Diversity, Undocumented Students

What You Need to Know about the End of DACA

No Comments 12 September 2017

The Trump administration, in response to legal threats from attorneys general in conservative states, has moved to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The program will expire in March 2018.

The Trump administration has stated that the U.S. Congress, not the White House, should be responsible for extending or altering the program. Congress has not acted to extend the program and it’s unclear if it will.

It is likely that the program’s end will be challenged in federal court.

Here’s what you need to know about the program’s end, as it stands now:

  • Work authorizations will remain valid for two years.
  • If a work authorization expires on or before March 5, 2018, people covered under DACA can apply to renew the authorization. The renewal application must be submitted by October 5, 2017.

  • After a work authorization expires, employers must reverify an employee’s authorization to work in the U.S. A company must dismiss an employee if the employee cannot document that they are authorized to work in the U.S.
  • Even if your DACA status lapses, you still can receive health insurance. If a DACA recipient receives health insurance through an employer, they can continue the health insurance after termination through COBRA by paying the full cost. COBRA is typically limited to 18 months after termination.
  • Social Security Numbers (SSN) received under DACA remain valid for filing tax returns. They should continue using the SSNs and not seek an ITIN to replace the SSN.
  • Eligibility for in-state tuition and state grants depends on the policies of each state. DACA students never were eligible for federal student aid.

Diversity, Undocumented Students

College Options for Undocumented Students

No Comments 08 February 2017

Although there is no federal law that requires proof of citizenship to be admitted to U.S. colleges, undocumented students face their own set of hurdles in the application process. Here are some institutions and states that make college more attainable for undocumented students.

Private Colleges that Accept Undocumented Students as Domestic Students

Many colleges consider undocumented students to be international students, which means that undocumented students might have to compete with other international students for a limited pool of financial aid. But, when a college considers an undocumented student to be domestic, the student will be more likely to receive a good financial aid package.

The following private colleges have public policies on their acceptance of undocumented students as domestic students:

  1. Pomona College (Claremont, Calif.)
  2. Oberlin College (Oberlin, Ohio)
  3. Tufts University (Medford, Mass.)
  4. Emory University (Atlanta)
  5. Swarthmore College (Swarthmore, Pa.)

States That Offer Undocumented Students In-State Tuition

Undocumented students, including students with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status, are not eligible to receive federal financial aid. However, undocumented students may be eligible for state student financial aid in some states.

Undocumented students who attended high school for at least the last two years in certain states could be eligible for in-state tuition. As of 2015, the following states allow undocumented students to pay in-state tuition:

  1. California
  2. Colorado
  3. Connecticut
  4. Florida
  5. Illinois
  6. Kansas
  7. Maryland
  8. Minnesota
  9. Nebraska
  10. New Jersey
  11. New Mexico
  12. New York
  13. Oregon
  14. Texas
  15. Utah
  16. Washington

A number of these states also allow undocumented students to receive state-level financial aid. Reach out to college financial aid offices to learn more.

Colleges That Meet 100 Percent of Financial Need for Undocumented Students

College Greenlight has a list of more than 30 colleges that meet 100 percent of demonstrated financial need for undocumented students. These colleges pledge to meet a student’s full need through grants, student employment, scholarships, and, in some cases, student loans. Schools on this list vary in the ways they meet undocumented students’ demonstrated financial need.

Pay for College, Undocumented Students

Colleges that Meet 100% of Financial Need for Undocumented Students

No Comments 22 December 2016

College affordability is a big concern for many students and their families. Paying for college is even more difficult for undocumented students. Luckily, there are several colleges that are dedicated to making undocumented students’ college dreams come true. These colleges meet 100% of the students’ demonstrated financial need with grants, student employment, scholarships, and, in some cases, student loans.

We have compiled an alphabetical list of colleges that meet 100% of financial need for undocumented students. If you are interested in learning more, check out these schools on College Greenlight. Please note that these colleges pledge to meet a student’s full demonstrated financial need. Most students will still have an expected family contribution they are responsible for.

