International Students at UChicago

December 11, 2022
By AdmissionSight

International Students at UChicago

Over 100 nations are represented among the pool of international students at UChicago. They contribute significantly to the diversity of the UChicago community and offer a vital context for all types of campus discussions.

How does an international student get into UChicago? An international applicant will apply in the same way that all first-year applicants do. Regardless of your citizenship, your application will be evaluated in the context of the high school you attended. No matter where in the world you reside or where you attended school, the University of Chicago will classify you as an international applicant for financial aid purposes if you are not a citizen nor a permanent resident of the United States.

All first-year students, including QuestBridge, home-schooled, and veteran applicants, must provide the requirements listed below.

Application Requirements

  1. Students must submit all necessary information when applying using either the Coalition Application or the Common Application.
  • A personal statement, demographic data, and extracurricular activities are all included in the application.
  • Students must submit the UChicago Supplemental Essays for either application.
  1. There is a $75 application fee but a student can be exempted through the Automatic Fee Waiver program.
  2. In addition to the Secondary School Report, school counselors should provide the student’s transcript.
  3. Two letters of recommendation are required from teachers who instructed the student in core academic subjects.
  4. SAT and ACT scores are optional.
  5. School counselors should submit the student’s mid-year report.

Other Optional Components

Recommended Video Profile

You have the choice to submit a two-minute video introduction in place of the conventional college interview if you would want to add your voice to your application. The video does not need to be edited, nor do you need to extensively practice or polish your recording.

Using the platform of your choice, you can create your video introduction, which you can then upload as a file or a link to your UChicago Account. Please include any pertinent information about your application that you were unable to state elsewhere in your UChicago application.

Supplementary Materials

Students may post supplemental materials using their UChicago Account that demonstrate a noteworthy talent, passion, or accomplishment. Creative writing samples, performance samples from the performing arts (music, dance, visual art, theater), research papers, business proposals, school capstone projects like AP Capstone or similar projects, and other noteworthy pieces are just a few examples of the items that can be used.

a female student sitting and appears to be thinking

Additionally, students have the option to self-report their scores for AP examinations, SAT-II subject tests, predicted IB scores, and A-Level results.

Schoolhouse.world Statistics or Calculus Mastery Certification

The schoolhouse.world certification can be added by students to their application. You can download a PDF document proving your completion once you have finished a specific subject area. This PDF can be added to your UChicago Account.

English Proficiency Tests

Only applicants with a high level of English language proficiency are admitted to the University of Chicago. Students are encouraged to submit results from any English proficiency test they feel accurately reflects their level of proficiency in the language.

Unidentified person answering a test.

You are not obliged to provide official exam results if you believe that your application adequately demonstrates your command of the English language. Students who opt to submit their English proficiency results may do so using either self-reported or official results. Students who self-report their scores will not be obliged to turn in official score reports until they are accepted and decide to enroll, at which point they will.

There is no ESL program available for international students at UChicago.

What Percentage Of UChicago Students Are International?

What percentage of UChicago students are international? International students at UChicago comprise 15% of students from the College and 24% of the University community. These academically talented and intellectually curious students come from over 100 countries in the world.

For the Class of 2026, about 16% are international students who represent 68 different nations. Out of the 2,041 accepted students, there were 1,729 who chose to enroll as first-year students at UChicago.

Do International Students Get Financial Aid At UChicago?

Do international students get financial aid at UChicago? Over the past four years, the school has provided nearly $20 million in need-based financial aid to international students at UChicago, and a recent gift of $35 million for international financial aid that has strengthened the University’s commitment to enrolling a multicultural and talented student body from all over the world.

When applying for admission to UChicago, international students must submit a financial aid application. International students are not eligible for financial aid after receiving their admissions decision or for the duration of their four years at the College unless they request financial aid during the admissions process.

unidentified man wearing a suit and carrying a graduation hat

UChicago is committed to providing a loan-free financial aid award that fully satisfies your demonstrated need. The school’s financial assistance awards are based on an estimation of the total cost of attendance, which includes tuition, housing, health insurance, a meal plan, and estimates for other expenses like books and personal charges.

If you have any queries about international financial aid, please get in touch with the college admissions team. The Office of College Admissions, not the Office of Financial Aid, assesses all applications for international financial aid.

Requirements for Financial Aid

The International Financial Aid Worksheet (available in the UChicago Account)

The International Student Financial Aid Worksheet must be completed and submitted through the UChicago Account. This form is only available for non-US citizens and non-US permanent residents for financial aid application at UChicago.

Supporting Documentation

You will be required to upload additional proof of your family’s income and assets, such as tax returns, employer statements, bank statements, or other types of proof. Once the International Financial Aid Worksheet has been filed, students can submit these supplementary materials online through their UChicago Account, along with any justification for exceptional circumstances. Select “Foreign Aid Application Supporting Docs” from the drop-down box under the Upload Materials section.

Please note that candidates for international aid do not need to submit the CSS Profile or the FAFSA, and they do not need to submit the Certification of Finances form along with their financial aid application.

Merit Scholarships for International Students at UChicago

The school provides merit scholarships to international applicants to acknowledge candidates for their exceptional academic and extracurricular accomplishments, demonstrated leadership, and dedication to their communities. Merit scholarships are partial-tuition awards that can be given as an annual grant that is renewable or as a single lump sum.

