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Any advice for low tuition colleges for international students in San Francisco or close? I really need financial aid, but they do not offer financial aid to international students that easily. I wanna major in communication and history of art.

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Grant’s Answer

Hello, I think that it will be very difficult to get a visa to study History of Art in San Francisco, there are different situations for medicine, Architecture, teaching and computing and similar.

Generally studying in the USA is one of the most expensive places to do so in terms of fees and accommodation, you will be in a much better position if you study an internet based (online) arts course from a College in the UK or USA while still living in Srilanka and build a portfolio of written studies into Art, when you can it would also be very good to do a trip abroad to take in some art and write a study into a selection of art and antiquity such as;

A visit to the UK taking in Europe, maybe 2-3 weeks and visiting- The National Gallery, Edinburgh Scotland, the Kelvingrove Gallery of Art and Museum in Glasgow, House for an Art Lover Glasgow (Charles Rennie Mackintosh ) the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Tate Modern Gallery London and the Louvre Paris France.

(Lots of Art history and subject matter there)

I think that a portfolio on fine art from Srilanka and maybe India as well will stand you very very well, there are jobs at gelleries in London and Glasgow and all of this will make your CV stand out for jobs in the USA and Australia in addition to the UK, you could become a specialist in Art.

I have good photographs of art from numerous places I have visited which I can send to you and you can use them to start writing about Art and filling up your portfolio of writing.

I can also contact people in advertising and car advertising to get hold of historic art used in advertising and put you in contact with some local Scottish and English Artists.

My American friend's mother is an artist in New Mexico , I can contact her and ask about the art scene in the US, there is a big art community in Rockport Massachusetts which would be good to visit and complete a study on, I have been there, it is open in summer.

There are a number of avenues that you can follow to get financial assistance and sponsorship

Please ask me any questions that you may have

Grant, Scotland

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Amanda’s Answer

San Francisco is a great place to live and work! It is expensive though, so I understand the need to find a school that provides generous financial aid packages. When looking at university websites, you'll want to find the tuition cost, but don't let a high tuition price scare you away. Try to find the percentage of students that receive financial aid (this will give you an idea of how generous the school is with their financial aid and scholarship packages). Some schools will also have a "Price Calculator" on their websites that allow you to estimate the price of tuition after financial aid. From my own personal experience, I have noticed that private schools tend to provide more financial aid than state schools (since they may have more private donors/alum willing to fund scholarships for students)

San Francisco also recently passed a program that provides free community college for all residents. This would require you to become a resident of the city of San Francisco first, but after that you can attend classes and work towards your Associates Degree for free! After earning your Associates Degree, you could transfer to a 4 year college or university to complete your Bachelors (and save on the total cost of tuition since you'd only have 2 years to pay for instead of all 4).

Some schools in/near the San Francisco Bay Area that you may want to look into:

  • University of San Francisco
  • City College of San Francisco
  • Santa Clara University
  • St. Mary's College

Amanda recommends the following next steps:

Look into City College of San Francisco and the SF free community college program
Reach out to private colleges in the SF Bay Area and ask about financial aid packages for international students

Thank you so much ! I found this answer to be very helpful! I will definitely take up your advice! Angel W.