Amherst College Amherst is committed to meeting 100% of the full demonstrated financial need of every admitted student, regardless of citizenship or immigration status. Financial aid packages for non-U.S. citizens include on-campus employment and institutional grant aid, without loans. Undocumented and DACA students must submit the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE form and federal income tax returns or income verification to apply for financial aid.

Bates College Bates treats undocumented and DACA students as domestic applicants and meets 100% of demonstrated financial need for those admitted to the college, regardless of citizenship or immigration status. Undocumented and DACA students must submit the College Board PROFILE and provide federal tax returns or other income verification to Student Financial Services in order to apply for financial aid.

Bowdoin College Regardless of citizenship, Bowdoin is committed to meeting 100% of all students’ demonstrated financial need. The college will provide an institutional package comprised of grants and on-campus employment.

Bryn Mawr College The college does not separate undocumented students into an “international” or “domestic” pool. Bryn Mawr will meet the demonstrated financial need of any student, including those who are undocumented.

Brown University As long as students self-identify as undocumented and request aid at the time of their application submission, Brown will meet 100% of the student’s financial need. Eligibility for aid is solely based on financial need.

Carleton College Only students with DACA status are considered among all other legal permanent residents and US citizens at Carleton College. The college only offers admission to students whose need they are able to meet.

Colby College Colby is dedicated to meeting 100% demonstrated financial need of all students, regardless of background. Undocumented students are treated like international students.

Columbia University Undocumented citizen applicants at Columbia University are eligible for the same need-blind admissions policy that applies to US citizens, permanent residents, and eligible non-citizens. The university guarantees to meet 100% of all admitted first-year students’ demonstrated financial need for all four years, regardless of citizenship.

Cornell University – DACA students are recognized in the domestic financial aid pool and Cornell meets the full demonstrated need for all admitted domestic students. These students will be considered in the DACA/domestic aid pool for their entire time at Cornell.

Dartmouth CollegeDartmouth will meet full need of undocumented students with employment, scholarships and/or loans.  Freshmen must complete the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE and the College Board’s Institutional Documentation Service (IDOC).

Duke UniversityUndocumented students must apply to Duke as international students; counselors can call and inform Duke that the applicant is undocumented. Eligibility is based solely on financial need. The university will meet 100% of demonstrated need.

Emory UniversityEmory considers students who are granted DACA status to be domestic students, and the university meets 100% of demonstrated financial need for all admitted domestic students.

Harvard College  Undocumented students apply to Harvard as international students and are eligible for grants and loans from Harvard based on financial need.

Haverford College The college will meet 100% of demonstrated need for all students, regardless their background.

Macalester College Macalester is committed to internationalism and multiculturalism and meets 100% of demonstrated financial need for all admitted students. Undocumented students who are not permitted by law to work in the US will receive additional student loans to replace the amount typically earned through an on-campus job.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology – An applicant’s citizenship status will not have any impact on their chances of admission at MIT or the availability of full need-based financial aid.

Middlebury College – Undocumented or DACA students should follow the same application process as any other student. Middlebury will meet 100% demonstrated financial need for all admitted students. To apply financial aid, just complete the CSS profile by the deadlines indicated on the site.

Oberlin College An undocumented/DACA student indicates their interest in applying for need-based and/or merit-based financial aid on the Common Application. If that student is accepted, Oberlin will meet 100% of demonstrated need.

Occidental CollegeOccidental considers undocumented students to be international students and the college will fully fund 2-4 international students every year. Undocumented students must apply for financial aid at the time they apply for admission.

Pomona College Pomona will meet 100% of need for DACA and undocumented students. The college will provide these students with the support and resources they need in the application process.

Princeton University – Admission to Princeton is offered to students regardless of their ability to pay, and the full need of every admitted student is met regardless of citizenship.

Rice University Rice will meet the full demonstrated financial need of undocumented and DACA students through scholarships, work study, and available loans.

