ELS Language Centers/Philadelphia
c/o Saint Joseph’s University
5414 Overbrook Avenue
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19131

Telephone: (215) 473-4430
FAX: (215) 473-3220
E-mail: phi@els.edu
Website: sju.edu/els

Center Hours

Monday – Friday: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Closed weekends and holidays.

Students with confirmed housing reservations should report directly to their assigned housing upon arrival (not to the Center).

Housing Check-in and Departure

We recommend that students who have made arrangements for university housing or homestay accommodations should arrive on the Sunday before their course begins.

Housing Check-In Hours: Sunday

University Dormitory: 8:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.
Homestay: 8:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.

Students arriving later than the hours noted above will need to spend the night in a hotel and check into housing the following day. Early arrivals will need to stay in a hotel until the Sunday before the session begins.

Students with confirmed residence hall accommodations at Rashford Hall should report to their confirmed housing for check-in. A $100 damage deposit will be collected upon arrival.Students should plan to check out of housing by 11:00 am on the Saturday at the end of the session.

Center Registration Information

New students should report to the Center on Monday between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 8:20 a.m. to register for the ELS Language Centers placement test, which begins at 8:30 a.m.

When you register at your Center, you will need to bring your passport, funds to pay tuition and housing (or a receipt showing pre-payment), and the materials contained in your acceptance package.


From the Airport
A taxi from the Philadelphia International Airport to St. Joseph’s University will cost approximately $40 plus tip. Travel time from the airport is approximately 30 minutes. Taxi drivers should be given the following directions from the airport for dormitory students:
-76 West to Exit 339 (Saint Joseph’s University)
-City Avenue to 52nd Street (turn left)
-Right at first driveway to Rashford Hall Dormitory

The Center is closed on weekends. Please go directly to your confirmed housing assignment if you arrive during the weekend.

Recommended Hotels

If you will need hotel accommodations prior to beginning your course, we recommend the following hotels. Advance reservations are recommended. Advise the hotel that you are an ELS Language Centers student at St. Joseph’s University when making the reservation. Prices (13% hotel tax included) are subject to change.

Holiday Inn $99 + tax per night
City Line and Presidential Blvd. Tel: (215) 477-0200

Hilton Hotel $139 + tax per night
4200 City Avenue Tel: (215) 879-4000

Housing and Meals

ELS Language Centers students have a choice of university housing, homestay or apartment accommodations.

  • University housing is available year-round, but advance reservations are required. Students are placed at: Rashford Hall, 5200 City Avenue

Students are housed in two-bedroom/two-bathroom apartments with a living room and kitchen. Two students are placed in each bedroom. Students have free cable television, high-speed internet access, and telephones. The apartments are air-conditioned and linens are provided. No meals are included. Students have kitchens in each apartment. Students may also purchase meals at the university cafeteria by putting money on their university ID card and using it as a debit card. Meals cost approximately $5-$8.

Students must pay a $100 security deposit upon arrival, either in cash or travelers checks. This money is refunded at the end of the session. Married couples may live together in a one-bedroom apartment at Rashford Hall when both husband and wife are attending the Center.

  • Host family accommodations offer private room lodging with an American host and 14 weekly meals. A continental breakfast and a prepared dinner are provided daily. To guarantee a homestay for your first session of attendance, advance reservations are required.
  • Corporate apartments are available at Homewood Suites, Hilton Hotel. With four weeks notice, apartments can be rented for a minimum period of four weeks. Apartments are fully furnished with every amenity. Prices include daily maid service, free breakfast each morning, free “Happy Hours”, indoor pool, fitness center and many other features.
    Studio: $2200 per month
  • One-bedroom: $2500 per month
  • Credit card information must be provided to reserve the apartment. Students may either walk or take a 5-minute bus ride to ELS.


The climate in Philadelphia varies with the season. Summers are very warm, winters are cold with some snow, spring and fall are colorful with mild temperatures.

Average Temperatures (Celsius)
Time Minimum Mean Maximum
Jan.-March -1.2 5.7 12.7
April-June 6.6 15.2 23.8
July-Sept. 17.1 23.6 30
Oct.-Dec. 9 17.3 25.6


The estimated cost of tuition, fees, housing and miscellaneous expense is noted on your Form I-20. The cost of housing will depend on the type of housing that you select. We estimate that all students need a minimum of $400 in personal funds for each four-week period to cover miscellaneous expenses such as bus transportation, personal items and entertainment.

Please refer to the ELS Language Centers application/insert for detailed prices on tuition and other fees as well as housing.

Payment and Fees

All fees are payable in full when you first register and, thereafter, at the time of registration for each additional session of study.

Tuition and housing (campus residence hall or homestay) may be paid by:

  • Traveler’s Checks
  • Money Order or Bank Draft
  • Credit Card – Visa, Master Card, JCB American Express or Diners Club
  • Wire Transfer

Bank checks not drawn on a U.S. bank are not accepted. If payment must be made by wire transfer, it is very important that you advise the bank when sending the funds to reference your name and ELS Language Centers student number as the originator of the wire. A copy of the bank wire notification should be sent by fax to the Center to assist with tracing receipt of the funds. Funds should be wire-transferred to ELS Language Centers at the following:

Bank of America
San Francisco Commercial Banking Office,
Unit 1499
345 Montgomery Street
San Francisco, CA 94104

Account Name: ELS Language Centers
Account #: 1499903686
Routing #: 121000358

Additional Information

Smoking is not permitted in the Center. Smoking is also not permitted in Rashford Hall.