Best Universities and Colleges in Los Angeles for International Students

best la colleges

Studying in the United States is an enriching experience that offers many opportunities. For example, colleges in Los Angeles, one of the most sought-after destinations for international students in the USA, welcome over 70,000 of them annually to its vibrant city! Over the seventeen years between 2004 and 2021, Los Angeles has welcomed over 360 thousand international students – making it the second most popular destination in terms of foreign student enrollment.

top 10 city by enrollment

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Given their prestige, it is unsurprising that colleges such as the University of Southern California and the renowned UCLA are highly sought after.

Regarding the cost of living, Los Angeles may be expensive compared to other cities in America; however, tuition fees in Los Angeles universities are usually more economical than those that are out-of-state.

Moving to Los Angeles to study presents a great opportunity for international students who want access to top-quality education combined with a vibrant city lifestyle! Besides, universities in LA are a real aesthetic pleasure!

Don’t believe us? Read this article to find the best colleges in LA for international students! You’ll be surprised by all that the city has to offer!

Further in the Article:

What LA Colleges Have to Offer to International Students

  • Vibrant student life. Los Angeles offers a variety of benefits to international students in US, with top universities and colleges that provide exceptional academic opportunities. In addition, the city’s vibrant culture, unique art scene, and variety of attractions make it an ideal destination for those looking to pursue their studies in the US. 
  • Scholarships. Students at LA colleges can take advantage of numerous scholarships and grants geared towards international students, including the UCLA Achievement Award, the USC International Scholars Program, and the Cal Grants Financial Assistance program. These scholarships provide essential funds to help pay for tuition fees and other associated costs.
  • Extended support for international students. In addition, many of the top LA universities have dedicated resources to support international students. For example, UCLA’s Center for International Education provides information about visas, health insurance, and more. USC also has Global Student Services, which assists participants with housing options, cultural orientation, and career exploration.

These are only a few ways universities in the Los Angeles area make their programs attractive to international students. With plentiful scholarship options and dedicated support services, students can get the most out of their studies while enjoying all that the good universities in Los Angeles have to offer!

Colleges in Los Angeles Area for International Students 

The various colleges and universities located in Los Angeles present limitless possibilities for international students seeking diverse academic experiences.

My search for the college in the USA was long and tiring. The key discovery was that the best universities for international students may not necessarily be the most famous schools. So my advice to international students is keep searching till you find the college that meets all of your expectations.

Private universities in the city, such as UCLA and USC, typically have higher tuition fees than their public counterparts, but they often offer more extensive scholarships and programs for international students. Public colleges in the LA area also provide excellent educational opportunities at lower costs.

For example, California State University Los Angeles (CSULA) has estimated annual tuition fees of $8,266 for out-of-state students; compared to UCLA’s out-of-state fee of $45,568, this is significantly lower. Furthermore, CSULA offers a Global Citizen Scholarship Program, which awards full tuition fees to those who qualify.

International students can indeed study in public colleges like CSULA in Los Angeles. However, they should be aware that many of the services and resources available to private university students may not always be available in public institutions.

So, they should research carefully before choosing to get the best fit for their needs!

Private Colleges in Los Angeles for International Students

Los Angeles offers a distinct possibility for international students seeking excellent education due to the presence of some of the finest universities worldwide. Los Angeles allows international students to access top universities and attain an excellent education. 

The Niche rating system has completed a list of universities in Los Angeles and identified three private colleges in LA as being the best for international students: The California Institute of Technology, Harvey Mudd College, and Pomona College.

top private colleges in la

  • Caltech is a beacon of excellence and has earned worldwide renown as one of the most reputable universities in the United States and the best university in Los Angeles. It is proud to present a broad selection of courses and programs open to international students. Its scientific focus and dedication to research have put Caltech in a league of its own among universities worldwide. Despite the high yearly tuition of about $54,000, requiring about 50% of the international applicants accepted into Caltech to seek financial assistance, one positive aspect is the availability of various scholarship opportunities.
  • Harvey Mudd College is another excellent choice for international students looking to study in private universities in Southern California. At this university, you can explore the fields of engineering, mathematics, science, and social sciences while building your problem-solving skills. Tuition fees are somewhat modest compared to Caltech—approximately $50K per annum—with numerous scholarships available to help cover costs. Harvey Mudd College is proud to house international students from around the globe, comprising 7.3% of its total student body.
  • Situated in Claremont, California, Pomona College offers various courses and programs that cater to international students. This esteemed liberal arts college provides a unique opportunity to acquire knowledge and experience worldwide! The college endorses around 12% of international candidates for admission every year. The exceptional reputation of Pomona College, combined with annual tuition fees of only about $48k and access to numerous scholarships, make it an ideal destination and great university in Los Angeles for ambitious international students.

These are a few great private universities in los angeles for international students!

Public Colleges in Los Angeles for International Students

Whether you’re a native Californian or visiting from outside the state, attending one of the top universities in LA is unparalleled. From UCLA to CSULA and CSUN, each of these public institutions offers an individualized educational experience for students seeking higher education, so embark on your academic journey at one of these premier schools in The Golden State!

