Resources for Undocumented Students
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Although undocumented students are unable to qualify for federal student aid using the FAFSA, there are a number of scholarships at Whitworth University and beyond to make attending a private college possible.
Undocumented students attending Whitworth are considered for the university's academic and artistic achievement scholarships. Additionally, undocumented students who are also Washington residents may also be eligible for financial aid funding through the state of Washington, including the Washington State Need Grant, the Washington State College Bound Scholarship, and the Washington State Work Study program.
Beyond HB 1079 is a student leadership project founded at the University of Washington in 2012. In addition to an annual leadership conference, the group prepares an annual scholarship list with Washington state and national scholarships, and contact information for higher education institutions in the state. Visit the Beyond HB-1079 website under Scholarships to view its full list for this year. In 2003, the Washington State Legislature approved HB (House Bill) 1079, an unprecedented action to make college more affordable for undocumented students in Washington state. See its webpage for information about this legislation and additional scholarship opportunities.
Mental Health & Wellness
Whitworth is invested in ensuring our capacity to provide responsive mental health and health resources to all of our students, including undocumented students.
The Whitworth Health & Counseling Center is committed to serving you. We pride ourselves on maintaining a nurturing and supportive environment with personal touches that make you feel welcome and cared for. You are a part of our community, and we hope to help make your college experience a time of growth in mind and heart. Caring for your body is just as important as nurturing your mind.
Puentes mobilizes mental health resources to help undocumented migrants and their families cope and flourish. The group creates innovative therapeutic spaces to promote social healing, promote the recovery of social agency, and engage community members to work on immigration issues in the U.S. For more information about the group's resources, visit the Puentes website.
NAFSA (the Association for International Educators) has provided up-to-date information for undocumented students interested in studying and traveling abroad. The following links provide support and advise students to not pursue study-abroad opportunities until the future of DACA is known.
- DACA Blog by NAFSA
- NAFSA's official resource page for DACA (December 2016)
- DACA Presentation at NAFSA Conference 2016 (May 2016)
Students who are DACA recipients are eligible to work on and off campus with work authorization documents. Most students choose to provide an I-766 (the card issued to undocumented individuals who are authorized to work temporarily in the U.S.) or I-551 (the Permanent Resident Card). A full list of documents can be found on Page 3 of the I-9 Form. Additionally, a Social Security number is required to fill out the W-4 form.
The Whitworth University Career Services Office is committed to providing the resources and guidance required by our students and alumni as they discover their unique talents and abilities, exercise these abilities through experiential opportunities, and effectively initiate and implement their career plans. We provide individualized advising and services to students throughout their undergraduate experience and after graduation. Our career-planning guidelines are a great way to begin. To make an appointment, come to Whitworth Career Services (Hixson Union Building, second floor) or call 509.777.3272.
Legal Resources and Information
Whitworth is engaging our network of alumni and friends who hold expertise in immigration law to connect students to legal clinics, resources and consultation opportunities that may be of assistance to them as they navigate questions related to immigration status and implications.
- World Relief, Spokane
- Catholic Charities, Spokane
- DREAM Act
Since 2001, there have been several iterations of legislation in the U.S. Congress to resolve this dilemma. The Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act was originally introduced in 2001 as bipartisan legislation at the federal level (S. 1291) by Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch and Democratic Sen. Richard Durbin to provide a pathway to permanent residency and U.S. citizenship for qualified undocumented immigrant students. Under the rigorous provisions of the DREAM Act, qualifying undocumented youth would be eligible for a six-year-long conditional path to citizenship that requires two years of completion toward a four-year degree, completion of an associate degree or four years of military service. In 2010, although the bill received enough votes to pass in the House of Representatives, and the legislation had majority support in the Senate with 55-41 in favor, 60 votes were needed for closure and passage; hence the DREAM Act bill failed to pass.
DREAM Act Eligibility
- Proof of having arrived in the United States at age 16 or younger.
- Proof of residence in the United States for a least five consecutive years since their date of arrival.
- Must be between the ages of 12 and 35 at time of bill enactment (depending on the version of the bill).
- Having graduated from an American high school or obtained a GED.
- Have a "good moral character," essentially defined as the absence of a significant criminal record (or any major drug charges), compliance with selective service laws and an absence of fraudulent information in documents.
- Qualify for "conditional" status during a six-year period if they meet criteria.
- Need to meet one of the three following criteria in the six years:
- Graduate from a two-year community college
- Complete two years toward a four-year degree
- Serve in the military for four years
Know Your Rights
The following information serves as a tool to guide you and help you understand the pathway to achieve U.S. residency and citizenship. Furthermore, you will find information about the civil rights and liberties that all humans have under the Constitution.
Permanent Residency and Citizenship
Learn about what it takes to become a permanent resident or citizen of the United States by clicking on the following links:
Civil Liberties and Rights When Stopped By a Police Officer, Immigration Official or the FBI
To read more about your rights during an immigration raid or if an official arrives at your doorstep, please read page 10 of Immigrant and Refugee Children: A Guide for Educators and School Support Staff, created by United We Dream, the National Immigration Law Center, First Focus and the AFT.
- You have the right to remain silent
- Know who to call (i.e. relative, attorney)
Don't Provide the Following Information
- When and where you were born
- Your address
- Where your parents were born
- Where you lived before living in the U.S.
- When you came to the U.S.
- Your nationality
- Where your passport is from
- Whether you have a Social Security number
- Whether you or your family members have U.S. citizenship, permanent residence (green card) or other immigration documents
- False information (name, etc.)
- False identification
- Answers to questions about immigration status
Create a Plan
- Have an emergency contact list
- Do not carry identification with false information
- Keep door closed
- Ask what agency law enforcement officers are a part of
- Ask Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and/or police if they have a warrant — have them slip it under the door
If in Immigration Detention
- Do not sign any documents regarding voluntary departure/order of removal
- Call your attorney/relative
- Obtain a notice to appear
For more information about civil liberties and rights, please visit the American Civil Liberties Union website.
Urgent Support & Resources
- Life After College: A Guide for Undocumented Students (Published by Educators for FAIR Consideration)
- Repository of Resources for Undocumented Students (Published by the College Board)
- IL DREAM ACT Undocumented Student Guide to College
- IL DREAM ACT Counselor Guide to Resources for Undocumented Students
- College Advising Guide for Undocumented Students (Published by the Illinois Association for College Admission Counseling)
- Resource Guide: Supporting Undocumented Youth
- Immigrant and Refugee Children: A Guide for Educators and School Support Staff
- Immigration Policy Center: American Immigration Council
- National Immigrant Youth Alliance
- United States Student Association: Education Is A Right!
- Dream Resources Center
- Educators for Fair Consideration (E4FC)
- National Immigration Law Center
- DREAM Activist: Undocumented Students Action & Resource Network
- United We Dream
- American Civil Liberties Union
- Immigration Impact
- Pew Hispanic Center
- Ideas for Change