Missouri bills shutting doors for DACA students


Financial aid eligibility for students with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) has become a target for Missouri’s legislators.

During the 2015 legislative session, lawmakers have introduced five bills that would deny DACA students financial aid opportunities for pursuing postsecondary education. The Post-Dispatch reported online and in print about two Foundation DACA students pursuing college, and included a photograph of Foundation Education Policy Intern Karina Arango. In addition, the Post-Dispatch reported on local universities affected by these bills and their policies to serve qualifying undocumented students. Of the universities listed in the report, the University of Missouri—St. Louis (UMSL) was highlighted for its policy change to financially support qualifying undocumented Missouri high school students.

When asked about UMSL’s policy change, Scholarship Foundation Executive Director Faith Sandler said “There is no homeland for these students to go back to….From a practical, a moral and an economic standpoint, this [policy change] is in the best interest of them and the state.”

In an effort to continue The Foundation’s mission to offer financial support to students who lack resources, The Foundation expanded financial aid eligibility to DACA students to help support their pursuit of higher education.

Although UMSL and other universities look to provide undocumented students higher education opportunities, lawmakers are blocking their efforts.

For more insight into the lives of DACA students and the legislations’ effects on them, read the Post-Dispatch’s article here.