About the International Student Program

Skyline College is located next to the great city of San Francisco and in the high tech capital of the world, Silicon Valley. Our beautiful campuses have gorgeous panoramic views of the San Francisco Bay Area. Skyline College offers high quality programs with award-winning faculty and provides individual attention to our students. Our international student advisors take pride in ensuring that students successfully transfer to top colleges and universities. Our Transfer Admission Guarantee enhances opportunities for students to transfer to the seven University of California campuses. We are among the top transfer colleges for California State Universities. Our students study in world class facilities and they enjoy small class size and dedicated attention from faculty who have doctoral and masters’ degrees.

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Skyline College offers the following three programs:

Transfer Programs

Transfer Programs provide an opportunity for international students to complete lower division courses at a lower cost at Skyline College and transfer the earned units to a four-year university in California (University of California, California State University and private universities), or to a university in another state. 

Transfer Pathway Program - San Mateo Colleges has formed partnerships with a number of four-year universities throughout the United States to offer conditional admission to international students through our Transfer Pathway Program. These conditional admission guarantees are based on completing the specific criteria outlined in the letter.

Skyline College is your bridge to attend :

University of California (UC)

  • UC Berkeley
  • UC Davis*
  • UC Irvine*
  • UC Los Angeles
  • UC Merced*
  • UC Riverside*
  • UC San Diego
  • UC San Francisco
  • UC Santa Barbara*
  • UC Santa Cruz*


California State University (CSU)

  • Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
  • CSU East Bay
  • CSU Los Angeles
  • CSU Monterey Bay
  • CSU Northridge*
  • CSU Humboldt
  • CSU Sacramento
  • San Francisco State University*
  • San Jose State University*


*Transfer Pathway Program available

Out of State Public Universities

  • Arizona State University*
  • Central Michigan University*
  • Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis*
  • Portland State University*
  • Plattsburgh State University of New York*
  • University of Michigan - Flint*
  • University of Cincinnati* 
  • University of Oregon*
  • University of Washington - Tacoma*
  • University of Wisconsin - Stout*


Private Universities

  • Cornell University
  • Harvard University
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Notre Dame de Namur University*
  • Saint Michael's College*
  • Stanford University
  • Tufts University
  • University of Chicago
  • Yale University


and many other universities in America!


See more information about the Transfer Programs


Associate Degree Programs

Associate degree programs are two-year programs, Associate degree in Arts (AA degree) and Associate Degree in Science (AS degree) that will be awarded when the student successfully completes all necessary graduation requirements (60 degree applicable units/credits) with a required Grade Point Average (GPA).

See the list of Associate Degree Programs


One Year Certificate Programs

Skyline College offers a one year certificate program, for those students who wish to attend an American college for one year, or for those who wish to improve upon a skill or trade. This program provides an opportunity for students to complete a certain amount of courses in a specific subject and receive a Certificate in that field.

See the list of One Year Certificate Programs


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Skyline College does not offer on-campus housing/dormitory. International students usually rent a furnished room in a home nearby or rent an apartment.

    • Option 1: Homestay

Our college can refer you to agencies that help you locate private homes where you can rent a room with or without meals. Be sure to contact the agencies below one month ahead of your arrival. The arrangement of homestay is like the following:

Room only

Room and breakfast

Room with breakfast and dinner

International Student Placement (ISP) ISP has successfully placed thousands of international students with host families in the San Francisco Bay Area. They place each student in a living situation where they will feel comfortable and secure. ISP hosts are personally interviewed in their home, screened and selected for the program. Host homes are located within a reasonable distance to the student's school, typically within a 5-mile radius. Hosts are a variety of families and come from a variety of ethnic backgrounds that matches the interest and needs of international students. ISP provides support during the student's stay and airport pick up (for a fee).

Download and complete application form (http://isphomestays.com/college-programs/). Tel +1 650-947-8879 Universal Student Housing (USI) is a homestay provider for colleges and universities in California. Our goal is to provide the best service possible and to make sure our students are happy in their homestay. USH offers students 3 different homestay options:

Students may apply using our easy online application process. For more information visit www.usaish.com/hmst.htm or call 1.866.900.4874.

    • Option 2: Rent an apartment

The rent of a one bedroom apartment ranges between $1100 and $1,500 per month. Students must be prepared for additional costs of utilities, (gas, electricity, and telephone). There is required security deposit of the first month rent (refundable). The International Student Office at each college maintains a file of rooms in private homes, and provides students with housing information upon their arrival. New students should plan to arrive at least two weeks before registration. Early arrival is necessary to provide adequate time to locate housing and become familiar with the area.

    • Option 3: Rent a Room

The rent of a furnished room in the San Mateo, San Bruno and Redwood City area ranges between $900 and $1200 per month. This price usually covers all utilities and kitchen privileges. Students are responsible for their own personal expenses, such as cooking, laundry, telephone bill, etc.

Other Resources

  • Craigslist lists a wide variety of housing in and around the San Francisco Bay area.
  • SFGate lists housing in the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • San Mateo County Times focuses primarily on San Mateo County and is a good source for housing on the Peninsula.
  • San Mateo Daily Journal provides local housing information.

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International students need at least US $20,000 per academic year to cover school and living expenses. Excluding all travel expenses, around US 10,000 per semester is required. Additional funds must be available for those who plan to remain in the United States during the summer. College fees are due and payable at the time of registration.

Costs are estimates based on the 2014/2015 academic year and are subject to change.





(12 units @ $265 per unit)

*Including Foreign Student Tuition, Capital Outlay Fee and Enrollment Fee.

$3,180 USD

$6,360 USD

Books and Supplies

$300 USD

$600 USD

Health Insurance**

**Int’l students are required to purchase the pre-approved health insurance plan.

$600 USD

$1,200 USD

Local Public Transportation

$200 USD

$400 USD


$5,500 USD

$11,000 USD


$220 USD



$10,000 USD

$20,000 USD


[Note] If you are bringing a dependent, add the following annual cost:      

  • Spouse = $4,500
  • 1 child/no spouse = $3,500
  • Each additional child = $2,000

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Medical Insurance

Due to the high cost of medical expenses all International students are required to purchase the pre-approved medical insurance from our district for a total of $1,200 per year. You may choose to purchase by semester; each term costs $600. This does not cover dental. Government sponsored students are exempt from this requirement.

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International Student Scholarship – Global Beca Foundation of San Mateo Colleges

There are a limited number of one time scholarships for new international students ranging from $250 to $1000 each depending on availability of funds.

To apply for the Global Beca Foundation International Student Scholarship, complete the required application form available here. Then return the completed application and all relevant documents by fax or email to:

Jing Luan, Ph.D. Vice Chancellor, Educational Services and Planning San Mateo CCCD Cañada College, College of San Mateo, & Skyline College Fax: 650.574.6566 or Email: luan@smccd.edu

Awards are granted based on achievement and the potential for involvement in student leadership positions at the college.


Scholarships are also available for current international students. For more information, please visit the financial aid office website.

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