AB 540 - Eligibility Criteria
The California Dream Act of 2011 is the result of two bills, Assembly Bill 130 (AB130)
and Assembly Bill 131 (AB 131). Together, these bills allow undocumented and documented
students who meet certain provisions of AB 540 law to be eligible for private scholarships
funneled through public universities, state-administered financial aid, university
grants, and community college fee waivers.
Assembly Bill 540, passed in 2001, allows eligible undocumented and documented students
to pay the same tuition and fees as resident students at California public colleges
and universities. You must meet all four (5) below requirements to be eligible:
- Have attended a California high school for a minimum of three years
- Graduate from a California high school or pass the California High School Proficiency
Exam (CHSPE) or get a General Equivalency Diploma (GED, also called General Educational
- Enroll in an accredited California institution of higher education
- Fill out an AB 540 affidavit stating that they have filed or will file an application
to legalize their immigration status as soon as they are eligible to do so.
- Must not hold a valid non-immigrant visa (F, J, H, L, A, E, etc.)
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Graduating high school with honors and realizing I did not have the monetary means to go off to a university like I had always dreamed about felt like a setback. Being at a community college, for my first semester, felt like a detriment to my education. Despite this I began to reach out to other students and was referred by a student to a program called MESA. MESA has shaped my educational career. MESA has provided me with opportunities I would have otherwise missed on my own, an opportunity to work with other like-minded majors who have since become like family. With this kind of strong foundation I have been able to excel in my science, mathematics, and engineering courses.
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