International Students

Meet Online with International Students via Starfish
Group of students wearing orange West Valley shirts
Welcome International Students

West Valley College welcomes international students with a comprehensive curriculum that includes:

  • University transfer courses
  • Associate degrees and Associate Degree for Transfer
  • Occupational training programs
  • Personal or skill development opportunities

West Valley College is located in the "Heart of the Silicon Valley." Set amid 143 acres of Saratoga's beautiful foothills, West Valley College has been enriching the lives and careers of students from the Santa Clara Valley since 1964. Graduates from our more than 40 departments enjoy one of the highest successful transfer rates to four-year colleges and universities of any community college in the state. We also offer opportunities for vocational training or personal development in a vibrant atmosphere. West Valley College is proud of its respected faculty, counselors, staff, student services personnel and our students typically find that the education at West Valley has prepared them well for the competitive demands of both higher education and the working world.

At West Valley College, students may choose to attend course work offered in the day or evening schedule of classes. The college calendar is based on the semester system, and a double summer session. West Valley College confers Associate degrees (A.A. and A.S.), Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT), and general education certification for lower division university requirements. The college is fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Program Contact

Terry Eppley

Terry Eppley

International Students
Student Advisor/PDSO

(408) 741-4028
[email protected]
Student Services Center 201B

International Student Office

(408) 741-4028

International Student Office Fax

(408) 741-4076

Mailing Address

West Valley College
Attn: International Student Office
14000 Fruitvale Avenue
Saratoga, California 95070-5698, U.S.A.

Application Information

Admission documents issued one month following deadlines:

Out of Country Applicants

Semester Deadline
Fall Semester June 1
Spring Semester November 9

Transfer Students

Semester Deadline
Fall Semester June 5
Spring Semester December 1

Application Requirements

International Student Application Checklist

  • $100 Application Fee (Please complete credit card authorization form and scan/upload to online application form)
  • Signed International Financial Statement
  • An original bank letter or scholarship letter from the financial sponsor (bank letter of scholarship letter must be less than 3 months old at time of application)
  • Copy of your passport ID and expiration page
  • Copy of all US Visas, I-94s. I-20s, DS-2019s, or other legal documents if you are currently in the US (Transfer or Change of Status Applicants)
  • Official copies of transcripts from all high schools/colleges attended inside and outside of the US, with certified English translation (if necessary). Foreign transcripts may be uploaded to the online application. US transcripts must be sent directly from the US school to the International Student Office.
  • Personal letter from you explaining what you want to study at West Valley College and your educational goals.
  • Proof of medical immunizations
  • Proof of English Proficiency

International Student Application Forms

Note: This web page contains links to PDF documents that require the most current version of Adobe Reader to view. The Adobe Acrobat Reader may already be installed on your computer as a browser "plug-in" or standalone application. The Adobe Acrobat Reader can be downloaded for free at the Adobe Acrobat Reader download page.

Application Forms

  1. International Student Instruction Sheet (89 KB)
  2. International Student Application Checklist (135 KB)
  3. International Student Application (282 KB)
  4. International Student Financial Statement | Contact terri.eppleyFREEWEST_VALLEY for current form.
  5. International Student Immunization History (100 KB)
  6. International Student SEVIS I-20 Request (57 KB)

Fees and Expenses

Educational Cost

Fee Type Amount
Tuition Fee $367
Enrollment Fee $46
Health Insurance Fee $1,020 per semester
Other Student Fees Approximately $34 per semester


All fees and tuition are subject to change.

Consult the tuition refund schedule after dropping classes.

No financial aid is available for international students in the United States.

Full payment expected at time of registration. No partial payments allowed.


Housing and cost of living are estimated into your cost of education per DHS requirements. Each student is responsible for arranging their own housing. West Valley College does not have any housing or dormitories for students.

Total Expenses

The following provides a typical break down of expenses for one academic school year, which includes Fall and Spring semesters. Some of the amounts that are listed below are estimates. If a continuing student attends summer session or remains in the area during the summer break, additional money will be required. San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley are high cost of living areas.

Estimated Expenses for One Academic School Year

Fee Cost
Enrollment Fees (based on 24 units per year) $1,104
Tuition (based on 24 units per year) $8,808
Enrollment Fees (based on 30 units per year) $1,380
Tuition (based on 30 units per year) $11,010
Living Expense Estimate (10 months) $18,504
Health Insurance $2,040
Total $30,440 – $32,934

Transcript Evaluation Guidelines

West Valley College can accept foreign transcripts evaluated from any of the approved services listed on the NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services) membership list. WVC reviews transcript reports on a case by case basis. Credit can be granted providing that reports are detailed enough so evaluators can determine the placement of courses for West Valley's academic programs.

It is recommended that students who HAVE NOT completed an evaluation prior to attending West Valley College use either IERF (International Education Research Foundation) or ECE (Education Credential Evaluators - if planning to transfer to San Jose State University). When ordering an evaluation, students MUST request a detailed report (contact evaluation service for cost).

Students should note that acceptance of any foreign course work applies to West Valley College's academic programs ONLY. All four-year colleges conduct their own evaluation of foreign course work, and acceptance of this work is subject to the descretion of these institutions. Typically, four-year colleges require certified translations of transcripts for all university and college level course work completed outside of the United States. Students are encouraged to contact other colleges to find out more information.

