Choosing a College or University

Community Colleges

There are many great options when it comes to community colleges in the Sacramento area. Community colleges are an inexpensive way to earn a degree or certificate.

The Los Rios Community College District consist of 4 colleges:

Another option in the area is Sierra College. The Rocklin campus offers on-campus housing.

California State University (CSU)

The CSU system consists of 23 campuses throughout the state. To be eligible for CSUs you must complete specific classes usually referred to as A-G classes. You must earn a C or better in each of those classes. Also, you must take either the SAT or the ACT. Keep in mind that some campuses/programs are impacted which means that they receive more applications then they can accommodate. This results in additional requirements for the school/program.

Visit California State University to learn more about the requirements, specific campuses or programs.

University of California

The UC system consists of 10 campuses (1 campus is not open to undergraduates). To be eligible for UCs you must complete specific classes (A-G), earn a grade point average of a 3.0 or better, and take the SAT with essay or the ACT plus writing by December of your senior year.

Visit the University of California – Admissions to learn more about the requirements, specific campuses or programs.

Private College and University

Private colleges and universities are all over the country. They are generally more expensive than the public school systems but don’t let that scare you. They have a lot of money to give as financial aid (institutional grants and scholarships). They also have different requirements than the CSUs and UCs so even if you are not eligible to apply to one of those, you may still be eligible to apply to a private institution.

You can use the Common Application to apply to multiple institutions with a single application. Currently, more than 700 colleges and universities accept the Common App. Check out the list of campuses on The Common App.

To explore private colleges and universities in California, visit Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities.

Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU)

Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are located all over the country. They were established to primarily serve African American students but have always allowed admission to students of all races/ethnicities. There are 107 campuses including 2 year and 4 year, public and private institutions. Admission requirements for each campus vary so make sure you look at the specific school you are interested in to see if you are eligible.

Visit for a list of unique Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).