If a candidate believes they may need financial assistance to pay for their college education, they must apply for need-based financial aid because merit scholarships are evaluated independently of a candidate’s financial condition. However, candidates should not rely solely on merit scholarships to pay for their undergraduate education because most of the financial aid at UChicago is distributed in the form of need-based aid.

Students listening intently in a classroom.

For all first-year applicants, no additional application is necessary. They are automatically considered for merit scholarships. On the other hand, merit-based scholarships are not offered to international transfer students. By the end of April, recipients of scholarships will be notified on a rolling basis of their awards. Please be aware that notification will only be sent to merit scholarship winners.

International Transfer Applicants

International transfer applicants are not eligible for financial aid; thus, they must demonstrate that they can completely fund their education at UChicago.

Is UChicago Good For International Students?

A culture of inquiry, conversation, and exploration characterizes the undergraduate college experience at the University of Chicago. International students at UChicago contribute to the conversational frameworks in the community with a variety of experiences and viewpoints they have.  UChicago is seeking academically gifted and intellectually inquisitive international students who want to study on a renowned campus in a global city to impart their ideas to discussions in the community.

Is UChicago good for international students? Since 1890, the University of Chicago has drawn some of the most brilliant minds from around the globe. The distinctive and dynamic community at UChicago is greatly influenced by its existing international students and the contributions they give to the international student population.

A group of current UChicago undergraduate students from all over the world called the International Student Advisory Committee (commonly known as ISAC) is eager to assist you in learning more about the UChicago undergraduate experience. Feel free to ask a student if you have any questions regarding being an international student at UChicago, from the Core curriculum to the weather. They are here to share their unique knowledge of the College with you.

Getting Used to America

Every student has a lot of adjustments to make as they start their first few months at college. International students simply have a different set of adjustments to make. The University of Chicago offers staff members who are dedicated to easing the transition. These adjustments may involve everything about housing, academics, and culture.

Housing:  The international students at UChicago have a strong support network from the minute they arrive on campus. The community of students in college housing is amazing, diverse, and supportive of one another.  UChicago’s Resident Assistants, Heads, and Deans are constantly accessible to help students adjust to college life.

Academics: There are many resources available to assist students to excel in their studies, even if it could take some time to get used to the Socratic-style debates and high degree of rigor in UChicago’s courses. Many students get a head start on their studies by enrolling in core classes, which explain many of the research techniques they will use while attending UChicago and are supported by the entire Harper Core Tutor team.

Academic advisors help students find the most relevant and engaging courses by guiding them through the course selection process. Every professor has office hours; they are approachable and some of them even bring puppies into their offices.

Culture: Unbelievably, after a few weeks, saying “have a good one” starts to feel normal. International students will find a wide variety of Recognized Student Organizations (RSO) at UChicago that are great resources for those who are looking for people to chat with someone from home, get some advice from upperclassmen who might have a few more American terms in their vocabulary, or plan a visit to a nearby restaurant serving more familiar food.

Employment for International Students

Any F1/J1 student may work on campus in jobs that are directly compensated by the University or its affiliates. When students secure a position through lab openings/postings or the career portal on Handshake, UChicago’s online career platform, they are also onboarded to work in the United States. Moreover, the offices assist students in applying for a Social Security Number and other things needed once they have a job.

Students talking in front of a building.

Visiting Home

Some international students return home for their annual long breaks (winter and summer), while others can decide to stay in Chicago or travel to see family and friends around the country. If they prefer to stay on campus during breaks, international students can do so. For those who decide to stay, on-campus Houses and Resident Heads regularly arrange enjoyable holiday events.

Orientation for International Students

Before the College’s official orientation week, international students at UChicago can meet with other international students through the opt-in program known as international pre-orientation. International students have the chance to learn more about the Chicago metropolitan region and set up local phone service, a bank account, and other necessities.

Liberal Arts

The core curriculum at UChicago is unmatched in its richness and scope. Students at UChicago are exposed to almost all subjects (except for physical education), which enables them to approach their own interests through a variety of lenses that have been established through learning other Core subjects.

Choosing a Major

Students at UChicago have plenty of options when it comes to focusing on a field of study, thanks to the school’s liberal arts approach to education. During their first few quarters of school, most students take Core subjects and dabble in their areas of interest. The last quarter of their third year is when students are required to choose their majors.

Health Insurance

The University offers several health insurance plans to enrolled students, which makes the process quite simple. Additionally, students have access to the Student Health Services at the University of Chicago, which offers a wide range of care options that should cover most students’ needs.

Office of International Affairs (OIA

The Office of International Affairs (OIA) is committed to encouraging cross-cultural understanding and enhancing a thriving global society. OIA works with current students on maintaining course load requirements and valid documentation, traveling, job and work authorization, and more. It can help admitted students with their visa applications and help them get to the United States.

International House

The mission of International House is to give students from other countries and cultures the chance to live and learn together in a setting of respect, tolerance, and global friendship. International House promotes diversity of thought and experience and enables students from around the world to exchange their discoveries, approaches, and points of view through initiatives like the Global Voices Performing Arts and Lecture Series, the Global Mentorship Network, and numerous fellowships and internships.

These are just some of the organizations and benefits that international students at UChicago can utilize and enjoy. The University of Chicago is known for its solid reputation, including its most renowned academic programs, organizations, athletic programs, and a lot more. If you would like to know more about this prestigious university and its admissions process, AdmissionSight has it all covered.

Being in the college admissions counseling industry for more than 10 years, AdmissionSight can assist you in every component and step of your college application. Feel free to book an initial consultation with our experts today.

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