Questions to ask when…

Researching colleges and developing a list

  • Are there any state laws which bar undocumented students from public colleges or universities?
  • Does the college or university admit undocumented students?
  • Does the university require students to submit a social security number and proof of residency?
  • Is there a point person in admissions that the student/counselor can contact with questions?
  • Are other undocumented students enrolled in the college/university?
  • Does the institution have a policy regarding whether or not it will report undocumented students?
  • Will the institution consider undocumented students for institutional or private aid?
  • Is an undocumented student eligible for merit aid?
  • Does the institution offer any special scholarships for international students? Can undocumented students apply for these scholarships?

Completing applications

  • Does the application ask for a social security number?
  • If a student does not have a social security number should they use zeros or leave it blank?
  • Does the application have an appropriate “box” for an undocumented student on the section that asks about citizenship?
  • If a student does not/cannot answer all of the questions on the on-line application will it be submitted or do they need to complete a paper application?
  • Can a student submit an on-line application if they are using a fee waiver?

Applying for financial aid and scholarships

  • Does the institution require all applicants, even those who are undocumented, to complete a FAFSA in order to be considered for private or institutional scholarships?
  • Will the institution accept the College Board CSS Profile or an institutional form in lieu of the FAFSA?
  • What other forms must be completed?

Considering majors

  • Does the major require a background check?
  • Does the major lead to certification or state licensure for which an undocumented student might be ineligible?
  • Are advisors and career development staff aware of these issues?