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ESL English as a Second Language

The ESL program at Harford Community College helps foreign-born adults improve their listening, speaking, reading, writing, and communication skills.

English as a Second Language (ESL)

All students interested in enrolling in ESL classes must attend a FREE pre-orientation session. To be eligible, you must be 18 years of age or older, NOT currently in high school, and NOT an F1 or J1 Visa holder.  

Pre-orientation gives you the opportunity to:

  • Receive information and ask questions about the classes.
  • Speak privately with an advisor about your educational needs and goals. 
  • Sign up for ESL classes.

TO REGISTER for the next available

Lorraine Peniston, 443.412.2406 or 
Marla Goffin, 443.412.2674,


After attending a pre-orientation session, students attend an advising session for intake and assessment, a classroom etiquette workshop, and MS TEAMS classroom training. This step is mandatory.

Once you have completed pre-orientation and advising sessions, you may begin your FREE ESL classes. ESL classes are held two evenings a week throughout the year at various sites in Harford County. Course content includes:

  • individual and group instruction
  • listening/speaking skills
  • practice skills for everyday living

Participating ESL students will have mandatory attendance and online learning requirements and are responsible for the purchase of books and materials.

Every time I come to class I learn a lot of different things. The teacher always helps us whenever we have a problem. My English improved a lot. I feel more comfortable and confident when communicating. I understand more about America’s history and culture.
Mai T. • Student

Countries of Origin of Students Served in ESL Program in 2020-2021

Brazil | Bulgaria | Burkina | Faso | Cameroon | Chad | China | Colombia | Congo | Costa Rica | Dominican Republic | Ecuador | Egypt | El Salvador | Eritrea | Germany | Guatemala | Haiti | Honduras | India | Iran | Italy | Ivory Coast | Japan | Kenya | Korea | Latvia | Liberia | Lithuania | Mexico | Myanmar (Burma) | Niger | Nigeria | Pakistan | Peru | Puerto Rico | Romania | Russian Federation | Serbia | Thailand | Togo | Turkey | Turkmenistan | Ukraine | Uruguay | Uzbekistan | Venezuela | Vietnam | Wales

The ESL program is supported by federal and state funds granted by the MD Department of Labor.