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Peralta Community College District

United States


The Peralta Community College District (PCCD) is made up of four colleges in the state of California, USA. Berkeley City College, College of Alameda, Laney College and Merritt College all offer a variety of different programmes for those who choose to study in the district.

PCCD offers community college programmes that are transferrable to four-year degree programmes at universities such as Harvard, University of California, Los Angeles and University of California, Berkley. It also provides more than 80 different Career and Technical Education courses, which provide dedicated training and direct support for students who are looking to move straight into a career.

Across the four colleges, there are over 30,000 students from more than 90 different countries around the world. There are also a variety of fun student activities ran by the institution each semester, including camping trips to the world-famous Yosemite National Park, international welcome dinners, and much more. These give students a brilliant opportunity to settle into their college, meet new friends and make California a real home away from home.

PCCD prides itself on being able to provide a brilliant, hands-on education to a wide variety of groups. The cost of tuition is less than that of a traditional USA university, and it offers financial aid to over 60% of its students.

There are a number of health services available across the colleges, including a Student Wellness Committee, mental health support and Crisis Support Services. There is also help for students with finding accommodation, support for obtaining a visa, and even a counselling service on offer at PCCD.

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What's new

What's new

The International Student Book Card Scholarship awards USD 500 twice a year, intended for F1 international students to purchase book and school supplies.

The following are the excerpts from the experiences shared by two of the winners from Laney College:

Sophie Camara Senegal, West Africa

''I am currently studying Humanities, Liberal Arts and Entrepreneurship. I plan to pursue a career in Consulting upon transferring to a 4 years University in the fall 2018. After graduating with a Bachelor's Degree, I plan to pursue my higher education with a Master's Degree and a PhD. By awarding me International Student Book Card Scholarship, the College has lightened my financial burden which allows me to focus more on the most important aspect of school, learning.

The financial assistance will be of great help in paying my educational expenses. I can afford to pay for my books and school supplies, which will allow me to work more efficiently and release me from the financial dilemma I often have between paying for my health treatment (as I have Sickle Cell Anemia and hypothyroid disease) or using my savings for my urgent college expenses.''

Quynh Nguyen Vietnam

''Laney College has provided a great environment for studying with lots of support. The professors are very friendly and helpful in explaining the lesson's material. There is tutoring centre and many events help me overcome study and language difficulties. I applied for this bookcard to get the books and other school supplies that are related to my subject.''

Read more about the International student scholarship winners of Spring 2018 here...

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Peralta Community College District consists of four colleges.

Berkeley City College

Berkeley City College (BCC) is a premier, diverse, student-centred learning community dedicated to academic excellence, collaboration, innovation and transformation.

Students will develop the knowledge and skills they need to transfer to top-rated universities or find a well-paid job in their field of study. BCC students experience some of the state's highest transfer rates to San Francisco State University, California State University East Bay and many other public and private institutions.

College of Alameda

College of Alameda (CoA) takes pride in being a community college with outstanding academics and exceptional support programmes. College of Alameda is a good option if students are unemployed or under-employed and want to work in Apparel Design and Merchandising, Business/Accounting/Office Administration, Computer Information Systems, Dental Assisting, or Transportation Technology.

Merritt College

The College offers students experienced, knowledgeable, and student-centred instructional and counselling faculty as well as caring and nurturing staff and administrators. In addition, there is an array of classes, programmes, certificates, and degrees to pursue such as Child Development, Horticulture, Genomics, Microscopy, Fire Science, Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Radiologic Technology, Nursing, Medical Assisting, and more.

Laney College

Laney College draws students from the Greater Bay Area because of its reputation for diversity and high quality technical training.

The College has preserved and continuously updated a remarkable set of career and technical (CTE) programmes, which includes traditional trade areas like Electrical Technology (state certified), Welding, Industrial Maintenance, Machining, and Carpentry.

Laney College is a national leader in sustainability education. Energy efficiency and related sustainability-themed courses can be found in many different departments.

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Study options

Study options

The Community College offers various programmes, including:


The Business Department at Berkeley City College offers transfer programmes and non-transfer occupational programmes leading to Associate Degrees and Certificates in several business areas.

Communication Studies

The Associate in Arts in Communication for transfer degree at BCC is designed to prepare students to complete the baccalaureate degree in communication upon transferring into the CSU system. Through the study and practice of interpersonal, professional, and intercultural communication skills, students will learn how their perceptions and self-esteem affect their interactions with others.

