Jay is from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Management Hospitality at Prince Sultan University in Jeddah in 2013. In May 2016 he moved to Los Angeles with the hopes of getting his Master’s degree in Food and Catering from a college in the United States. I spoke with Jay this week to learn more about his path to university.
“ In 2016 I came to California on a scholarship from my government to improve my English skills and go to college. For international students, colleges in the United States require a TOEFL or EILTS score. This shows the university your English proficiency level. I didn’t know anything about the TOEFL test before I came to America, besides that it was an English test.
Before I could handle university material, I had to improve my writing skills. I decided to take the ESL program at MLI to work on this. Later, I decided to take the TOEFL class to prepare for the test. I want to get between an 80-90 score, which is high. Northridge College in California requires a score of 84 on the TOEFL test and Pomona college requires a score of 89.
Now I’ve been in the TOEFL course for 5 months. It is challenging. We focus on test strategies, academic vocabulary, reading comprehension and essay writing. We often need to summarize Academic readings and lectures. The TOEFL course has helped my English skills a lot. I can now summarize and understand the main ideas of a lecture, reading or listening without having to read all the details.
Besides the TOEFL test, I need to take the GMAT test to apply for my Master’s degree. I’m going to study with a private tutor to help me prepare for that. Once I have my TOEFL and GMAT scores, I will apply to Northridge, Pomona and Tampa State University in Florida.
My advice to future students who want to go to college is, know the college requirements for application BEFORE moving to America. This well help you choose the best English program for you.”