California Dream Act

10 cosas que debes saber sobre la Ley Dream Act

California Dream Act Banner

The passage of California Dream Acts - AB 130 and AB 131 - extend the eligibility for state funded aid, including institutional scholarships, to undocumented (Dreamer) students. In order to be eligible to apply, students must be considered AB 540 students. Under this California law, students do not have to pay out-of-state tuition and are charged as in-state students. 

Eligibility for AB 540:

  • Attended a combination of elementary/middle school and high school in CA equalling 3 or more years AND
  • Be a High School Graduate (or CHSPE/GED) AND
  • File an affidavit stating that you will apply for legal immigration status as soon as possible. (Important Step)
  • Student cannot hold a valid non-immigrant visa (F, J, H, L, A, B, C, D, E, etc)

At Hartnell College, AB 540 & DACA* students who complete a California Dream Act Application (CADAA) have a different disbursement process than students who complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

CA Dream Applicants DO NOT receive a BankMobile Refund Kit. Applicants receive a check 3-6 weeks after their Financial Aid Files are complete AND Hartnell receives Cal Grant funds from the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC).

Because Dreamers are only eligible for State Aid, we highly recommend    students complete their CADAA by March 2nd of every year. Completing the application before the March 2nd deadline will ensure the student be considered for a Cal Grant Award.

New students who complete their CADAA after March 2nd will only be considered for the Board Of Governors Fee Waiver (BOG). 2nd year Returning Students who did not apply their first year, will need to have their high schools re-send GPA to the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) to be considered for a Cal Grant Award.

Once your application has been completed we recommend you:

1. Complete the California Nonresident Tuition Exemption Form with the Admissions & Records Office (IMPORTANT STEP!)

2. Create a WebGrants Account (https://mygrantinfo.csac.ca.gov) to check for Cal Grant updates and certify information.

3. Check Hartnell Gmail for notifications from the Financial Aid Office

4. Submit “Verification Documents” in ASAP

5. Visit Mi CASA (Hartnell College Dreamer Center) in Building D Room 383 AND the EOPS Office in Building A Room 130 for additional   resources

The CA Dream Act Application

Whether or not students think they are eligible, we encourage them to apply for financial aid every year.

Note: AB540 Students, even those with DACA information, must complete the CA Dream Act App and NOT the FAFSA

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No appoitment required! Walk-ins are welcome.

Important things to remember:

  • Apply early! Applications now available starting in October
  • Submit your application by March 2 
  • Make sure the name you use on the Dream Act App matches your Admissions Application
  • Include Hartnell College on your application. School Code: 00120900
  • Complete the AB 540 affidavit (see AB540 eligibility requirements at the top of this page) 
  • Create a Webgrants Account for updates on Cal Grant Award
  • Reapply every year!