.
Student Life at Wilkes
With more than 20 sports teams and numerous organizations, ranging from a robotics club to marching band, Wilkes students are incredibly active outside the classroom. The university is located just steps from the town’s charming main square, but those looking for a quick weekend getaway will be pleased to discover the plethora of affordable connections to other cities, such as $25 bus rides to New York City departing throughout the day. Wilkes is the perfect balance of local small-town charm, personalized attention, and stellar work placement opportunities – with big cities just around the corner.
Ven Pham: “I have studied in the program for two semesters. All I have to say is that I love it. All the teachers are very nice and helpful. They helped me with any problem such as helping me send a letter when I first came here and did not know English to helping me apply for a driver’s license. My English has improved and I am able to communicate very well with native speakers. Also, my classmates came from different countries like China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia so I had a chance to meet a lot of people and learn about their countries.”