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If I am undocumented, can I go to college?

Yes, if you are an undocumented student you can go to any college or university in California as long as you meet the requirements and are admitted/accepted.

How do I qualify to pay in-state tuition?

In order to qualify for in-state tuition (at a public California college or university) under AB 540, you must have completed three years of high school in California and graduated, attained a GED, or received a passing mark on the California High School Proficiency Exam (CHSPE).  You must also complete an AB 540 affidavit (California Non-Resident Tuition Exemption form) at the college/university that you will attend stating that you meet AB 540 eligibility requirements.

Is there any type of aid to pay for school if I am an AB 540 student?

Yes, AB 540 students may receive some type of aid to pay for school. State grants may be provided after you submit your Dream Application through the California Student Aid Commission. State University Grants (SUG) may also available for AB 540 students as determined by the Office of Financial Aid.  There are also private scholarships for which you may be eligible.  Refer to the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships as well as the Scholarship page.

What are the differences between the California Dream Act and the Federal Dream Act?

The California Dream Act occurs at the state level. The passage of AB 130 and AB 131 by Governor Brown made The California Dream Act of 2011 an effective law in the state. The law at the state level allows certain undocumented students to apply and receive state financial aid and receive scholarships funded through private donors. On the other hand, the Federal Dream Act seeks to bring conditional residency for qualifying undocumented individuals.

What is DACA?

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) grants certain undocumented youth a work permit for two (2) years and stops the deportation of students who meet certain requirements such as: students that arrived in the US while under the age of sixteen; those who have continuously resided in the US for five years prior to June 15, 2012; and also requires that students be enrolled in school, have graduated from high school, have obtained a general educational development certificate or are honorably discharged veterans of the Guard Coast or Armed Forces of the US.

Will I be able to use my degree upon school completion?

It is important that you consider your alternatives before pursuing a career. Many AB 540 students express this as their biggest challenge upon school completion. State licensing and federal background checks places AB 540 students into a disadvantage as their identity will not match any agency record. Some AB 540 students assimilate the career objectives to related fields or seek equal opportunities in countries that welcome their potential.

Is the AB 540 information I provide confidential?

Yes. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records.  your privacy is important and the information you provide is confidential. The records you disclose in your Dream Application and Affidavit are for university purposes only.

When completing the AB 540 Affidavit, students who are undocumented check the same exact box that U.S. Citizens and Residents do to protect undocumented students. ("I am NOT a nonimmigrant alien. [U.S. citizens, permanent residents, or alients without lawful imigration status, among others, should check this box.])

For more information about FERPA visit,

Please refer to the FERPA Act to know more about your privacy rights including name, address, phone, and migratory status.

Is 9th grade included in the definition of "high school" if it is included as part of a middle school?

Yes. For purposes of eligibility for the tuition exemption, enrollment in the 9th grade, whether at a middle or a high school, counts toward the California high school attendance criterion.

Does the high school enrollment have to be at the same California school and for three consecutive years?

No. The three years for a student's 9th through 12th grades need not be consecutive or completed at a single California school. For example, if a student attended 9th grade at a California middle or high school, left the state to attend 10th grade in another state, and returned to a second qualified California high school to complete 11th and 12th grades, that student would still meet the requirement of three years of high school attendance in California.

Do I need a Social Security Number (SSN)?

No, students are not required to have or use a Social Sercuity number when applying to CSUB.  If the student does not have a SSN, the student should leave the field on the application blank.

May I work on campus? Am I eligible for a paid or unpaid internship?

If the student has received their work authorization and a SSN through DACA, the student may work on campus.  Most students who work on campus are hired as "student assistants" and are paid through public funds, which require residency and a valid social security number.  Undocumented students without DACA are not eligible to work for pay that is funding by public funds.  Non-DACA approved undocumented students are not eligible for paid internships, but may participate in unpaid internships.