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University Preparation

Summer Program

New Students

International students can find the start to their freshman year overwhelming, busy, and confusing.  UPREP is a unique 3 week program that helps incoming undergraduate international students transition and prepare for academic study at Drexel University.  During the program, students receive a comprehensive orientation to Drexel University, intensive academic preparation while learning about college life and meeting new friends.  Our goal is to give students the best start to their Drexel experience.

Qualified applicants accepted directly into the program must successfully complete the courses and activities as preparation to start their studies at Drexel University.

Important Dates

Deadlines & Events Dates
Drexel acceptance March-April
Deadline for receipt of new TOEFL scores by Drexel Admissions office April 30
Deadline to submit the Drexel enrollment form to Drexel University with $300 deposit May 1
Deadline for submitting separate UPREP Enrollment Form May 15
Check in to summer housing Aug. 22-23
University Preparation orientation, program, and classes Aug. 24-Sept. 11
Drexel University New Student Days for all incoming international students Sept. 13-18

Sample Schedule and Course Descriptions

Sample Schedule

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Academic written and oral language course Academic written and oral language course Academic written and oral language course Academic written and oral language course Academic written and oral language course
College life course College life course College life course College life course College life course

University Experience

Conversation Hour

University Experience: Getting to Know Drexel Conversation Hour University Experience: Getting to Know Drexel
Study Hall Evening Activity Study Hall Study Hall Free Time

Course Descriptions

Academic written and oral language course - Practice strategies and skills for communicating on an American campus through speaking and writing. See requirements listed under "How do you complete the University Preparation Program."

College life course - Topics include talking with your professor, participating in discussions, asking for information and getting help, negotiating with your roommates, etc.

University Experience: Getting to Know Drexel - Faculty and staff from the university will present information about free resources to help you at Drexel. Topics include: Using the classroom technology, living and learning in the residence halls, introduction to the library, academic honesty, time management, math and writing centers, academic advising, and the Co-op experience.

Conversation Hour - Meet with Drexel students and staff for conversations about topics that are important to you as an international student.

Study Hall - Meet in small groups to do homework and get help with projects.

Evening Activities - Relax and enjoy an evening movie, dinner with friends, or a night in Center City Philadelphia. Your choice!

How do you complete the University Preparation Program?

All students are expected to attend classes and fully participate in the program.

For students required to complete the University Preparation Program before beginning their studies at Drexel please read this carefully:

Your advisors will determine if you will enter onto one of two paths of study in the Fall. These recommendations will be based on your performance in their UPREP classes and final written and oral communication skills assessments.

Path One: Full-time undergraduate matriculation with special coursework in the Fall term.

Path Two: International Gateway program, which provides a foundation year of English language courses plus academic coursework in preparation of undergraduate study the following fall.

To be recommended for Path One, students must:

  • Fulfill attendance and participation requirements in UPREP classes and activities
  • Achieve 80% or higher in all UPREP classes
  • Achieve 80% or higher in final written and oral communications skills assessments
  • Receive a recommendation from the UPREP Coordinator

More information about requirements and how to obtain a recommendation for Path One will be provided upon arrival.

Skills Assessed for Oral Communications

  • Discuss a variety of academic topics with a native speaker
  • Use appropriate verb tenses and advanced grammatical structures in presentations and debates
  • Initiate, sustain and close conversations in different social settings
  • Answer main idea and most detail questions when listening to lectures and other speaking

Skills Assessed for Written Communications:

  • Write essays with clear introductions, developed body paragraphs, and conclusions
  • Incorporate advanced grammatical structures
  • Read and respond to university texts

Estimated Costs for the UPREP Program

Expense Estimated Cost
UPREP program fees
Drexel Insurance for UPREP and Freshman year (insurance information will be explained during orientation)

Dragon Plan: TBD

Preferred Plan: TBD     

Housing in Drexel Summer Residence Hall

To bring for food, books, and other summer expenses (estimated costs)

Students will be able to add money to your Drexel Student ID card (Dragon Dollars) to use for dining on and off campus.


How to Enroll and Submit your I-20 Application

To accept your admission to Drexel University and the UPREP Program, please follow these two easy steps:

  1. Submit the Drexel enrollment form to Drexel University with your $300 non-refundable deposit by May 1.
  2. Submit the UPREP enrollment form to the English Language Center with your $100 non-refundable deposit by May 15.

