15 Best U.S. Universities for Chinese Students

If you’re preparing to study abroad, you’re probably drowning in the details of your trip. One detail you shouldn’t have to worry about, though, is finding a reputable university that will support your goals and advance your career without breaking the bank.

You’d probably also like to attend a school where you’ll be able to meet other Chinese international students – which is why we created this ranking.

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We’ve combined these crucial factors – academic quality, cost, and Chinese international student presence – to present you with a list of 15 qualified candidates to entrust with your higher education.

Our Methodology

The list below cross-references U.S. News and World Report’s 2018 "Top Universities for International Students" report (learn more about their methodology) with Lend.edu's ranking of over 1,000 schools by the average amount of financial aid awarded to international students.

Foreign Policy’s “Most Chinese Schools in America” ranking also helped us discover universities that are particularly Chinese-international-student friendly.

Finally, we did some digging to uncover which of the qualified universities offer unique programs and opportunities specifically for Chinese international students.

Without further ado, we present the 15 best U.S. universities for Chinese students!

1. Columbia University – New York City, NY

Overall Acceptance Rate: 6% (2017)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #5

Columbia University, whose campus occupies two full city blocks in upper Manhattan, offers scholarly seclusion amid the boisterous city. The research-intensive university is heavily geared toward graduate studies, with more than two times more graduate students than undergraduates.

Prepare to delve deeply into academics and pursue your passions in the 500+ clubs and organizations offered by the premier university.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 32,429 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 35% (2017)
  • Number of Chinese students – 4,921 (2017)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 15% (2017)
  • 5th most Chinese students among U.S. universities
  • Most Chinese students among Ivy League universities

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Contact the International Students and Scholars Office for more information.


2. Princeton University – Princeton, NJ

Overall Acceptance Rate: 6.4% (2017)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #1


Princeton’s gorgeous ivy-covered buildings in a quaint New Jersey town embody the traditional feel of an Ivy League school. While the university’s academic subjects excel across the board, its arts and humanities, social science, and natural science programs are particularly robust.

At Princeton, you’ll discover a vibrant community of scholarship, collaborative research, and a longstanding commitment to service.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 8,181 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 23% (2017)
  • Number of Chinese students – 549 (2017)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 7% (2017)
  • 7th most Chinese students among Ivy League universities

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Visit the Davis International Center for more information.


3. New York University (NYU) – New York City, NY

Overall Acceptance Rate: 19% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #30

Stationed in the heart of New York’s trendy downtown, NYU welcomes more international students than any other university in the U.S.

This bustling university boasts one of the world’s most dynamic environments for arts, culture, and entertainment. If you seek an academic experience “in and of the city,” as the university proudly states, then NYU may be the place for you.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 59,061 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 22% (2017)
  • Number of Chinese students – 6,517 (2016)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 11% (2016)
  • 11th most Chinese students among U.S. universities
  • Highest number of international students in the U.S. (17,326 in 2016)

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Visit the International Student Center for more information.


4. Johns Hopkins University – Baltimore, MD

Overall Acceptance Rate: 9.9% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #11

As America’s first research university, Johns Hopkins University prides itself in its research – after all, for the past 38 years, the university has put more funds into research than any other U.S. academic institution. Hopkins’ 27 Nobel Prize-winning researchers prove that this investment has been worthwhile.

While JHU is based in Baltimore, its presence reaches nearly every corner of the globe thanks to its campuses on three continents, students from over 120 countries, and researchers in every time zone.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 24,277 (2016)
  • Percentage of international students – 20% (2016)
  • Number and percentage of Chinese students – data not available
  • Get involved in the Chinese Students and Scholars Association, which was recently honored by the Chinese Ambassador as one of the top chapters in the country

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Visit the Office of International Services for more information. 


5. Cornell University – Ithaca, NY

Overall Acceptance Rate: 10.3% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #14


As the federal land-grant institution of New York State, Cornell is deeply committed to outreach and public service, reinforcing its identity statement, “private university, public mission.” The university passionately contributes to all fields of knowledge, with the mission of improving public quality of life.

