Counseling » Undocumented Students

Undocumented Students

What Help is Available for Undocumented Students?

If you're undocumented, it means you weren't born in the United States and you don't have official papers to live here legally, like a visa or green card. This situation can seem scary, but it shouldn't stop you from pursuing college! California colleges are friendly and inclusive places for learning. You can access the assistance you need to succeed. You CAN go to college!


AB 540/AB 2000/SB 68

AB 540, AB 2000, and SB 68 are state laws. They let undocumented students:

  • Pay in-state tuition at public colleges in California. That means you pay the same, lower amount as other students who live in the state.
  • Get state financial aid, like the Cal Grant. It can help with costs like tuition, housing, and food.

You might come across these laws on financial aid websites, and sometimes you'll see just AB 540 mentioned. To find out if you're eligible and to learn more about financial aid for undocumented students, get more information here.


Applying to College

Here's some important information for undocumented students applying to college:

  • You don't need a Social Security number (SSN) to apply to the following:
    • California Community College (CCC)
    • California State University (CSU)
    • University of California (UC)
    • Private colleges that use the Common Application
  • If you're using an application that asks for an SSN, reach out to the admissions office for guidance.
  • If you're comfortable sharing your status, consider incorporating your story into your college essay. Colleges appreciate seeing how you've overcome challenges.

Where Can You Get Help?

Dream Liaisons or Centers

Every public college in California has Dream Resource Liaisons, and some even have Dream Centers. These are here to support you with various aspects:

  • Financial aid
  • Academics
  • Internship opportunities
  • Legal services
  • Campus and community resources

Use this map to locate the Dream Resource Liaison or Center at your college. Additionally, you can explore resources for undocumented students at CCC, CSU, and UC.

For private colleges or colleges in other states, check their websites for information on resources for undocumented students.


Immigrants Rising

Immigrants Rising is an excellent online resource that covers a wide range of areas for undocumented individuals:

  • Obtaining official documents
  • Finding employment
  • Enhancing your mental well-being
  • Pursuing higher education

Discover all their college-related resources and support here.


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