Hillsborough Community College (HCC) is located in sunny Tampa Bay, Florida in the United States and it is one of the largest community colleges, not only in the state, but in the country. The school has a diverse student body with students attending from over 80 different countries. HCC also boasts some of the lowest tuition rates in the United States, making it a popular choice of college for many international students.  

When I first started at HCC, I was looking for an education that would provoke my analytic and imaginative thinking, and provide me the tools I needed to chase my aspirations. However, I was offered much more than just a traditional diploma here. Aside from the personalized attention and academics, HCC’s diverse student body deeply broadened my cultural horizons, making me more competitive for transfer admission to Columbia University, and I am thankful for having the opportunity to meet peers with distinct backgrounds and for the many friendships I developed throughout my time at HCC.

- Paulo Camasmie, Sao Paulo Brazil


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Hillsborough Community College is in beautiful Tampa Bay, Florida – a diverse and vibrant city with a friendly community and almost year-round warm weather. The Tampa Bay Area is one of the state’s fasting growing metropolitans and it attracts students from all around the country and the world.

Tampa Bay has a large multicultural population and international students will be happy to hear that it is easy to find cuisines from all around the world. Gorgeous beaches are just a 30-minute drive away and there are numerous other outdoor activities to enjoy. Students can find a bit of everything in Tampa, from the Ybor City National Historic District and its vibrant nightlife to the exciting art scene and the beautiful local parks, zoos and aquarium. The famous Busch Gardens is located here and Tampa is also only a one-hour drive from Disney World!

Academics and Transfer Programs

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Hillsborough Community College offers students an incredible range of academics to choose from – there are over 160 different programs and transfer tracks available. The school also boasts a very strong 2+2 Path that allows students to complete two years of courses at HCC and then finish their Bachelor’s Degree in another two years at a four-year university or college through a transfer of class credits. This enables international students to experience their new environment and consider different academic paths at a substantially lower cost than a four-year academic institution. The college also participates in the 2+2 Florida International Transfer Fairs to aid students in their university transfers.

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HCC has agreements in place with other academic institutions that help students identify what courses they need to take at the school in order to complete a four-year degree between two institutions in an efficient and timely manner. Furthermore, all HCC associate degree graduates are guaranteed entry into one of Florida’s 12 public universities.

International Students at HCC

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Overseas students who attend HCC take a first-year seminar class that is specifically designed to fit their needs. The school also has a Center for International Education that helps students throughout their academic journey, from admissions, visa applications, academic advisement, social transition, and on to a university transfers. The International Student Ambassador Program at HCC is also a huge source of support for overseas students as student ambassadors welcome new students to the United States and guide them throughout their journey at Hillsborough Community College.

Join HCC’s Honors Institute

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HCC’s Honors Institute caters to exceptionally talented and motivated students and offers hands-on, rigorous learning in a challenging environment that nurtures leadership and service to others. Classes in the Honors program are made up of no more than 15 students, giving each individual the opportunity to interact closely and directly with other students and the professors. This engaging program is run by specially selected teachers who have all completed an annual Honors teacher training. Honors students also enjoy specialized academic advisement and priority course registration, among other great benefits.

Facilities and Services

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Especially helpful to international students, HCC provides on-campus, apartment-style housing – a perk not usually available at community colleges in the United States. There is a wide range of student clubs and an active Student Government Association, ensuring that students have ample opportunity to involve themselves in extracurricular activities during their time at HCC. And for those who love sports – whether it is to watch or play – HCC is proud to be the home of nationally-ranked competitive athletic teams.

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Another useful service offered at HCC is the Career Resource Center (CRC). The CRC staff works diligently to aid students in mapping out their career plans using a range of assessment tools that helps identify special skills and interests. The CRC also helps students build their resumes and prepares student for future job interviews and a workplace environment.  

If you are interested in applying to Hillsborough Community College, click on its SchoolApply profile page to find out more!