While Cornell is well-known for its rigorous academics, don’t forget to take a break from the books to soak in the natural beauty of the lake, waterfalls, and gardens surrounding Cornell’s upstate New York campus.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 23,016 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 22% (2017)
  • Number of Chinese students – 2,123 (2017)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 9% (2017)
  • 2nd most Chinese students among Ivy League universities

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Visit the International Services Office of Global Learning for more information.


6. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) – Cambridge, MA

Overall Acceptance Rate: 7% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #5
 

A self-described body of “fun and quirky, elite but not elitist, and number-obsessed” scholars, MIT is home to some of the world’s most innovative engineers and creative minds. This makeup isn’t surprising for a university with the motto, “mens et manus,” meaning “mind and hand,” which signifies the fusion of academic knowledge with practical purpose.

While the university prides itself in being “profoundly American,” as it was founded to accelerate the nation’s industrial revolution, it enthusiastically welcomes talent from around the world. In fact, 30% of MIT students come from outside the United States.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 11,466 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 30% (2017)
  • Number of Chinese students – 947 (2017)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 8% (2017)

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Visit the International Students Office for more information.


7. University of Illinois – Champaign, IL

Overall Acceptance Rate: 66% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #52

This Midwestern university greets the most Chinese students of all U.S. universities – 5,845 as of the 2017-2018 academic year, to be exact. The University of Illinois firmly believes that creating strong international ties is essential to excellence and offers extensive resources for students from around the world.

The innovative university has earned a reputation as a nationally-renowned center for performing arts and a world leader in research. If rigorous sciences and the arts aren’t enough to keep you occupied, the 13-million-volume library – one of the largest public university collections in the world – is sure to entertain you.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 47,826 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 23% (2017)
  • Number of Chinese students – 5,845 (2017)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 12% (2017)
  • Most Chinese students among U.S. universities (5,845 in 2017)

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

  • Average financial aid awarded to international students – $13,371 (2016)
  • Out-of-state tuition – $29,480 (2018)

Visit the International Student & Scholar Services for more information.


8. Yale University – New Haven, CT

Overall Acceptance Rate: 6.3% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #3

Since its founding over 300 years ago, Yale has sought to expand and share knowledge and have an effective reach both locally and internationally. This elite university nurtures a spirit of inquiry in students with the goal of preparing “global citizens who are instilled with a life-long love of learning.”

Full of rich history and traditions, this coastal university is a close-knit and fascinating place to study.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 12,458 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 20% international students
  • Number of Chinese students – 786 (2017)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 6% (2017)
  • 5th most Chinese students among Ivy League universities

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Visit the Office of International Students & Scholars for more information.


9. Purdue University– West Lafayette, IN

Overall Acceptance Rate: 56% (2017)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #56

If you’re in search of a world-renowned education without the price tag of many top universities, look no further than Purdue. As one of the "best colleges for your money" in the country, Purdue delivers on its promise of providing an excellent education at the highest proven value.

The public research university attracts hordes of in-state, out-of-state, and international students. Although best known for its outstanding engineering programs, Purdue also boasts the first university-owned airport, 23 astronaut alumni – including Gus Grissom and Neil Armstrong – state-of-the-art research facilities, and top-tier graduate programs in education and business.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 41,573 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 21.9% (2017)
  • Number of Chinese students – 3,696 (2017)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 9% (2017)
  • 3rd most Chinese students among U.S. universities
  • Ranks #5 on Wall Street Journal’s 2017 “Best Public Colleges in the U.S.” report

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

  • Average financial aid awarded to international students – $2,097 (2016)
  • Out-of-state tuition – $31,084 (2018)

Visit the Office of International Students & Scholars for more information.


10. University of Notre Dame – Notre Dame, IN

Overall Acceptance Rate: 18% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #18

Notre Dame’s unique commitment to both faith and science, tradition and innovation, and value and fact distinguish this university from others. The Catholic university, home to historic Gothic architecture, exquisite sculptures, and a breathtaking landscape, is one of the few universities to repeatedly earn a top-25 ranking on U.S. News and World Report’s yearly report of America’s best colleges.

Explore Notre Dame and you’ll discover a tradition of excellence in every arena – academics, athletics, and the arts.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 12,929 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 7% (2017)
  • Number and percentage of Chinese students – data unavailable

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Visit the Office of International Student and Scholar Affairs for more information.


