Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity

Student Financial Aid

Leaders across Washington’s higher education system issued a joint statement expressing concern over this action, and a commitment to continue to support DACA recipients in our colleges and universities.

Individuals with DACA who have established state residency will continue to be eligible for state higher education benefits including those whose DACA expires.  Those who do not have (and are no longer able to apply for) DACA will be restricted to the “1079” eligibility outlined below.

Benefit Eligibility

Undocumented students establish residency in one of two ways – referred to as “1079” and “DACA.”  Students in either classification may be eligible for in-state tuition rates and State Need Grant.  Students with DACA residency may be eligible for other forms of financial aid including the College Bound Scholarship.

  • In general, the “1079” standard applies to undocumented students who have graduated from high school after having lived in Washington for three years.
  • DACA permits individuals to establish a domicile in Washington. In general, students need to live in Washington for a year for other than educational purposes.

Continued Eligibility for DACA Students

In general, DACA individuals who have established state residency will continue to be eligible for financial aid if they meet HB 1079 eligibility.

As a reminder, previous and current guidance includes:

  • Residency classification remains unchanged unless contrary evidence is presented/discovered.
  • The receiving institution may accept the residency determination from a previous institution.

Please do not hesitate to contact the State Need Grant team at sng@wsac.wa.gov.  Residency questions can be directed to residency@wsac.wa.gov.

Will students whose DACA expires starting in March lose access to financial aid?

DACA grantees (and former DACA grantees) are not eligible for federal financial aid. They remain eligible for Washington state aid so long as they meet the HB 1079 criteria and for other private scholarships.  Expiration should not affect their current financial aid directly funded by the UW, except for financial aid that is in conjunction with employment such as graduate assistantships or research positions. Graduate and professional students should consult with their departments for guidance on assistantships.  

Can former DACA grantees qualify for financial aid or scholarships?

Some private scholarships are available to students regardless of status, while others may be available only to DACA grantees and other students who are lawfully present in the U.S.  For other types of aid, please see the Benefit Eligibility section above as aid eligibility will vary given your DACA or HB 1079 status.

Are there emergency funds available to help DACA students employed by the University whose work permits will expire starting in March 2018?  Should there be no congressional or other federal action by March 5, can the UW help those currently employed (such as DACA graduate students with TA/RAships) through the end of the academic year (June 15)?  

There are short-term loan funds and limited grants available through the UW Financial Aid office for emergencies that may help cover tuition, housing and other educational related expenses. Individual administrative units or academic departments may have limited emergency funding based on financial need.