Unless you're awarded a full scholarship tuition will be the largest of your educational costs. Each university is different, so please check with the schools you are considering to get a more accurate estimation. Roughly, the cost for tuition will range from $5,000 to $25,000 per year. Public universities usually charge lower tuition than private universities, with community colleges typically having the lowest tuition costs out of all public schools.
Room and board
Again, dependent on the size of your scholarship this cost will vary, but it is normally the second largest element of your education cost. Like tuition the cost for room and board will also differ greatly between schools, so contact your list of schools for a more reliable total. A rough estimate is between $3,000 and $10,000. If you choose to live off campus and getting your own apartment, you will need to take into account the cost of furnishing that apartment, monthly utilities bills (such as water and electricity), and your transportation costs to and from school. It is common in your first year to live on campus, and for an international student this makes the most amount of sense. Please note, on campus housing closes during the summer, so if you do not plan on returning home for summer, you will need to find other arrangements.
On top of tuition, colleges and universities will charge fees; these usually come in the form of student activity fees. These fees help to support student organizations as well as on campus programs. The fees are normally quite small, ranging from $100 - $400 per year.
Books and supplies
Unless covered in your scholarship, students must pay for their text books, as well as supplies such as notebooks, paper, pens, etc. You can sometimes lower this cost by buying used books from the school’s bookstore or online. An accurate estimation for these costs is between $500 and $1,500.
Healthcare in the United States is overwhelmingly high, and the majority of universities require all international students to acquire health insurance. I strongly believe that it is a necessity for all foreign students to possess health insurance to protect themselves from incredibly high medical bills should they fall ill or be involved in some type of accident. Be careful not to get roped into paying for university medical insurance as this can sometimes be far too expensive. If you do some research you will find a number of companies that offer medical insurance specifically for international students at very reasonable rates. Insurance plans can cost anywhere in between $400 and $1,300.
No matter how good your scholarship, you will always be required to pay for your own travel. Calculating the cost of travel between your university and home is important before making a decision. To give yourself the best idea of the costs, you should work out how many times during your time in the US will you travel home, and then times that by the price of the airline fare. During my time in the US I feel I have saved a great deal on flights by booking return tickets well in advance.
These include general living expenses; shopping, eating out, entertainment etc. Depending on where you live and your lifestyle this will differ.
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