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Rebecca ChiangJun 5, 2024 1:30:17 PM3 min read

3 Affordable Day 1 CPT Schools Alternative to Trine and Cumberlands

When searching for Day 1 CPT schools, you might consider institutions like Trine University and the University of Cumberlands as attractive options due to their low tuition fees and convenient locations. However, it is essential to understand that these schools might not be the right fit for all students. For instance, the University of Cumberlands does not accept students who need a change of status, such as those changing from H-1B/H-4/B-2 to F-1. On the other hand, Trine University does not allow students to travel internationally during academic terms. This restriction could potentially lead to risks associated with re-entering the United States.

If you are wondering, "What other schools can I consider?" don’t worry—we have put together a list of 3 affordable CPT schools as alternatives.


1. University of the Potomac


University of the Potomac, located in Washington D.C, is an alternative to the Virginia campus of Trine University. Potomac is one of the most affordable CPT schools on the east coast. The tuition cost of its master’s programs is only $ 11,125 per year, and the cost of its doctoral programs is only $8,880 per year

Unlike most Day 1 CPT schools, which only offer a few programs, Potomac has a diverse selection of 12 programs. It offers not only STEM programs such as CS, IT, and Accounting, but also healthcare-related programs such as Healthcare Administration and Healthcare Informatics. 

If you seek to change from H-1B, H-4, F-2 or other visas to F-1, Potomac could be a great option. This school allows you to work under CPT from the first day of the program, without having to wait 9 months!


2. New England College


Another CPT school on the east coast worth considering is New England College. The cost of its CPT programs is merely $8,316-9,240 per year, and it also provides a monthly payment option, making it more affordable for students. 

Located in the New Hemisphere, New England College only requires international students to attend on-site classes once per semester. The other courses are online. They offer programs in MBA, MS Data Analytics, Cybersecurity and IT Project Management, which are suitable for students from a wide range of careers.

Note that New England College requires applicants to hold a master’s degree from the U.S. and have work experience.


3. CIAM (California Institute of Advanced Management)


After exploring two great Day 1 CPT schools on the east coast, it’s time to dive into west coast schools. CIAM (California Institute of Advanced Management), located in Alhambra, California, is conveniently accessible whether you live in the Bay Area, SoCal, or nearby states like Washington, Arizona and Texas. CIAM offers MBA programs with concentrations in Project Management and Business Analytics.

Its annual tuition is around $13,326 per year, which covers many additional fees such as book fees, technology fees, and enrollment fees. 

If you have a bachelor's degree from the U.S. and want to increase your chances of getting an H-1B, CIAM is the right choice. As a nonprofit school, CIAM could make you eligible for the H-1B master's cap, significantly boosting your chance of getting selected in the H-1B visa.


Still not sure which Day 1 CPT school to choose? We get it—navigating the options can be overwhelming. To avoid potential risks, it is important to carefully investigate each Day 1 CPT school before submitting your applications. But don’t worry, our experienced consultants are here to help! Contact us for personalized school recommendations and make the best choice for your future.


Relevant Readings:

Day 1 CPT Costs & Scholarships

Selecting a Day 1 CPT School by Tuition