Smith CollegeSmith meets 100% of the demonstrate need for all admitted students who apply for financial aid by the appropriate deadlines. Since federal aid is not available for undocumented and DACA students, Smith will provide institutional, need-based financial aid in its place.

Swarthmore College Swarthmore’s admissions process for undocumented and DACA students is need-blind. The college will meet 100% of demonstrated need with aid awards that do not include loans that need to be repaid.

Tufts UniversityTufts will meet 100% of demonstrated need of all-admitted students. While procedures for financial aid vary between domestic and international applicants, undocumented students are considered domestic and will receive institutional need-based financial aid like U.S. citizens.

University of Chicago All students, regardless of citizenship, will have their full demonstrated financial need met. The university will also assist undocumented students in other ways, such as help with visa status.

University of Notre DameNotre Dame admits and meets the full demonstrated need of undocumented students.

University of Pennsylvania – The university will meet 100% of a student’s demonstrated financial need without loans. Need-based financial aid is awarded when the student is admitted to Penn.

Vassar College Undocumented students are considered international applicants at Vassar. The college will meet the entire demonstrated need of these students for the entirety of their enrollment at the college.

Wellesley CollegeWellesley is committed to meeting 100% of demonstrated need for all admitted undocumented and DACA students. These students are considered international applicants.

Wesleyan University – Wesleyan meets 100% of demonstrated need for all admitted students who apply for financial aid. The college treats undocumented students just like any U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

Williams CollegeWilliams College will meet 100% of demonstrated financial need for every admitted student, every year.

Yale UniversityYale admits students without regard to their ability to pay and the institution meets 100% of demonstrated need for all students without loans.

Undocumented Students

4 Scholarship Tips for Undocumented Students

No Comments 20 January 2016

Paying for college is tough, but for undocumented students it can seem nearly impossible. The US Government does not allow undocumented students to receive any federal financial aid. Furthermore, most states also do not allow undocumented students access to taxpayer-funded aid (however, some states do–make sure to check! ) Without the help of federal or state financial aid, undocumented students must heavily rely on scholarships and extreme patience. Here are some tips if you’re undocumented and trying to finance your education.

1. Figure out exactly how much your degree will cost you

Finding out just how much you’ll need to pay for their higher education is difficult to estimate. Some states permit undocumented students to pay the lower in-state tuition state residents pay for their state’s public institutions. On the other hand, other institutions may treat undocumented students like a foreign student and charge them out-of-state tuition regardless if they have resided in the state.  This all varies from state to state–make sure you’ve done your research on the most up-to-date legislature where you live and where you want to attend college.

2. Be especially careful when reviewing residency and eligibility information 

Regardless if you’re paying in-state or out-state tuition, any tuition will be costly without the help of scholarships, and as many undocumented students have found discovered, scholarships requiring students to be U.S. citizens or to provide a Social Security number disqualify you from applying. When searching for scholarships, look carefully over the eligibility requirements and look for what if any residency requirements are listed.

Don’t see any residency requirements listed? You may assume that just because they don’t explicitly state it, that it’s OK to go ahead to apply. Don’t make any assumptions. If they don’t list citizenship requirements or specifically indicate that undocumented or non-U.S. citizens can apply, then students should contact the scholarship to clarify. If you meet all the requirements except for the residency requirements listed, then you should still contact the scholarship provider to see if they can make an exception. It never hurts to ask!

3. Don’t be afraid to tell your story 

For scholarships that are specifically for undocumented students, students should use their personal story of being undocumented to their advantage. In your personal statement be sure to discuss your undocumented status, but don’t make it the centerpiece of your story. Undocumented students are often only judged for their undocumented status, that’s why it’s important to highlight all of the accomplishments made despite the setbacks that being undocumented can bring.

4. Find scholarships on College Greenlight 

We can help you find scholarships just for you! When you fill out a free profile on College Greenlight, you’ll be able to access a list of scholarships matched to you based on your academics, citizenship status, and accomplishments.  We also regularly publish lists of scholarships available to students regardless of citizenship status. You can find our most recent list of these scholarships here.



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