Frequently Asked Questions
Sometimes many of us have the same question. Please read through our frequently asked questions to see if your question has been answered before.
Q: How careful should I be when talking about my immigration status with school staff?
A: Discretion about your status is a personal choice, however, the smartest choice would be to disclose your status to people you trust.
Q: How do I start looking for scholarships?
A: Download our Scholarship List(PDF)
Q: What are the most convenient schools for students who lack legal documentation?
A: If you lack proper legal documentation, you might be charged out-of-state tuition or even international tuition rates depending on the state where your college or university is located. There are, however, private institutions that could provide you with scholarships to cover partial, if not full tuition. View a list of these institutions by downloading our Comprehensive Resource Guide
Q: How can I help my daughter or son attain a higher education if he/she lacks proper documentation?
A: Build a relationship with his/her teachers and counselors, and be aware of your student’s performance in school. Encourage him/her to excel in school, apply for as many scholarships as possible, and be involved with extra curricular leadership activities. Network with other parents to share knowledge.
Q: If I am a teacher or counselor how can I help my student attain a higher education if he/she lacks proper documentation?
A: Build a relationship with your student and his/her parents. Educate yourself by learning about opportunities, resources and scholarships for your student. Encourage him/her to excel in school, apply for as many scholarships as possible, and be involved with extra curricular leadership activities. Network with other teachers and counselors to share knowledge.
Q: What is the DREAM Act and how would someone qualify for it?
A:The DREAM Act is a form of legislation with specific requirements for individuals who qualify. If it becomes law, the DREAM Act will provide a conditional pathway to citizenship for undocumented youth. While the specific requirements will depend on the final version of legislation, the DREAM Act currently has four basic requirements for adjustment of immigration status:
You entered the country before the age of 16;
You graduate high school or obtain a GED;
You have good moral character (no criminal record); and
You have at least five years of continuous presence in the U.S. before passage of the bill.
Q: Does ScholarshipsA-Z provide its own scholarships?
A: No. ScholarshipsA-Z only provides access to resources to search and apply for scholarships that are provided by other organizations.
Q: What does ScholarshipsA-Z do?
A: We research scholarships that apply to all students, regardless of their immigration status. We help educators and parents advocate for all students to attend college through College 101 and Ally workshops. We provide resources to help students apply for scholarships. We keep our community informed about immigration and education legislation.
Q: Who is on the ScholarshipsA-Z team?
A: Our team consists of high school, community college, undergraduate and graduate students, teachers, advisors, and parents.
Q: Does ScholarshipsA-Z offer workshops that are not online?
A: ScholarshipsA-Z offers community presentations at schools, organizations, and conferences around the country. Our College 101 interactive workshops provide college and scholarship information to high school students, first-year college students, and their families. Our Ally Presentations help counselors, academic advisors, high school and college teachers, and community members learn new ways to advocate for all students, regardless of immigration status.
Q: If I am undocumented should I fill out the FAFSA?
A: Undocumented students cannot legally receive any federally funded student financial aid, including loans, grants, scholarships, and work-study programs. In order to receive any federally supported financial assistance (e.g., Pell Grants, Stafford Loans, etc.), the student must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). FAFSA will run a computerized cross-check of the applicant’s information against both the Social Security and, for non-citizens, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) databases.
Q: Since I can’t apply for FAFSA, are there any ways to receive financial aid?
A: You can print out a hard copy and submit for institutional review if your college or university requests to validate your family income. Ask the Financial Aid department if they can manually calculate your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) for institutional aid.
Q: How can I support ScholarshipsA-Z?
A: Share our website with community members, students, parents and educators. Volunteer with us at our next event. Help more students attend college by donating to ScholarshipsA-Z.Contact your state/national legislators to advocate for the DREAM Act.
Q: Is my donation to ScholarshipsA-Z tax deductible?
A: ScholarshipsA-Z is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Donations are tax deductible.
Q: What will my donation support?
A: Your donation will support student advising, community presentations, outreach materials and daily operations of ScholarshipsA-Z. You may specify what you would like your donation to support.