The ELP has resumed in-person classes in our Intensive Program. Learn more here.

Badr A.

Saudi Arabia

Program: SABIC Foundation Year

A couple of weeks prior to my travel to Philadelphia, I never stopped googling "Upenn ELP", "University of Pennsylvania campus" and so on. Once I set foot in the campus, it became real for me,  no longer just google images. I pinched myself to ensure that it was not a dream. I was captured by the picturesque surroundings, and I fell in love with the simple yet elegant architecture that the campus had to offer. For me, nothing quite beats walking down Locust Walk.

The instructors in the ELP were completely supportive from day one, and honestly some of them were my role models to say the least. Many teachers were memorable, specifically Eve Litt. During my first session, I made countless mistakes in her class, but she was a true source of encouragement. She provided me with feedback that sometimes was longer than my essay or assignment. I learned that there is absolutely no shame in making mistakes, but they should never be repeated.

As a result of the diverse student body that the ELP encompasses, I was able to forge friendships with people from all around the world: South Korea, Colombia, China, Turkey, Japan, and may more. That has helped me to view things from a wider perspective and understand what lies underneath each culture. I can confidently say now that I am not the same person as I first entered 4 sessions ago, in terms of both English proficiency and awareness toward various cultural backgrounds and myself. This delightful journey might be regrettable only if you don't take part in it.

"The instructors in the ELP were completely supportive from day one, and honestly some of them were my role models to say the least."