Learn About Us

The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc. (ILC) of Malden, MA, is a not-for-profit organization that gives immigrants a voice in three ways:

  • The English Language Program provides free, year-round English classes to immigrant and refugee adults in Greater Boston to help them become successful workers, parents and community members.
  • The Public Education Institute informs Americans about the economic and social contributions of immigrants in our society.
  • The Institute for Immigration Research, a joint venture with George Mason University, conducts research on the economic contributions of immigrants.

History

1992

Diane Portnoy opened The Immigrant Learning Center on November 9, 1992, with three teachers, 60 students and 80 on the waitlist.

1996

Received first grant from MA Dept. of Education. Used funds to expand from three to four levels of English classes. The ILC continues to receive government grants, totaling roughly 20 percent of the annual budget.

2000

Started first citizenship class and created first computer lab.

2002

Held ribbon cutting ceremony on April 5, 2002, to commemorate placing The Immigrant Learning Center’s name on the building and the growth of the first 10 years from three classrooms to three full floors of English Education.

2003

Formed the Immigrant Theater Class where students learn to express themselves in English by writing and performing plays.

Launched the Public Education Program to educate Americans that immigrants are assets to the country (renamed Public Education Institute in 2010).

2006

Launched the Literacy Program to address the needs of students with literacy challenges.

2008

Established the Senior Conversation Class for students aged 60 and above who may otherwise be socially isolated.

2010

Expanded to the fourth floor. Now occupying four out of five floors at 442 Main Street.

2011

Co-sponsored the first, annual Swearing-In Ceremony for new American citizens with the City of Malden.

2012

The ILC Public Education Institute held its first online workshop for educators. The Institute now produces multiple webinars per year for multiple audiences reaching up to 1,000 people at a time.

Partnered with George Mason University to create the Institute for Immigration Research.

Held first, annual The ILC Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards Dinner.

Launched Immigrant Entrepreneur Hall of Fame.

Debuted book, Immigrant Struggles, Immigrant Gifts

2016

Piloted the English for Entrepreneurs Class.

2017

Added Next Steps Class to focus on helping students reach education and job goals.

Modernized computer lab with grant from The Adelaide Breed Bayrd Foundation.

Served 9,500 students to date from 118 countries and 89 Greater Boston communities.