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Resources for International Students

Going away to college can be intimidating, to say the least. Going away to college in a different country can be downright scary, but it doesn’t have to be. At Marshalltown Community College there are a lot of great resources available to our international students to help them every step of the way in their education.

Why attend MCC?

MCC has one of the highest percentages of international students of any community college in Iowa! Why is this a benefit? We know how to help our students adjust to being in a different country and have the resources available to help you become a part of the community and be immersed in the American culture while learning about other cultures.

Meet Vickie!

Vickie Unferth is the MCC Coordinator of International Students and Programs. Her primary job is to help students every step of the way to an enjoyable experience at Marshalltown Community College. Vickie will answer all of the questions you have when you are considering attending MCC, help you in the steps in attending MCC and will help you once you are on campus. She is a great resource for anything you need.

MCC Website

The MCC website has several web pages that will guide you in the process of applying to MCC and what you need once you are here as well. The International Student web page also has a list of the MCC International Ambassadors. These are current students that have been through the same things you are currently going through and are happy to answer questions you may have about their experiences and what you can expect. There is also a step by step process of what you need to do to attend MCC.

Along with the International Student web page, there are also four other pages for helpful tips when traveling to attend MCC.

  • Pre-Arrival Information. There are some helpful hints on this page about travel, MCC Orientation when you arrive on campus, housing & meals, healthcare and insurance and bill payments.
  • Academic Success. Since you have made the choice to attend MCC we are excited to help you in your academic goals and want to help you succeed. On this page, you will find some helpful hints about the classes you should consider taking, classroom rules to follow to help you succeed and a link to the Student Success Center. You can receive tutoring if you need some extra help. This service is located on campus and available to all students.
  • International Student Employment. If you are interested in having a job while you are taking classes, international students can work on-campus up to 20 hours per week. There are also helpful hints if you want to work off-campus as well.
  • Social Success. Because MCC has a high percentage of international students there are many ways to get involved on campus and help you connect with other students. There are some activities that are specific to international students but there are also a lot of great clubs and organizations in addition to these that students are invited to attend. There are also a lot of on-campus events and activities that all students can attend at no cost. MCC athletics is also another way to get involved. Tiger athletics includes men’s and women’s basketball, men’s soccer, baseball, softball, women’s volleyball and cheer/dance.


Once you have arrived on campus, let the fun begin! Vickie, along with many other members of the MCC faculty and staff, will help you get settled and have a ton of helpful hints to help you in your time at MCC. An International Student Orientation is held right from the beginning. This includes getting to know some of the current international students, meeting with some of the staff that you will interact with on a regular basis, and getting comfortable on campus with several tours.

In addition to getting more comfortable with campus, the orientation also includes getting used to Marshalltown. This will include trips to several of the stores you may need in your time at MCC, learning about transportation around town and finding some of the fun and delicious restaurants that Marshalltown has to offer. The International orientation includes a week of activities to help make you more comfortable at your new home.

International College Experience

All first-year students planning to transfer after MCC are required to take a College Experience class. There is a specific College Experience class that is for international students taught by Vickie. This course introduces international students to U.S. college expectations, environment, and resources so that students will feel more competent in the learning process.  Emphasis is placed on accessing resources to enhance International students’ experiences and success while studying in the United States. As part of the course, Vickie also provides two small books that are extremely helpful for your time at MCC. U.S. Classroom Culture, A Guide to Navigating Higher Education in the United States and Introduction to American Life, A Guide to Common Customs and Values in America.

As you ready for your time at MCC, know that we are as excited to meet and learn about you and your culture as you are to learn about us. We embrace the differences that everyone brings to campus. If you need any help in your time at MCC, there are lots of faculty, staff and employees that are happy to help you, as well as other students that have been through the same experience that you are beginning.

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