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Community Orientation Workshops

Community Orientation Workshop at the International Institute of Minnesota

Community Orientation Workshops, a partnership between the International Institute of Minnesota and Minnesota Council of Churches, provide English and life skills education across a variety of topics.  Individual workshops occur once weekly, covering themes including transportation and community resources, job readiness, financial literacy and  health literacy.  Classes are designed to assist adults in their transition to life in the U.S. while building literacy skills in the areas of reading, writing, listening and speaking English.

Blog Article: New Americans Find Their Bearings With Community Orientation Workshops

Student Eligibility

**Currently, all people are eligible for COW classes.**

Starting September, qualifying students are all adults with humanitarian protection immigrant status who have been living in the United States for five years or less. This includes individuals with refugee, asylee, certified victim of human trafficking, special immigrant visa, Amerasian or Cuban/Haitian entrant status.

Click to Register

Class Structure

Workshops are grouped in eight-week sessions. Students are welcome to begin classes at any point throughout the eight weeks and may remain in class as long as desired; however, workshops repeat after completion of eight weeks. During each session, there is a Level 1 class and a Level 2 class available; students can choose which class they would like to attend. Level 1 is for beginning-level English students who may need interpretation.

In-Person Classes

  • Level 1 (starting June 1): 11:15 am – 1:30 pm every Mon & Wed.
  • In-Person Level 2 (starting June 6): 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm every Mon & Tues.

Online Class

  • Level 2 (open now): 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm every Wed & Thurs


  • Week 1: Transportation
  • Week 2: Housing
  • Week 3: Community resources & navigation
  • Week 4: Financial literacy
  • Week 5: Health literacy
  • Week 6: Education and family adjustment
  • Week 7: Job readiness
  • Week 8: Community bridges & progress toward citizenship

Register for Community Orientation Workshops

For more details on class content or if you are interested in volunteering, contact Carrie Mann or Kaija Bergen


Join an information session to learn more. Information sessions are every Tuesday over Zoom. You can join via video or phone.

Visit the link below or dial in on your phone at the correct time to meet with the teacher.

Teacher: Kaija
1 – 2 p.m.

Click Here to Join on Zoom

or for phone access: Dial in at 1-312-626-6799 and enter Meeting ID: 565-606-9349

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