Los Angeles is one of the most international cities in the United States. With the largest Asian and Latin communities in the country, the immense diversity allows for a multicultural experience for any student wishing to live here during college. In addition, if you’re into art or interested in the entertainment industry, this city might be perfect for you. Los Angeles is the seat of movie production and a lively art hub, where great minds connect to create.

Also, the weather in Los Angeles is one of the most forgiving in the United States. There’s no harsh winter to fear nor snow to plow. Last but not least, there’s a wide number of universities in Los Angeles for you to choose from. Although pursuing higher education in the United States can be very costly, there are some affordable options you can find in this city.

Here, we’ve gathered the ones that might be your best option if you’re looking for maximum savings. In this article, we will be looking at the cheap universities in Los Angeles.

What is the Cheapest University in Los Angeles for International Students?

The cheapest university in Los Angeles for international students is the California State University, Los Angeles. The tuition fee is approximately 16,286 per academic year. But aside from this, you should also consider other fees such as books, accommodation, health insurance and others. The total cost of attendance may vary and you can use the university’s cost calculator to see an estimate of your expenses.

Los Angeles’ Cheap Universities

1. Santa Monica College (SMC)

Santa Monica College (SMC) was founded in 1929. This cheap college in Los Angeles has a great transfer rate. Therefore, if you’re thinking of starting at a smaller institution such as this one and then going to a 4-year university, this might be the right choice. It’s one of the most affordable in the Los Angeles greater area. With over 90 fields to choose from, you’re bound to find an option that’s right for you. The student body is very large, with about 30,000 students enrolled each year. It’s also a great institution to attend if you have a job. Part-time studies are very common at SMC. However, if you’re an international student, keep in mind that you have to take at least 12 units to maintain your visa.

Here, we’re only showing you the tuition fee. Mandatory health insurance and additional fees are not included. This is an estimate of what your tuition fee might be for an entire year.

2. Los Angeles City College (LACC)

This public community college was established in 1929. It’s located in East Hollywood, and it shared headquarters with the California State University for a few years. Furthermore, LACC’s current campus used to be the campus of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). This college has been educating people for 90 years, and it offers over 100 different options to pursue. They have different levels of education, from transfer programs to vocational studies.

The tuition fees shown here correspond to payments you’ll have to do for a year of studies. However, depending on certain things, your studies might be free during your first year. This includes music programs as well as graduates from LAUSD high schools. In addition, there are numerous options for financial aid, available mostly to national students.

3. Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science

This university was founded out of the need for more medical professionals in the area of South Los Angeles. It’s comprised of two different colleges and a school: the School of Nursing, the College of Science and Health, and the College of Medicine. The school is a very small one. However, it has established various agreements with other higher education institutions. There are agreements with UCLA in which students course their first two years at UCLA and then do their clinical rotations at Drew. Another thing that makes this institution stand out is the fact that community leaders are involved. This cheap university in Los Angeles has been integrated into research activities at the university. This way, students and faculty can focus on projects that will be truly useful to their local community.

Here, we are providing you with information about the cost of  per unit at Charles R. Drew University. There are no distinctions between in-state, out-of-state, and international students. They promote applications from international students; however, there might be an added fee either at the moment of applying or when paying the enrollment fee.

4. California State University, Los Angeles (Cal State LA)

California State University, Los Angeles is one of the most sought-after institutions in the city. After it was founded in 1947, this university has expanded greatly. So much so that it had to move from its original campus, which was shared with the LACC. It now offers over 200 undergraduate and graduate degrees and there are also four doctorate courses available. This university has over 20,000 students enrolled each year. Due to the high demand, acceptance rates are very low.

The tuition fees presented here correspond to a year of studies. As you can see, the price is considerably higher for international students as well as those that come from other states. This is because Cal State LA strongly encourages higher education in the area, although it gladly welcomes all out-of-state or out-of-country students.

5. Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM)

This is the newest and the most expensive institution in this listing. It’s a private, for-profit institution. Founded in 1969, it has four campuses in California, including this one in Los Angeles. As the name indicates, the programs offered here are focused on fashion, graphic design, and entertainment. The Los Angeles campus is the main one. Therefore, this cheap university in Los Angeles has features such as the FIDM Museum & Galleries as well as a very modern design studio.

The tuition presented here corresponds to one year of studies. Given the specialized subjects taught at the institute as well as the fact that it’s private, prices are much higher than other options in this article.

These were some of LA’s most affordable options. Don’t forget to check for scholarships and financial aid options that might further help you to achieve your goal. Thanks to the wide number of programs offered at some of these institutions, it’s very likely that you’ll find one that offers studies in the area you’re searching for.

I hope that this article on cheap universities in Los Angeles was helpful. Make sure to also check out the Available Programs for International Students!