  • Attending the esteemed UCLA is a privilege that comes with a price tag. Yet, there are numerous scholarships and grants available to lessen the cost. Undergraduate international students pay an approximate tuition fee of $42,000 annually, which varies for graduate programs. With 5400 internationals studying at UCLA (12% of undergraduates and 20% of graduates), it’s clear why these generous financial aid opportunities exist to make higher education more accessible.
  • CSULA is also a great option for those pursuing higher education in California. It offers competitive tuition rates and financial aid packages, making it an affordable option for many students and one of the best universities in Los Angeles. Tuition fees for international undergraduate students are approximately $18,000 per year, while the cost of graduate tuition varies by program. California State University, Los Angeles is home to a diverse student population, with 1,641 international students and an impressive number of undergraduates — 1,318!
  • California State University, Northridge (CSUN) is a public research university located in Los Angeles that strives to provide access to high-quality learning experiences for all of its diverse communities. Domestic learners pay a tuition fee of approximately $7,000 annually. At the same time, international students will be charged around $19,000 per annum for the same privilege. However, CSUN offers several scholarships and financial aid packages that can help reduce costs. California State University, Northridge hosts an impressive student body of 2,485 international scholars. Of those students, 2,185 are pursuing undergraduate degrees.

These three public universities in Los Angeles provide excellent educational opportunities for international students. Their competitive tuition rates and financial aid packages make them an exceptional option for international students!

Colleges Near Los Angeles for International Students

Hunting for excellent learning possibilities outside of Los Angeles? Then you’re in luck! California boasts top-notch private universities like Cal Poly Pomona and the University of California, Irvine (UCI). Particularly noteworthy is the renowned California State University, Long Beach (CSULB).

Here are some of the best universities near Los Angeles California:

  • Cal Poly Pomona is one of the best universities in LA and a great option for those pursuing higher education in California. It offers competitive tuition rates, financial aid packages, and an impressive number of accepted international students each year. In addition, Cal Poly Pomona is nationally ranked for helping students achieve economic success after graduation. California State Polytechnic University, Pomona is proud to host 1,592 international students, with an impressive 1,396 undergraduates.

  • Boasting a plethora of notable accolades and accomplishments, the University of California, Irvine, stands as an iconic public research university located in Orange County, California. UCI offers more than 80 majors and over 230 minors for undergraduate students, as well as more than 100 graduate programs, making it one of the best California universities. Tuition fees at UCI vary depending on the student’s residency status. On average, domestic students will pay an estimated $13,000 annually for tuition, whereas international students must fork over nearly triple that amount — a whopping $30,000 yearly. However, several scholarships are available to help reduce costs, and this university of Los Angeles also offers financial aid packages. UC Irvine boasts an impressive and diverse international student population, with nearly 1,000 graduate students from over 65 countries worldwide attending each year.

  • California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) is a phenomenal option for anyone from abroad who wants to obtain an education in Los Angeles. This California international university is one of the largest universities in the state, giving students access to over 2,400 international scholars. CSULB excels at providing undergraduate and graduate programs covering many distinct fields like engineering, business administration, health sciences, and humanities. Tuition fees vary depending on each student’s residency status; it can range from $7,500 up to $20,000 annually. Nevertheless, various scholarships and financial aid packages can defray some of the associated costs of attending school!

 These are just a few of the excellent colleges and universities near Los Angeles that offer exceptional educational opportunities to international students!

Best Universities for International Students

most popular colleges for internationals

For international students seeking a world-renowned education, the US provides some of the best universities in existence. From MIT to Stanford to Harvard University, these institutions boast unparalleled academic excellence and many educational opportunities for those from other countries.

  • The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is a celebrated hub for forward-thinking scholarship and research, renowned globally as one of the most distinguished academic institutions. MIT provides over 65 undergraduate degree programs from its Cambridge campus that span different scientific and engineering-based domains. Unfortunately, domestic students and global attendees are expected to pay an annual tuition fee of around $52,000 to join this remarkable community. However, several scholarship options can help reduce costs, including need-based financial aid packages. Embracing 3,465 international students in the 2022-2023 academic year, MIT provided a unique opportunity for 11% of undergraduates and 42% of graduate students to pursue their degrees.
  • Situated in the blissful atmosphere of sunny California, Stanford University offers undergraduates a broad range of academic opportunities. These span numerous fields such as business, computer science, economics, engineering, and humanities. It also has numerous graduate degrees available in various disciplines, from mathematics to medicine. Stanford University’s tuition fees for each academic year range from $48,000 to $53,000 based on whether the student is in-state or out-of-state. The school also offers financial aid packages to help reduce costs associated with tuition fees. Stanford has an acceptance rate of 16% for international applicants.
  • Established in 1636, Harvard University stands as the oldest university in America. It is renowned across the globe for its exemplary academic excellence. It is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and provides nearly 70 undergraduate majors and hundreds of graduate programs throughout various domains ranging from arts to sciences! Harvard’s annual tuition fee is around $60,000 per year, regardless of residency status. Still, students who cannot afford this amount can request financial aid packages upfront. In addition, with an impressive total of 8,087 international students representing 150+ countries across the globe, Harvard became one of the world’s most diverse campuses in 2021–2022.

So, these are some of the best universities in the USA for international students. Every school provides a unique learning environment with superb faculty members, cutting-edge resources, and the initiative for pupils to learn from first-class research.

So, whether you are looking for undergraduate or graduate studies, these universities offer international students some of the most competitive educational opportunities out there!

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Alice Dartnell
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Alice is a life and success coach who empowers people to create a “life by design.” She specializes in bringing together time management, well-being, and productivity in crafting the life you want. She also works with organizations to maximize the output and mental wellness of the staff.