NJ lawmakers consider tuition assistance for undocumented students
- A study from the New Jersey Policy Perspective found affordability is limiting college access for undocumented citizens in the state, an issue that could be partially resolved with current budget allowances.
- The average annual household income for an undocumented family in New Jersey is about $34,000, with financial and citizenship obstacles limiting access to saving money or securing loans for college.
- Funds to offer eligible undocumented students financial aid would amount to about $7 million annually, about half of the state’s current allotment for state financial aid support.
In California, millions in student aid reserved for undocumented students is going unused, as some students are afraid that paperwork could lead to deportation for themselves or for their families.
States like Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina specifically prohibit in-state tuition or public institution enrollment for these students, against 18 states where provisional admission and aid are granted. When adding the ineligibility of undocumented students for federal loans and grants, even comprehensive state and institutional scholarship programs may not be enough to help students cover tuition, and ancillary costs like books, housing, transportation to school, and learning technology.
- NorthJersey.com Calls grow for equal access to tuition aid