ESL Program

gaborSNC offers an individualized ESL program with an average class size of fewer than 15 students. Compassionate faculty work one-on-one with students to increase their written and conversational and academic English and build their English vocabulary. Students can enroll in the ESL program for only one semester or as long as four years, depending upon thier level and the rate at which they progress. Upon graduation of the Advanced ESL program, students may enroll at SNC as traditional student without having to reapply. International students make up over 10% of the student population and hail from 25 different countries.

High Beginner/Intermediate English

SNC requires all ESL students to have a basic functional level of English. For example, students should be able to ask for and understand directions, order from a restaurant menu, and comprehend basic texts. The first ESL level is for those at the high beginner or intermediate levels of English. A student’s ESL level is determined upon arrival at SNC.

Advanced English

Students in the Advanced ESL program have the opportunity to take a traditional course at SNC. Immersion in the curriculum with American and other international students helps the student to become more comfortable speaking and writing English and prepare to be a traditional student. SNC offers a wide variety of course options and focuses on interactive learning in the classroom and in the surrounding Lake Tahoe area.

Student Life

ESL students typically live in the SNC residence halls and are immersed in the English language through student activities, clubs, and weekend events. SNC offers activities for students almost every day of the week, and ESL students are often seen biking through San Francisco, hiking in Yosemite National Park, skiing at a local ski resort, or on one of the many other activities offered at SNC.

Lake Tahoe

Incline Village is one of the safest towns in the United States and Lake Tahoe is world-famous for its clear, clean lake. SNC resides in a quiet mountain village but is accessible to large cities such as Reno, Sacramento, and San Francisco – all less than a three-hour drive from campus.

Requirements for ESL applicants:

  • Completed application
  • English language exam results from TOEFL or IELTS
  • Completed SNC International Student Form
  • Bank statement showing proof of one year of tuition
  • A transcript evaluation showing proof of U.S. high school diploma equivalency and Grade Point Average from one of the following companies:
  • Optional: Personal statement in English
  • Optional: Letter of recommendation in English

For more information, please contact the Admissions Office at or 866.412.4636