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The College Guide for Advising Undocumented ... - College Forward

The College Guide for Advising Undocumented ... - College Forward

Introduction TABLE OF

Introduction TABLE OF CONTENTS Facts about Undocumented Texans and Higher Education… 2‐3 Undocumented Students’ Perceptions of College… 4‐6 Preparing for College Overview… 7 FAQ's to Applying to College and Cash for College: ITIN and Tax Information… 8-11 University Leadership Initiative’s Guide for Texas Immigrant Students… 12‐13 Financial Aid Process Applying for Financial Aid Step‐by‐Step… 14‐15 Flow Chart of Procedures for Financial Aid… 16 Dispelling Myths Overview… 17 9 Things Every Undocumented Youth Should Know… 18 Immigrant Legal Resource Center’s (ILRC) Immigration Basics… 19 Justice for Immigrants… 20-22 Factsheet on Naturalization Through Military Service… 23-24 National Immigration Law Center’s [2009] Basic Facts About In‐State Tuition for Undocumented Immigrant Students… 25-27 Resources Overview... 28 Financial Aid and Admissions Documents Affidavit for SB1528 students… 29 Selective Service… 30 Financial Aid Available for Undocumented Students… 31‐34 Introduction to the Scholarship List… 35 Scholarship List Austin Area Scholarships… 36-38 Texas Scholarships… 39 National Scholarships… 40-42 Further Reading… 43

Introduction This guide is a project of the Austin College Access Network (ACAN), a joint task force of non‐profit organizations and educators in Central Texas. Two compelling forces drove ACAN to compile a guide for advising undocumented students who are interested in pursuing higher education: first, a law (previously HB 1403 and currently SB 1528) came into effect in 2001 that enables undocumented students to qualify as Texas residents within the state’s public higher education system, and pay in‐state tuition. Secondly, more undocumented students have the opportunity to pursue a college degree than we might expect: in 2004, UNICEF estimated that 65,000 undocumented children who have lived in the United States for five years or longer graduate from U.S. high school each year. Unfortunately, confusion about how to counsel undocumented students prevails. This guide is an attempt to clearly present the facts and dispel the myths enveloping this critical issue. More about Texas House Bill 1403 and Senate Bill 1528 Effective since 2001, Texas HB 1403 enables immigrant students, including those without documentation, to qualify as Texas residents and pay in‐state tuition at public colleges and universities in the state. This tuition is much lower than the tuition paid by international students. In 2005, the Texas Legislature approved a new law, SB 1528, which expands the benefits of HB 1403. To qualify under these laws, a student must meet the following four provisions: (1) Graduate from a public or private high school, or receive a GED, in Texas; (2) Reside in Texas for at least the 3 years leading up to high school graduation or receiving a GED; (3) Reside in Texas for the 12 consecutive months right before the semester you are enrolling in college; and (4) Provide the institution an affidavit stating that you will file an application to become a U.S. permanent resident as soon as you are eligible to do so. Immigrant students who do not meet the requirements above but who have filed an I‐130 (family petition) or I‐ 140 (work petition) with immigration services (USCIS), and have received a Notice of Action as a response from the USCIS, are also eligible to receive in‐state tuition if they have been here for at least 12 months. People holding work visas (H1‐B) and their dependents (H‐4) can now also receive in‐state tuition at state universities. The same rule applies for NACARA and TPS applicants, among others. Students who are classified as Texas residents under this law also qualify for state financial aid! If a student has completed the recommended high school program, s/he can receive the TEXAS Grant and the Texas Public Education Grant (TPEG) at public universities. There are several other financial aid programs you may receive at a community college, technical college or at a private university: the Texas Educational Opportunity Grant (TEOG), Texas Equalization Grant (TEG), or the College Access Loan (CAL). To apply, students will need to fill out the TAFSA or FAFSA (depending on the institution), even if they do not have a social security number, and submit it directly to the university/college that they plan to attend. Most universities in Texas offer academic scholarships to which any student, regardless of his/her immigration status, can apply. If an immigrant student is awarded one these scholarships, and the amount is at least $1000 per year, he/she becomes eligible to pay in‐state tuition. 1

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