You will receive your I-20 from the English Language Center.

After you confirm with Drexel, complete the special UPREP I-20 application and send directly to

Preparing to Arrive

Check your emails every day for information from Drexel Enrollment Management, ISSS and your own department.

Before you arrive in Philadelphia, sign up for your Drexel email account, choose your fall housing, take your placement tests, and get your immunizations completed.

A reminder: Please expect delays when first arriving in the U.S. as Customs and Border Patrol officers will be checking each F-1 and J-1 student's SEVIS record to ensure that it is in 'Initial' or 'Active' status.


You must set up your Drexel University email account to pay tuition, take your math and science placement tests, see your course schedule, and look for other important information.

Go to Use your Drexel student ID, which is on your acceptance letter.


Take your online math and science tests that will help your advisor place you in the correct courses. Go to


Bring all your documents to show you have your immunizations. Download the Immunization Form and print. Your doctor should complete this form (PPD tuberculosis vaccine must be completed in the United States)


Fall orientation is for students who will study at Drexel. All colleges and schools will have someone to help you. Registration will open in May.

UPREP Summer Housing

You do not need a separate application for the UPREP summer housing. All UPREP students will be assigned rooms in a Drexel Residence Hall on campus when we receive the Intent to Enroll form. You will pay your UPREP housing fee when you arrive.

Send us an email about your arrival date and time so the residence hall staff can help you. You can move in any time on Saturday August 22 or Sunday August 23. The residence hall is open 24 hours a day.

You will receive sheets and blankets for the first 2 weeks. The ELC will help you find a store to buy other items for your room.

Towers Hall address: 101 N. 34th Street Philadelphia, PA 19104

  • Large social/study lounges are located on each floor, with 32" flat screen televisions.
  • The laundry room is centrally located on the second floor.
  • A fully furnished game room is available on the first floor.
  • Each bedroom includes a MicroFridge (a microwave and refrigerator combo).
  • Each residents will have a hard-wired connection to ResNet and there are DragonFly wireless activation points throughout the building.

Arriving in Philadelphia

Transportation from Philadelphia International Airport

The easiest way is to take a taxi.

  • When: 24 hours a day. You do not need a reservation.
  • Where: Outside of the baggage claim area.
  • How: Tell the driver the address you want to go to (or write it on a piece of paper).
  • Time: About 20 minutes from the airport to Drexel University.
  • Cost: About $35 including tip (cash or credit card).

Shuttle van service is cheaper, but a little harder.

  • When: 5:30 a.m. - 12:00 midnight. You do not need a reservation.
  • Where: Go to the Ground Transportation counter in the baggage claim area.
  • How:
    1. Use the phones on the counter. Dial #27 for Lady Liberty Transportation.
    2. Tell them the address you are going to. Ask the people behind the counter for help
    3. Tell the driver the address you want to go to (or write it on a piece of paper).
  • Time: About 30 minutes from the airport to Drexel University (the van may make other stops).
  • Cost: About $15 (cash only). Tell the driver to turn right on 33rd Street. The dormitories are located between Arch and Powelton Streets. You will be in Towers Hall.
  • campus map

Paying Tuition and Fees

All UPREP payments are due by 5:00 pm Tuesday, August 25.

  • You will receive directions about paying for all your fees when you arrive. (UPREP program fees, housing, and Drexel health insurance)
  • Payments can be made with credit cards,bank drafts, personal checks, money orders, or cash. Travelers checks are NOT accepted.
  • Credit Card Payments can be only be made online 
    • Master Card, Discover and American Express ONLY; we do NOT accept payment by VISA credit cards.
    • Be sure you have set up your Drexel University Computer Account and have your User ID and Password.
    • All credit card payments are subject to a non-refundable processing fee for each transaction, currently 2.75% (0.0275

Frequently Asked Questions

I retook the TOEFL/IELTS. How do I resubmit my new score?

  • Contact the test organization to submit the new score directly to Drexel Admissions
    Phone: 215.895.2202215.895.2202 | FAX: 215.895.5939 | E-mail:

Who do I contact about my I-20?

  • The ELC will issue your I-20 for UPREP. At the end of the program, you will receive a new I-20 from Drexel. If you have not received your I-20 by July 10 email

Where can I use my Dragon Dollars to buy food?

How do I contact the English Language Center?

  • Phone: 215.895.2022215.895.2022 | FAX: 215.895.6775 | E-mail: