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As a Nigerian student considering studying abroad, the United States is one of the attractive destinations, but the financial aspect can pose a considerable challenge. Undergraduate studies in the USA can be expensive, with an average cost of $99,440. However, costs vary depending on the institution type, with public institutions averaging approximately $18,383, private non-profit institutions at $47,419, and private for-profit institutions at $27,040.

However, private non-profit universities tend to be the most expensive. For Nigerian students seeking affordable options, public state universities emerge as the most viable choice. It is crucial to prioritize applying to schools within your financial means to avoid the risk of dropping out midway through your academic journey. In this post, we’ll explore a curated list of the most affordable universities in the USA for Nigerian students.

Why Study in the USA as a Nigerian

  • Exceptional Education: Top-tier universities in the USA offer quality education and research opportunities, enhancing global career prospects.
  • Diverse Academic Offerings: Universities in the USA offer a variety of academic programs, from traditional to specialized fields, catering to different interests and career goals.
  • Abundant Career Paths: The USA boasts a strong economy with plentiful opportunities across sectors, allowing graduates from their institutions to pursue various career paths worldwide.
  • Cultural Immersion: Studying in the USA exposes students to American culture, fostering personal growth and appreciation for diverse perspectives.
  • Networking Advantages: USA universities offer extensive networking opportunities through interactions with professionals and peers, laying the groundwork for future career success.
  • Scholarship Support: Many US universities offer scholarships to international students, including Nigerians, easing the financial burden of studying abroad and increasing accessibility to higher education.

Affordable Universities In the USA for Nigerians

Nicholls State University

News & World Report College Rankings as one of the fifteen most affordable institutions for international students for the 2022-2023 academic year. The data indicates that among the 544 ranked colleges that enrolled at least 25 international students, only 15 have annual total costs below $24,600.

Furthermore, the total costs at Nicholls State University will vary depending on some educational level, the number of courses taken, and personal living expenses. With the minimum credit hours required by US immigration regulations, the Office of International Student Services provides a cost estimate based on full-time attendance. Full-time attendance for undergraduate students is 12 credit hours per semester, whereas full-time attendance for graduate students is nine (9) credit hours per semester.

The estimated cost of attendance per year, covering both the fall and spring semesters, is broken down as follows:

  • The estimated cost of tuition and fees ranges from $4,650 to $9,300 per semester or $9,300 to $18,600 per year.
  • Books, Health Insurance, Supplies, and Personal Expenses: This category is $1,750 per semester, totalling $3,500 annually.

Combining these expenses, the total estimate for the cost of attendance at Nicholls State University per year ranges from $10,550 to $12,500 per semester, totalling $21,100 to $25,000 annually.

Eastern New Mexico University

This public university has a main campus in Portales, New Mexico, and two associate degree-granting branches, one at Ruidoso and one at Roswell. The ENMU is New Mexico’s largest regional comprehensive university and is the most recently founded state university in New Mexico. 

ENMU is the only Southwest region school among 976 schools that reported international student tuition to US News in an annual survey. ENUMU is notably the third-ranked school that costs over $1,000 more per semester.

Bemidji State University

Situated alongside Bemidji Lake and the forests of Minnesota, Bemidji State University is perfect for nature enthusiasts, especially those who enjoy winter activities. With 70 Bachelor’s and eight Master’s degree programs and distance learning options, it caters to various academic interests. If you’re considering on-campus living, you’ll find the university’s campus exceptionally scenic.

  • International students pay the same tuition per semester as students from Minnesota.
  • There are no special requirements to receive and maintain this benefit.
  • BSU offers high-quality education at an affordable price.

2023-24 International Student Estimated Cost Breakdown for One Academic Year

The list below covers the estimated expenses for two semesters as a full-time international student living on campus in a double-occupancy room with a meal plan. International students must reside in on-campus housing for their first year unless they are 21 years older. Also, all international students will purchase the Minnesota State-approved health insurance policy, which costs approximately $2,300, and the full payment for the insurance is due before the semester classes begin. 

  • Tuition and fees $10,440
  • Living expenses (room and meals) $10,726
  • Health insurance $2,300
  • Textbooks, supplies, personal expenses $1,850
  • Estimated total cost (in USD) $25,316

Delta State University

Delta State University is in Cleveland, Mississippi, and among Southern small towns. Cleveland has become a favourite spot for its lively community, vibrant music, and delicious food options. Its affordability makes it an even more attractive place to live. 

Tuition fees: $4,217 per semester for 12-19 hours

This additional fee applies to graduate students enrolled in the MBA program.

Henderson State University

Henderson State University calculates tuition based on a per-hour rate for the 2023-2024 academic year.

Out-of-state tuition is $339 per hour.

The university aims to make the college experience more affordable by offering financial aid options such as scholarships and tuition payment plans.

For out-of-state students, the estimated costs for attending Henderson State University vary depending on the living arrangement and the tuition $9,632

South Dakota State University

Here is the estimated annual cost for international students applying to South Dakota State University for the 2023-2024 academic year. In addition, tuition fees and room and board charges may vary and are subject to annual changes published by the South Dakota Board of Regents. It is advisable to anticipate a yearly increase of up to 5%.

Also, South Dakota State University’s campus has consistently ranked the safest in the state for three consecutive years. The small city of Brookings, where the university is, is renowned for its pleasant environment.

  • Location: Brookings, South Dakota
  • Tuition fees: $5,642 based on 15 credits per semester

Practical Tips for Nigerian Students to Succeed at These Affordable Universities in the US

  • Manage Finances: Make a budget to handle expenses well. You can apply for scholarships and part-time jobs on or off-campus to help with living expenses.
  • Get Ready Academically: Stay organized using planners or digital calendars for your assignments. Make use of campus resources like tutoring centres or advisors for extra help.
  • Adjust to Culture: Connect with students from different backgrounds and join cultural clubs or events to adjust to the new cultural setting.
  • Time Management: Learn to manage your time effectively by setting priorities and balancing studies with activities and personal life.

More Tips to Help You

  • Build Networks: Form professional relationships with professors, classmates, and past students for career insights and potential opportunities like internships.
  • Seek Help: Don’t be afraid to seek university support services for any issues you face, whether counselling, health, or international student support.
  • Stay Healthy: Keep fit by exercising regularly, eating well, and getting enough sleep for your physical and mental well-being.
  • Explore Opportunities: Use campus resources, clubs, and groups to explore your interests, develop leadership skills, and enhance your college experience.
  • Stay Connected: Stay in touch with loved ones back home through regular communication to keep your support system strong and ease homesickness.
  • Focus on Goals: Stay committed to your academic and personal goals, stay strong during tough times, and celebrate your successes along the way to achieving your dreams.


As a Nigerian student looking for affordable Universities in the United States, public state universities offer an option. Lastly, the schools mentioned above provide quality education at low costs. The practical tips here aim to support Nigerian students in excelling academically, managing finances effectively, and adapting socially. Utilizing these insights and resources, you can pursue a rewarding academic journey in the US while realizing your aspirations. Ready to explore your educational options?

Contact us today for guidance and support!


Author Chinwe

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