UW Advance

At a glance

What: UW Advance Program – A life-changing experience for international students at an American University

Where: The University of Wisconsin–Madison in Madison, Wisconsin, USA

Questions? Email Christine Inthachith at christine.inthachith@wisc.edu or call 608‑262‑1156.

UW Advance logo


What participants say about the program:
I’ve obtained time-management skills, teamwork skills, and friendships that will benefit my future studies and my life.
~ Jiaqian (Carol) Fang, student from Zhejiang Normal University

UW Advance student with Bucky Badger.

UW Advance student and Bucky Badger having fun on Library Mall.

UW Advance Program –
The perfect place to study abroad

UW Advance students holding out freshly-picked tomatoes on a farm visit

The University of Wisconsin–Madison is a top-ranked American university known for its academics, influential research and faculty, a beautiful lakeside setting, a global network of alumni, and a welcoming atmosphere for international students. In the UW Advance program, students can enjoy the benefits of this renowned institution.

About the program

International student posing with a wall of books
UW Advance is designed for undergraduate and graduate students from international universities. Students spend three to four weeks engaging in a life-changing experience tailored to the specifications of their university.


  • Coursework includes 15 hours of English language and 10-15 hours of thematic courses per week
  • Engaging, experiential-style classes, lectures, and field trips
  • Workshops involving presentations, debates, and discussions
  • Program thematics chosen by your university. Past topics include business, innovation, education, agriculture, leadership, science, and data analysis

Culture & Socializing

  • Social activities to engage with local students, including talent shows and sporting events
  • Cultural events, including concerts & theatre, art workshops, volunteering, and cultural exchanges
  • Tours of campus, departments, and museums
  • Field trips to nearby Chicago, water parks, or Devil’s Lake State Park (optional)

Students do not earn credit but gain valuable understanding of the University of Wisconsin–Madison and its resources. They also acquire skills, knowledge, independence, and lifelong memories.
Students taking part in Sibling's Day

What to expect


Participants live in a university residence hall on campus. Each of these rooms is air-conditioned and has a small refrigerator. A housekeeping service cleans shared bathrooms and common areas each day.

Campus AccessInternational student sitting on the shore of Lake Mendota

UW Advance students have access to a variety of university resources during their enrollment, including:

  • Classrooms and study areas
  • Cafes
  • Recreational centers
  • Computer labs
  • Study activity centers
  • Libraries (without borrowing privileges)
  • Campus bus services
  • Free Wi-Fi


Both the city and the university are thoroughly committed to safety. The Federal Bureau of Investigation recently ranked Madison the fourth safest city in America. On the university campus, an electronic locking system secures the exterior doors of the residence halls. These doors remain locked at all times, and no one is allowed in without a University of Wisconsin–Madison identification card.

Farm visit on the UW campus

For more information

For details about designing a UW Advance program for your university, please contact one of our program directors.

Photo: Christine InthachithChristine Inthachith (MA, UW-Madison) directs international non-credit programs in the Division of Continuing Studies, including the precollege American Culture and English (ACE) program and UW Advance Programs, customizable programs for international students age 18 and older. Christine has extensive international experience, including consulting, teaching, and volunteer work in Southeast Asia and Central America. christine.inthachith@wisc.edu.

Photo of Monique LuMonique Lu (BA, Chinese Language and Literature, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China) is the assistant director of the UW Advance program and ACE. She provides general assistance and support to the international noncredit programs in the Division of Continuing Studies. monique.lu@wisc.edu.

Photo: Sara Bembenek-SaborioSara Bembenek-Saborio (BBA Marketing and TESOL Certification, UW-Madison, Wisconsin) is the Program Coordinator/ESL Instructor for UW Advance. She coordinates curriculum and teaches the English as a Second Language component. She has been an English as a Second Language instructor for over 12 years, both domestically and abroad in Costa Rica. sara.bembenek@wisc.edu.

Picture yourself at UW-Madison!

Students taking part in Sibling's Day