In light of the new Trump administration, here is what you need to know about Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA):
- Initial DACA Applicants — No new initial applications are being accepted at this time.
- Renewal DACA Applicants — For those who need a DACA renewal (as in their DACA is expiring before March 6, 2018), we continue to support in the application process and fees, while funding lasts.
- All renewal applications are due to USCIS no later than October 5, 2017.
DACA Renewal and Support
Whether you are an undocumented student yourself, or a faculty or staff member looking for ways to provide support, we have resources to guide you.
Contact the MIPS team if you have any questions or concerns—we are happy to help.
On June 15, 2012, the Secretary of Homeland Security announced that certain people who came to the United States as children and meet several guidelines may request consideration of deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal. They are also eligible for work authorization. Deferred action is a use of prosecutorial discretion to defer removal action against an individual for a certain period of time. Deferred action does not provide lawful status.
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is a kind of administrative relief from deportation. The purpose of DACA is to protect eligible immigrant youth who came to the United States when they were children from deportation. DACA gives young undocumented immigrants: 1) protection from deportation, and 2) a work permit. The program expires after two years, subject to renewal.
A person may request consideration of DACA if they:
- Were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012;
- Came to the United States before reaching their 16th birthday;
- Have continuously resided in the United States since June 15, 2007, up to the present time;
- Were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making the request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS;
- Entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or their lawful immigration status expired as of June 15, 2012;
- They are currently in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States; and
- Have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
For information about renewing DACA, please contact the Volunteer Lawyer Network. The Volunteer Lawyers Network is offering free special renewal appointments for current DACA holders who need to renew their DACA permission/work authorization by the October 5, 2017 deadline and to help with other DACA-related issues.
Call the VLN intake line as soon as possible on Monday, Wednesday or Thursday between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. at 612-752-6677.
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
Provides line by line instructions and videos on how to apply for DACA either first time or renew your existing period of DACA.
The Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota (ILCM)
ILCM provides legal assistance for initial and renewal DACA; the legal assistance is free for low income persons. They do request a donation to sustain their work.
Mexican Consulate in St. Paul
First-time DACA applicants of Mexican descent can receive $455 USD to help offset the application fee. Need must be determined by a member of their Protection Department, and the student does pay a $10 USD application fee.
Consulate General of Ecuador in Minnesota
Consular services and advocacy for Ecuadorian citizens in Minnesota.
Life After College: A Guide for Undocumented Students
While initially it may seem as though undocumented students have limited options upon graduating from college, this guide is intended to shed light on the possibilities that do exist.
United We Dream
The largest immigrant youth-led organization in the nation with a focus on empowering undocumented youth organizing and advocating for the dignity and fair treatment of immigrant youth and families, regardless of immigration status.
My (Un)Documented Life
Provides up-to-date information and resources by posting scholarship opportunities that are open, strategies for navigating the educational system, information on how to apply DACA/ Advanced Parole, news on DAPA, and much more.
Medical School Policies for Undocumented Students
Provides a partial list of medical schools that have reported willingness to consider DACA applicants. This is not a up-to-minute nor comprehensive list so students are encouraged to directly contact admissions offices.
MN Office of Higher Education
For MN Dream Act, SELF Loan and other state funds/higher ed questions.
The largest network of undocumented immigrant young adults in Minnesota; provides education, advocacy, and fellowship opportunities for the immigrant community in Minnesota.
Immigrants Rising (formerly Educators for Fair Consideration)
Programs and services that holistically address the needs of undocumented young people through direct support, leadership development, community outreach, and advocacy.
Big Future by College Board
Find out how they did and who helped them along the way.
DACA & Undocumented Student & Alumna Group
The Multicultural and International Programs and Services (MIPS) Office houses "Expanding the DREAM." Support for DACA students includes community building, staff and faculty support, networking, access to an immigration lawyer and informational resources. We welcome the participation of all students and alumna who are themselves undocumented or DACA-mented to connect with Expanding the DREAM Student Group by contacting the MIPS staff, Roslyn Udairam at firstname.lastname@example.org and Kimberly Munoz at email@example.com.
We invite non-identifying staff, faculty, and alumni/ae who have an interest to support Undocumented and DACA-mented students to get involved by providing resources and support. You can reach out to MIPS@stkate.edu or 651-690-6784 with any opportunities or to inquire more.
- Minnesota Immigrant & Refugee Rights Help Line help line open for legal questions in regards to DACA
- Take Action: Ways to Fight Back
- U.S. Department of Education Resource Guide: Supporting Undocumented Youth, a resource guide to assist and enhance state and local efforts to support undocumented youth at secondary and postsecondary schools levels
- Educators for Fair Consideration: Top 10 Ways to Support Undocumented Students
- National Forum on Higher Education for the Public Good Recommendations & Resources to Increase Access for Undocumented Students – Provides organizations that can provide relevant information and in some cases, assistance or advice when questions arise with undocumented students seeking to attend college
There are many resources and scholarships available to help undocumented students with their college education. Within the state of Minnesota, undocumented students can apply for state financial aid by completing a MN Dream Act application. The application must be submitted no later than the 30th day of the term and should be submitted once for each academic year the student is enrolled in college.
The MN Dream Act (also known as The Prosperity Act) was introduced by Senator Sandra Pappas (SF723) and Representative Carlos Mariani (HF875) and was included in the omnibus Higher Education bill passed by the 2013 Minnesota Legislature and signed into law by Governor Dayton on May 23, 2013.
The MN Dream Act will provide certain benefits to undocumented students who meet the following criteria:
- Attended a Minnesota high school for at least 3 years; and
- Graduated from a Minnesota high school or earned a GED in Minnesota; and
- Registered with the U.S. Selective Service (applies only to males 18 to 25 years old); and
- Provide documentation to show they have applied for lawful immigration status but only if a federal process exists for a student to do so (does not include applying for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). There is currently not a federal process in place, so this documentation is not currently required.
Students who meet the criteria in the MN Dream Act will be eligible for the following benefits:
- In-state resident tuition rates at public colleges and universities.
- State financial aid available to students who meet state residency requirements.
- Privately funded financial aid through public colleges and universities.
Financial Aid and Undocumented Students
Provides information about student financial aid for undocumented students as well as guidance for a specific subgroup of undocumented students who have received DACA.
COFEM Mexican American Dream Scholarship
COFEM, its affiliated federations, and sponsoring partners have come together to provide scholarships to outstanding students. These scholarships have helped more than 275 students to complete their higher education.
SELF Loan Application
The SELF Loan is a long-term, low-interest student loan. Because the SELF Loan is administered by the Minnesota Office of Higher Education, a state agency, the interest rates may be lower than private loans and some federal loans. With the SELF Loan, you know before you apply what your interest rate is. Rates are the same for everyone and are not based on credit scores like most private loans.
Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowships For New Americans
Every year, The Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans supports thirty New Americans, immigrants or the children of immigrants, who are pursuing graduate school in the United States