Computer Information Systems

BCC's Computer Information Systems programmes provide courses to improve students' computer and software knowledge and skills. The CIS Associate in Science degrees enables students to develop and/or upgrade their skills for career advancement. The Certificate of Achievement programmes qualify them for entry-level employment in occupational settings that utilise computers and various software applications.


The College of Alameda's Department of Mathematics offers a variety of courses intended for those who want to pursue a degree or certificate in mathematics as well as those who wish to develop quantitative and problem-solving skills for use in other fields.

Natural sciences

To earn an Associate of Science in Natural Sciences at the Merritt College, students are required to take a variety of science classes that will give them a well-rounded background in the sciences leading to transfer to a four-year college and a variety of careers.


Laney College offers the lower division engineering major preparation courses as well as the science and mathematics courses required for transfer in good standing to colleges and universities across California and the U.S.

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How to apply

How to apply

All new students must obtain a Peralta student ID and then submit their international student application.

Step 1: Obtain a Peralta student ID

To obtain Peralta student IDs, students must select their home campus from one of the four colleges, and

create an account.

Step 2: Set up the Peralta email account

Check for an email from the Peralta Admissions & Records Office, with the subject line: ''Student Passport Information'' within 24 hours of submitting their application. They then need to locate their Peralta email address and password within the admissions email.

Step 3: Submit a Peralta International student application

Check the Peralta email for login instructions to the International student application from globaled.

Once logged in, select an application: Overseas, for new students outside the U.S.

Select ‘Apply Now' and follow the steps to submit a Peralta International Student Application.


All documents can be uploaded to the new digital application with the exception of application fees paid by check. All documents must be translated into English. The following is a checklist for the international students' application:

  • USD 50 application fee
  • Credit card payment form
  • Make check/money order payable to ''Peralta Community College District''
  • Bank statement (minimum USD 20,722 if students are applying for Fall semester 2017)
  • High School/Secondary School Diploma (from High School or secondary school)
  • Official transcripts
  • Medical examination
  • Passport bio page
  • Personal essay
  • Optional: TOEFL, IELTS, or iTEP scores

Read more here...

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Study abroad

Study abroad

Why study abroad?

  • Improves student learning by integrating knowledge with real life experiences
  • Creates a lasting learning experience for everyone
  • Promotes the Colleges and their programmes on a global level
  • Students and faculty develop a greater appreciation for other cultures and become more globally aware

Whether the students are interested in academic study, internship or service-learning opportunities abroad, there are financial resources to support their academic, professional and personal development through study abroad programmes.

Peralta Community College District is a Commitment Partner of IIE's Generation Study Abroad initiative and, as such, its students qualify for the IIE Generation Study Abroad Travel Grants. This means the students could be eligible to receive USD 2,000 to support their study abroad travel costs.

Prior to departure, each student will need to complete the following items:

  • Complete online pre-travel information form (Includes students personal information, emergency contact info, demographics data and a student code of conduct agreement)
  • Purchase travel insurance
  • Sign Assumption of Risk/Waiver forms
  • Enrol into the PCCD course associated with the trip
  • Attend mandatory pre-departure orientations
  • Make payments by deadlines as listed on programme information
  • Obtain proper immunisations as listed on the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention website
  • Register with the U.S. Department of State's Smart Traveller Enrolment Programme (STEP)
  • Read the Pre-departure Handbook

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The scholarships offered to international students by the College are:

International Scholarship

This is a USD 500 scholarship awarded twice a year, once in the spring and again in the fall.

International Student Book Card Scholarship

This is a USD 500 scholarship awarded twice a year, once in the spring and again in the fall. This scholarship is intended for a F1 International Student to purchase book and school supplies. This scholarship will be awarded in Follett Bookstore gift cards.

Study Abroad Scholarship

The Office of International Education at Peralta Community College District is committed to supporting students who wish to study abroad. This USD 500 scholarship is intended for students in need of financial assistance to study abroad for a life-changing experience.

Wanda Garcia Memorial Scholarship - International Student

This is a USD 500 scholarship awarded once a year in the Spring. This scholarship is intended to be awarded to an international student currently enrolled at Laney College in any major.

Read more here...

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Average cost of living in United States

View full cost of living
At Peralta
At Peralta
Join us at Laney, Peralta
Join us at Laney, Peralta
Join us at Laney, Peralta

Total average cost: $1767

  • $816
  • $677
  • $98
    Daily life
  • $176
Calculate your cost of living

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