California Dream Act Application

The California Dream Application is now available at California Dream Act website. Students made eligible for Financial Aid based on the California Dream Act must complete this application in order to be considered for Financial Aid.

Read our FAQ below and visit University of California - California Dream Act for more information.

  • What is the California Dream Act?

    The California Dream Act became law through the passage of two assembly bills, AB 130 and AB 131. Collectively, these bills are known as the California Dream Act. They allow certain, qualified nonresident students, including those who are undocumented to apply for Cal Grants, and institutional grants and scholarships awarded by California public colleges and universities. These new laws took effect on January 1, 2013 with respect to UC institutional aid and will take effect Fall term of the 2013-14 school year with respect to Cal Grants.

  • Does the California Dream Act affect all undocumented students?

    No. The California Dream Act affects only students who are exempt from paying nonresident tuition under a previous Assembly Bill, AB 540. To qualify, students must have attended a California high school for at least three years and graduated from a California high school. In addition, undocumented students must attest that they have filed an application to legalize their immigration status, or will file an application as soon as they are eligible to do so.

    At UCSB, AB 540 determinations are made as part of the Statement of Legal Residence process in the Office of the Registrar. Only the campus Residence Deputy can make decisions related to AB 540 eligibility. Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships staff will not be able to assist you in making these determinations

  • How will undocumented students apply for Cal Grants and UC financial aid?

    Eligible students will apply for Financial Aid using the California Dream Application, administered by the California Student Aid Commission. The application is now available at California Dream Act website. Students should also review the California Student Aid Commission’s site to determine if you are required to submit a Cal Grant Grade Point Average (GPA) Verification Form.

    Documented students, who are eligible for Financial Aid, should file the FAFSA at the FAFSA website.

  • Why did UC support the California Dream Act?

    UC believes that students who attended and graduated from high school in California, but are not legal residents, should have access to higher education. These students are highly motivated to succeed despite the obstacles they face. Through their hard work and perseverance, they have met the academic standards required to attend UC. Their accomplishments should not be disregarded or their future jeopardized because of their immigration status. By allowing AB 540 students to apply for and receive Financial Aid from the State and UC, these bills help place these students on a more equal footing with other needy students and would enhance their access to college.

  • How many students will benefit under the California Dream Act?

    UC estimates that about 800 undergraduates who will qualify Cal Grant entitlement awards worth about $7 million. Among these students who are newly-eligible for Cal Grants, UC estimates that about 300 are undocumented and 500 are documented. UC estimates that about 440 undocumented undergraduates will qualify for roughly $4.3 million in UC grants and scholarships. These are rough estimates only, however, because UC does not currently collect information about the income or other financial resources of undocumented students.

  • Will expanding aid to undocumented students result in less aid for documented students?

    Cal Grants received by undocumented students will not reduce the number or amount of Cal Grant awards available for other students. For UC grants and scholarships, the impact on other students will be negligible because undocumented students represent a tiny fraction of the student body. (UC estimates that fewer than one-half of one percent of its students are undocumented.)

  • Where will funding for UC awards come from?

    UC’s financial aid programs are primarily funded from tuition revenue. UC sets aside about 30 percent of undergraduate tuition revenue for Financial Aid. Undocumented students pay into this pool but have been prevented from receiving any assistance from it. Under the California Dream Act, eligible undocumented students with financial need can apply for aid.