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Tuition, Fees & Scholarships

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Sonoma State University (SSU) require that international applicants demonstrate proof of financial support to meet all university and living expenses for one academic year before a Form I-20 or DS-2019 can be issued for the F-1 or J-1 visa. It is recommended that original financial documents are brought to the visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consular Office.

Undergraduate and graduate students can see a breakdown of SSU tuition and fees on the Financial Affidavit for International Students. Remember that international students in F-1 status are required to pay the nonresident tuition fee of $396 per unit in addition to the state tuition and campus-based fees.

View the Academic Calendar for payment deadlines. Email Seawolf Services at if you have any questions about payments.

If you are interested in any of the graduate degree programs offered through the School of Extended and International Education (e.g. Executive MBAMA in Organization DevelopmentMA in Depth PsychologyMA in SpanishMS in Computer and Engineering Science), there is a different tuition and fee structure. View your specific program’s website for a breakdown of the tuition and fees affiliated with that program.

Because of the exchange agreement between your home institution and the California State University (CSU), you will be paying your home institution tuition and fees, while your SSU tuition fees will be waived.

You are still responsible for paying the campus-based fees. You can see a breakdown of these fees on the Office of the Registrar's website. These fees are due by July 1st for the fall semester and January 1st for the spring semester. You can pay these fees online through MySSU.

Because tuition waivers will not be placed on your account until several weeks after your arrival, your housing charges must be paid in-person at Seawolf Services so that you can ensure that your housing payments are not applied to your tuition charges.

You can email Seawolf Services at if you have any questions about payments. Be sure to identify yourself as an international exchange student.

Your tuition and fees are listed on the Semester at Sonoma program website. You may pay these fees online through MySSU, or upon your arrival at SSU during orientation. You must pay these fees before classes start.

Eligible non-resident domestic and international students in state-funded programs may apply for a waiver for a portion of their Non-Resident Tuition Fees. The number of available units that can be waived per semester is based on the number of requests and available funding. Please note that there is no guarantee that applicants will be awarded full/partial waivers. 

The following categories of students may be eligible for this waiver:

  1. International students in exchange programs
  2. Domestic students in exchange programs
  3. Matriculated degree-seeking undergraduate and graduate non-resident citizens of foreign countries
  4. Matriculated degree-seeking graduate domestic non-resident students

If you are a student under category 2, 3, or 4, you must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Provide evidence of financial need
  • Be in excellent academic standing: minimum 3.0 GPA and letter of academic recommendation
  • Be enrolled in at least 12 units if you are an undergraduate or 9 units if you are a graduate student 
  • Have attended Sonoma State University for at least one semester

To apply for this waiver, please complete the Non-Resident Tuition Fee Waiver Application form and submit all supporting documentation to the Global Engagement Office, International Hall 107, attention Katie O'Brien.

How to Apply

Step 1: Complete/collect all application materials

  • Complete the Non-Resident Tuition Fee Waiver Application form
    • Note that this form must be signed by your Academic Advisor, Major Professor or Department  Chair
  • Write a one-page letter to the committee addressing why you are requesting the fee waiver
  • Collect a letter of recommendation from your Academic Advisor, Major Processor or Department Chair
  • Collect documents which show financial need (bank statements, letters from officials etc.)
  • Download a copy of your unofficial transcript

Step 2: Submit all application documents to or drop them off at the Global Engagment Office, International Hall               107.

The deadline to apply for this waiver is June 1st for the Fall semester and November 15th for the Spring semester.

Applicants will be notified as soon as the committee has finished reviewing all submissions for that particular semester. If it is decided you'll be awarded an specific number of non-resident tuition fee units waived, a letter will be provided to Seawolf Services with the award information. 


Scholarships & Financial Aid


International Student Scholarship

Sonoma State University is thrilled to offer up to $5,000 in scholarship awards for new, incoming international students!

As an international applicant applying for a bachelors or graduate degree program at Sonoma State University, the scholarship process is simply and strightforward. All international applicants offered admission with a 3.0 GPA or higher will receive an automatic scholarship award to help reduce the cost of tuition in your first year. The higher your GPA, the more money you will get!

  1. The International Student President Award: $5,000 for F-1 visa, degree students admitted with a GPA of 3.60 and above.
  2. The International Student Provost Award: $3,000 for F-1 visa, degree students admitted with a GPA of 3.26 - 3.59 and above.
  3. The International Student Merit Scholarship: $2,000 for F-1 visa, degree students admitted with a GPA of 3.0 - 3.25 and above.

Sonoma State University General Scholarship

Full-time degree-seeking international students are eligible to apply for university scholarships which are offered on an annual basis. For more information about this opportunity, please visit the website of the SSU Scholarship Office.

The International Education Exchange Council (our student club) offers a small scholarship to international student members who actively participate in club activities. For more information, check out the SSU Student Involvement website or email

There are thousands of study abroad scholarships available to international students from organizations outside of SSU, like the Study California Scholarship. You can find many of these resources using a basic internet search, or by using one of these search engines:

Financial Aid

International students on F-1 or J-1 visas are not eligible for U.S. federal or state financial aid.