How to Pay for UCLA

As a top-ranked public school, the University of California, Los Angeles (or UCLA) is a great bet for nearly any program of study and offers reduced tuition to residents of California. 

Regardless of your home state, be sure to investigate how to pay for UCLA, as your options will differ greatly depending on your degree. For example, many medical students will be granted a free medical education thanks to a generous donation from the school’s namesake; law and business graduate students aren’t quite as fortunate. Read on for more details on the costs and funding options for the major degree programs at UCLA.

How much does it cost to attend UCLA?

Given UCLA is part of the University of California state school system, your tuition expenses will vary greatly depending on whether or not you’re a resident of California. Undergraduates in the 2015-2016 school year paid $13,251 if they were residents, but $37,959 for non-resident tuition. With all expenses included, residents and non-residents paid a total of $33,898 and $58,606 for the year, respectively.

Anderson MBA students saw a smaller cost difference between in and out-of-state tuition. For the same school year, MBA tuition cost $50,516.52 for residents and $54,643.52 for non-residents. With about $30,000 in additional expenses, total costs were estimated to be $81,364 (resident) and $85,491(non-resident).

Aspiring physicians at the David Geffen School of Medicine pay a bit less than business students. Resident tuition in the 2015-2016 school year was $36,402, while non-resident tuition cost $48,647, for total costs of $65,860 and $78,105 depending on your residency status.

Law students at UCLA see about a $6,000 tuition difference depending on whether their home state is California. Residents paid $45,284.26 in tuition from 2015-2016, while nonresidents paid $51,778.26. With all other expenses included, the total cost for the year was estimated to be $68,452.26 for residents and $74,946.26 for non-residents.

What kind of financial aid does UCLA offer?

There are four UCLA scholarship programs for which undergraduates may be considered.

The UCLA Achievement Scholarship is awarded to students who demonstrate both financial need and academic excellence. The scholarship is offered for all four years of an undergraduate education, can range from $500 to $10,000 per year, and students must submit the FAFSA or DREAM Act application to be considered.

Student awarded the UCLA Regents Scholarship, which is granted regardless of financial need, are chosen based on “academic excellence, leadership, and exceptional promise.” The Regents Scholarship is one of the highest honors at UCLA, and up to 100 Scholars are selected per year from the top 1.5% of the entering class. All Scholars will receive a $2,000 honorarium regardless of financial need; those with further need will be eligible for the Regents Scholarship need-based award, which can supplement state and federal grant programs, as well as other scholarships.

The Chancellor’s Blue and Gold Scholarship Program is intended to increase enrollment at UCLA for students from local high schools and community colleges that traditionally send few students to UCLA. Awards are between $1,000 and $5,000 and may be renewed each year; scholars are also required to complete at least twenty hours of community service per year they are awarded this scholarship.

Undergraduates at UCLA will also be considered for a number of scholarships awarded by external organizations, but the Financial Aid and Scholarships office at UCLA will help select recipients.

MBA student at UCLA Anderson will be considered for a number of fellowships based on merit, selected career path, community involvement, or financial need. The Nozawa Fellowship is a bit more specific and gives preference to Japanese MBA students. Beyond fellowships, students should also consider teaching assistantships in their second year, as well as research outside funding options. For the remaining costs of business school, federal and private student loans are available.

Students pursuing a medical career at the David Geffen School of Medicine will be considered for a number of full-tuition merit-based scholarships. The David Geffen Medical Scholarship alone covers the entire cost of a medical education for up to 20% of students, so UCLA deserves serious consideration if you have a strong application and are looking to reduce (or, in many cases, eliminate) student debt.

Law students at UCLA have fewer options when it comes to scholarships, but not all is lost. Law Departmental Scholarships are awarded during the admissions process, and students are also encouraged to research external scholarships. Law students who demonstrate financial need may qualify for up to $21,000 per year through the Need Access Grant.

What kinds of extras should I expect to pay for at UCLA?

Most people will claim it’s impossible to live in Los Angeles without a car, so it’s safe to assume you’ll need to pay for gas, maintenance, insurance, parking, and a car payment if your car isn’t paid off. In addition, Greek life is popular among many students at UCLA, so budget a few thousand extra to cover these expenses if a fraternity or sorority is in your future.

If you’re from out of the state, getting home shouldn’t be all that difficult through the Los Angeles International Airport, but don’t forget about the cost of flights to and from home. Lastly, regardless of where you hail from, Los Angeles is a major metropolitan city with countless food, entertainment, and shopping options, so be sure to spend mindfully once you’re in the center of it all.

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