11. University of Southern California (USC) – Los Angeles, CA

Overall Acceptance Rate: 13% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #21 (tie)

USC’s University Park campus, located in the heart of Los Angeles, provides ample opportunity for interdisciplinary study and collaboration in technology, the arts, and international business.

USC treasures its diverse community. In fact, the university ranked second among the top 25 U.S. universities for student and faculty diversity. You’ll want to dive right into the abundant opportunities available to students of all backgrounds on USC’s campus – including religious groups, dance teams, and fashion clubs, to name a few.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 45,500 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 25% (2017)
  • Number of Chinese students – 5,447 (2017)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 12% (2017)
  • 2nd most Chinese students among U.S. universities

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

  • Average financial aid awarded to international students – $17,744 (2016)
  • Out-of-state tuition – $55,320 (2018)

Visit the Office of International Services for more information.


12. University of Pennsylvania – Philadelphia, PA

Overall Acceptance Rate: 8.4% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #8

University of Pennsylvania President Amy Gutmann began her position with a far-reaching vision: to make Penn the most inclusive, innovative, and impactful university in the nation. This threefold strategy includes a push to attract international students to enrich their academic careers – and you can be a part of it.

Discover how the history and tradition of Penn, as seen in its stately buildings, intersects with innovation and creativity in its state-of-the-art facilities.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 25,367 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 20% (2017)
  • Percentage of Chinese students – 7% (2017)
  • 12th most Chinese students among U.S. universities
  • 3rd most Chinese students among Ivy League universities

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Visit the Office of International Student & Scholar Services for more information.


13. University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) – Los Angeles, CA

Overall Acceptance Rate: 14.1% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #21 (tie)

UCLA accredits its 14 Nobel Prizes, 13 faculty MacArthur fellows, 116 NCAA titles, and 261 Olympic medals to one powerful catalyst – optimism.

As a student at UCLA, you’ll take part in this resilient culture of optimism. You’ll push boundaries, reject the status quo, and pursue achievement. Join the developers of the Internet and the pioneers of reverse osmosis and discover how you can be a part of making the impossible possible.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 44,947 (2018)
  • Percentage of international students – 12% (2017)
  • Number and percentage of Chinese students – data unavailable
  • 8th most Chinese students among U.S. universities

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

  • Average financial aid awarded to international students – $3,601 (2016)
  • Out-of-state tuition - $42,277 (2018)

Visit the Dashew Center for International Students & Scholars for more information.


14. Vanderbilt University – Nashville, TN

Overall Acceptance Rate: 10.9% (2017)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #14

An abundance of possibilities characterizes Vanderbilt. From over 200 live music halls around Nashville to the 430 student organizations on campus, you’ll have plenty to keep you busy.

You’ll want to work hard and play hard at Vanderbilt. Get ready to immerse yourself in your studies in a variety of disciplines – from humanities to music to engineering – and experience the culture of Nashville in your free time. Enjoy concert headliners from all musical genres, watch Broadway shows, and savor the delicious flavors of famous diners like the Loveless Café.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 12,592 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 11% (2017)
  • Number and percentage of Chinese students – data unavailable
  • Contact a Vanderbilt student from Mainland China to help you connect with the Vanderbilt community.

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

Visit the Office of International Student & Scholar Services for more information.


15. The University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, MI

Overall Acceptance Rate: 23.5% (2018)
U.S. News and World Report Ranking: #28

Learn alongside accomplished faculty, staff, and students from around the world – all amid Ann Arbor’s lively arts scene, quaint parks, and delicious restaurants.

The University of Michigan prides itself on its breadth and depth of talent, resources, and community impact. From consulting clubs to Relay for Life teams, you’ll find hundreds of opportunities to gain leadership experience, make new friends, and serve the community.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total university enrollment – 46,002 (2017)
  • Percentage of international students – 7% (2017)
  • Number and percentage of Chinese students – data unavailable
  • 16th most Chinese students among U.S. universities
  • Learn about UMich’s Confucius Institute

Tuition and Financial Aid Statistics

  • Average financial aid awarded to international students – limited scholarship funding available
  • Out-of-state tuition - $49,350 (2018)

Visit the International Center for more information.


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