International Student Admissions

Interested in becoming an International F-1 Student?

Please view our requirements and application packet below. If you have any questions regarding our F-1 program or our Admission processes, please email

Application Deadlines

Admission for Fall Semester:  To ensure class availabilty we highly encourage interested applicants to submit their application by April 1st. Fall semester deadline for all application submissions is June 1st. 

Admission for Spring Semester: Admission for Spring semester students must complete all admissions requirements no later than November 1st.


F-1 Students General Admissions Information and Requirements

  • General Information

    1. An international student must register for and maintain a minimum of 12 units each semester while at Mesa College. Part-time F-1 status will not be approved. The registration status of all international students will be monitored by the college.
    2. Tuition currently is $402 per unit.
    3. A recent photograph must be submitted with an application (passport size is acceptable).
    4. Potential international students are advised that they must comply with all requirements of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services and of San Diego Mesa College to be admitted as international students.
    5. The college may restrict the number of international students accepted from a single country so that a variety of nations of the world will be represented in the student body.
    6. A transfer student from another accredited United States college or university must:
      • Follow set transfer procedures of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (formerly INS); and
      • Have pursued a full-time course of study with a minimum GPA of 2.0 (C) at the college the student was last authorized to attend (an official transcript must be filed).

  • Financial Information

    Each international student must submit verification of sufficient financial resources. The verification must indicate the ability of the student to finance each year's education and living expenses. Minimum of USD $47,000 required for one school year (two semesters).

    An international student attending the college must pay all mandatory fees, including nonresident tuition, enrollment fees and health services fees.

    Financial aid is not available to F-1 visa international students. However, international students are eligible to apply for scholarships to defray the cost of attending college in the United States.

    An international student may not accept off-campus employment while attending college unless approval is granted by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services and the International Student Advisor.

  • Health Clearance

    Students must be in good health and free of communicable diseases. The "Health Examination Report" form or a medical examination report by a physician must be submitted prior to admission. The medical examination must certify immunization against polio, diphtheria, measles, rubella, and tetanus, and must provide tuberculosis clearance. You must also include proof of COVID 19 vaccination with your application submission.

    Each student must present and maintain satisfactory evidence of an active medical insurance policy while in attendance.

  • English Proficiency Requirements

    To be considered for admission, an international student whose native language is not English must take an International Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and score a minimum of 500 on the paper-based test, 173 on the computerized version, or 61 on the internet-based test (official score report with 2 year recency). For questions regarding the TOEFL test, please visit the Educational Testing Service website at: Institutional reports or photocopies will not be accepted. 

    Students may petition to waive the TOEFL requirement under one of the following conditions:
    1. International English Language Testing System, or IELTS with a minimum score of 6.0 (official score report with 2 year recency) Official Test scores must be sent to San Diego Mesa from ETS or IELTS;
    2. SAT Evidence-based Reading and Writing (EBRW) with a minimum score of 450 (official score report with 2 year recency);
    3. Duolingo English Test score of 105 or higher is required. The test score must be from within the past two years.
    4. Graduate from a high school in the United States or abroad where English is the medium of instruction; or
    5. Completion of a transfer level college English composition course at an accredited United States institution with a grade of "C" or higher.

  • Academic Requirements

    An international student must have graduated from high school (or its equivalent) with a GPA of 2.0 ("C") or better.

    Students who have obtained a GED (General Education Development) must have attained a minimum score of 145, for a total minimum GED score of 580 for all 4 subjects.

    Transcripts of all previous secondary and college/university education must be filed, including an English translation of the transcript, before an application will be considered. Please include official trancsripts with your application submission. DO NOT send transcripts to San Diego Mesa College separately.

    An international student in possession of an associate degree or its equivalent (completion of about 60 semester units) or higher may be determined to be beyond the course offerings of Mesa College and is encouraged to apply to a four-year college or university.

  • Other Visa Status Students

    All other visa categories or immigrant classifications, must apply through General Admissions and work with the Residency Office to determine residency status.

    Students who are residing in the United States on other than F-1 student visas must comply with all restrictions on total units enrolled as specified by the Department of Homeland Security.

F-1 Concurrent Enrollment

To enroll in courses at Mesa College, F-1 students enrolled at institutions outside the San Diego Community College District must provide a concurrent enrollment letter. This letter, which must be issued by the Designated School Official (DSO) at your current institution, serves as a formal request for concurrent enrollment.


Please ensure that the letter includes:


  • The official letterhead of your current institution
  • The institution’s seal
  • Your full name
  • The specific semester for which you seek enrollment
  • A statement confirming your full-time status at your home institution


Submission of the original letter to the International Admissions Office is a prerequisite for class registration at Mesa College. Please coordinate with your International Student Advisor to facilitate this process.


For more information on F-1 concurrent enrollment, please contact the international admissions office by emailing

Celebrate International Education

Each year, we celebrate International Education Week by offering faculty presentations, student-led language exchanges, dialogues with internal students and Fulbright Scholars, an international film festival, and more! See all of our upcoming events tailored to international students and celebrating global awareness at Mesa College.

Explore events for international students
Photo of international student booth