International Student

Join an international learning community receiving a first-class education and experiencing life beyond the classroom.

The International Student Program (ISP) at Ben Lippen School is open to middle school and high school-aged students from the United States and around the world. International education has been a part of Ben Lippen’s DNA since its founding in 1940. Our ISP hosts 40 to 50 students each year from around the world. Countries represented include China, Spain, Vietnam, Germany, Nigeria, South Korea, Japan, Mexico, Venezuela, and the United States.  Ben Lippen School strives to provide three crucial elements for our international students:

  1. A safe, secure living environment
  2. A strong academic curriculum with highly-qualified faculty
  3. A happy and healthy life outside of the classroom

Ben Lippen School international students will not only receive a world-class education, they will also be prepared to enter an American university as a young man or young woman of integrity, respect, and responsibility.

Where will I live?

Our ISP provides students with two living options: (1) boarding in one of our on-campus houses as well as (2) homestays with local, fully-vetted American families.

View Our Housing Options

On-campus international students reside in one of our dedicated boarding houses in a peaceful wooded area surrounding a small lake. Each boarding house is staffed by full-time, experienced houseparents who balance love, encouragement, and discipline to ensure every student’s success in the classroom and in life.  Meet our houseparents here!

Our boarding houses offer an alternative to typical dorm life in traditional boarding schools by creating a family atmosphere within contemporary-style houses. A structured environment during the week provides for academic excellence and study. Weekends allow for more free time, social events, local shopping, and sports activities in one of our gyms or on one of our sports fields. On Sunday mornings, all students attend a local church meeting with their houseparents.  Transportation is provided for all school events, airport pick-ups and drop-offs, TOEFL tests, SAT exams, doctor appointments, shopping, etc.

Meet Our Houseparents

Our homestay program matches one of our international students with a local Ben Lippen family. Ben Lippen provides families who love and care for each international student as one of their own family members and help them prepare for the next stage in life.  Homestay students live with their host families seven days a week for the entire school year (August to May).

More About Our Homestay Program

What will I study?

International students attend classes alongside their American classmates, providing an enriching cross-cultural experience while greatly enhancing the English skills of our international students. Students participate in honors-level courses and many receive college credit through Advanced Placement (AP) and Dual Enrollment courses. Ben Lippen’s challenging college-prep curriculum prepares students for the academic rigors of higher education with 100% of BLS graduates accepted to American universities.

Ben Lippen offers 14 AP courses and more than 20 dual-enrollment courses.  You can choose from our standard College Preparatory diploma or if you want a more challenging experience, you can choose our Honors diploma or newest option, the Innovation Scholars diploma.

We have a new state-of-the-art robotics lab with a professional-grade 3D printer as well as engineering, chemistry, and biology labs.  If music or art is your interest, we offer a wide range of fine arts classes including guitar, sculpting, painting, choir, band, and drama.

For students who could benefit from ESL classes, we have two specialized, highly-qualified teachers to provide the English support that our international students need.  Mrs. Welsh and Mrs. Lewis have many years’ experience teaching English in the United States to international students.  Mrs. Welsh has her Master’s degree in TESOL and she lived in Argentina and Spain; Mrs. Lewis has her Master’s degree in intercultural studies with a certificate in TEFL.  She lived in China and taught English to university students for five years.

Finally, Ben Lippen School has a 1:1 Chromebook program for all students in Grades 6-12.

Can Ben Lippen help me achieve my goal of admission to a great American university?

Yes! We can!

The class of 2020 received over six million dollars in renewable scholarships to some of the finest colleges and universities. Recent graduates have been accepted to Harvard, Dartmouth, Georgetown, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Purdue, University of Southern California, Duke, UCLA, Boston College, University of Washington, Syracuse, Washington University in St. Louis, Michigan, UC Irvine, and Penn State.

Several of our Ben Lippen School international graduates have been accepted for graduate or post-graduate programs at schools such as Harvard, Columbia, Penn, and Duke.

If you are looking for a specialized university program, we can help you get there too!  Our international graduates have enrolled in highly-selective specialized programs such as the aviation program at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida, pharmacy at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in Boston, and hotel management at one of the premier hospitality schools in Switzerland.

Starting as early as 9th grade, every student receives personalized assistance and guidance with college applications, financial aid, scholarships, and vocational choices, equipping you for college and beyond.

What about my free time?

Your confidence, personal interests, and talents are developed through a wide array of co-curricular opportunities in academics, arts, athletics, leadership, and service.

International students are strongly encouraged to join after-school clubs such as the math team, robotics team, Model United Nations, Science Olympiad, or the National Honor Society.

Participating in an athletic team is another great way to build friendships with American students as well as learn how to be part of a successful team.  Swimming, cross-country, soccer, track and field, tennis, and golf are just a few of the sports offered at Ben Lippen.  We also offer some unique sport opportunities such as our sailing club where you will learn how to sail a boat on the waters of Lake Murray, or our sporting clays team where you will learn how to shoot a gun safely as you shoot clay “pigeons.”

You will have service opportunities too, such as teaching conversational Chinese to local American primary school students or helping to pack Christmas packages for children in developing nations.

We don’t want you to be bored on the weekends so we have open gym nights on Friday and Saturday, weekly shopping trips to Walmart, the mall, and an Asian supermarket each Saturday afternoon, as well as one-time special events such as hiking, camping, bowling, amusement parks, visiting local museums, visiting the zoo, going to the movies, a special dinner, or going to the beach.

If you’re willing to get involved and try new things, you will NOT be bored!