Please be aware that West Valley College does not use foreign course work to satisfy CSU GE or IGETC requirements (with the exception of language other than English for IGETC).

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Application Deadlines for International Students?

Admissions documents are issued one month following the application deadline. Please check with the International Student Office to see if there is a late filing period beyond the posted deadline dates

  • Fall Semester: May 1
  • Spring Semester: November 1

How do I know that I am an International student and need a special packet?

  • Students or potential students, who need an admissions document to apply for F-1 visa status.
  • Students on F-1 visas who wish to transfer to West Valley College or potential students on visitor visa’s (B-1/B-2 or visa waiver) wanting to apply to F-1 visa status - please note that B-1/B-2 may NOT attend until change of status is approved from DHS.
  • Potential students who are on H-4, E-2, L-2 or F-2 turning 21 years of age are required to change to F-1 visa to continue their schooling in the United States.
  • Potential students applying from outside the United States who are not on H, E, or L visas.
    Students who are here on resident alien “green cards” are not considered International Students for application purposes and should apply directly to the college, NOT the International Student Program.
  • If you have a question about your residency or status, please call the International Student Counselor/PDSO or admissions,
    • Terry Eppley, Program Specialist/PDSO at (408) 741-4028
    • International Student Counselor at (408) 741-2694

How do I apply to West Valley College as an International Student?

Obtain an International Student Application from West Valley College by:

West Valley College
Attention: International Student Counselor/DSO
14000 Fruitvale Avenue
Saratoga, CA 95070-5698

What is required to apply as an International Student?

  • International Student Application, includes West Valley College application and $100 application fee. Please make check payable to West Valley College – must be in U.S. Dollars.
  • TOEFL minimum score of 61 ibt or STEP Eiken Pre-1 level or IELTS of 5.5. Waivers are available for students who have college level English completed or who qualify for English 1A.
  • Financial Statement totaling $23,000+ for one academic school year.
  • If in the United States when applying, you must be in legal “status” to apply or transfer, since West Valley College does NOT accept reinstatement students.
  • Transfer letter (if attending US school) with SEVIS release date sent to PDSO, Terry Eppley.
  • Copy of passport front page
  • Copies of I-94, I-20 and Visa page if currently attending school in the United States. DS-2019 required for J-1 visa applicants.
  • Health statement including TB clearance (included in application includes immunization record).
  • Application fee of $100 US Dollars and official transcripts from schools attended either in or outside the USA.

Who do I contact if I should have a question about the application?

Is there any other information that will help me with my application?

Other Resources for International Students

  • USCIS – United States Customs and Immigration Services (local office): 1450 Coleman Ave, Santa Clara, CA 95050  web site:
  • English as a Second Language (ESL) - West Valley College Chair – Sylvia Ortega (408) 741-2465, email: sylvia.ortegaFREEWEST_VALLEY
  • Web resource for ESL Department at West Valley College
  • Career Services at West Valley College (check out different major requirements)
  • IERF – Int’l Education Research Foun. – Foreign transcript evaluation towards Associates Degree. Phone: (310) 258-9451 Fax: (310) 342-7086 email: [email protected]
  • ECE – San Jose State University foreign transcript evaluations for transfer advising. Phone: (414) 289-3400 Fax: (414) 289-3411 email: [email protected]
  • Homestay: ISP - International Student Placements – Phone: (650) 947-8879 fax: (650) 969-9857 email: [email protected]

What is the current tuition and fees that International Student is required to pay?

The current tuition and fees as of Fall 2024 semester: $367 per unit (12 units minimum required for all F-1 visa holders), not including the $46 enrollment – all fees and tuition are required to be paid by F-1 and students changing their status to F-1 from any other visa status. Basic registration fees include:

  • Health Services fee: $42.00 per year
  • Associated Student Body Card: $28.00 per year
  • Campus Center fee: $30.00 per year
  • Web Registration: $6.00 per year
  • Representation Fee: $4.00 per year

How many units am I required to take as an International student?

12 units constitute full time "status" per Immigration requirements for undergraduate students in a Fall or Spring semester ONLY.

What if I want to take a class at West Valley but I hold an I-20 from another college

This is called “concurrent enrollment” and requires permission from your home school that issued your I-20. You need to fill out a West Valley College application, in the Admissions office (or online) and bring a letter of permission from your International Student Advisor from your college to the Admissions office. You will be  limited to take 6 semester units (or less) at West Valley College.

Your application does not need to be filed through the International Student Office, since this is only for students wishing to attend our college full time.

What do I do with a transcript from an International University?

Students planning to use transcripts towards a degree at West Valley College from a foreign country's university or college will need to have that transcript evaluated by a service.This evaluation counts only towards a West Valley College Associates Degree. If you plan to transfer, contact the transfer college or university to see what requirements are needed for foreign transcript evaluation. West Valley College only accepts evaluation services from the NACES list (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services). The NACES website may be found at National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES)

What Campus Services are NOT available to students attending West Valley college on F-1 student visas?

They include the following programs:

  • Financial Aid - Federal or State are only available to residents and citizens (limited scholarships are available to International Students once they attend West Valley College starting their second semester of full time attendance).
  • Work Study programs are only available to residents and citizens
  • EOPS - limited to residents and citizens of the United States only
  • TRiO - a federally funded program limited to residents and Citizens of the US only
Last Updated 4/15/24