Opportunity Scholarship FAQs
When is the application period?
- Application opens: November 1, 2023
- Application closes: January 31, 2024, at 11:59 PM Pacific Time
- Notifications will be emailed by mid-March 2024
What are the academic requirements?
- Be a current high school senior or high school graduate with a GPA of 2.5 or greater (on a 4.0 scale) living in a targeted locked-out state; or
- Be a currently or previously enrolled college or university undergraduate student with a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or greater, living in a targeted locked-out state.
What are the immigration eligibility requirements?
- Applicants must be undocumented with or without DACA or TPS and have come to the United States before November 1, 2018, and have continuously lived here since then.
- Applicants must have also come to the United States before the age of 16 (if you were born in the U.S. – you are not eligible for our scholarship).
What are “locked out” states?
These are states where undocumented students are required to pay out-of-state tuition or prohibited from enrolling in the state’s colleges and universities altogether. Undocumented students from the following locked out states are eligible for the Opportunity Scholarship:
- New Hampshire
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
How do I apply?
To apply, go to: https://www.thedream.us/scholarships/opportunity-scholarship/
Who are TheDream.US Opportunity Scholarship Partner Colleges?
- Delaware State University, Dover, Delaware
- Dominican University, River Forest, Illinois
- Eastern Connecticut State University, Windham, Connecticut
- Christian Brothers University, Memphis, Tennessee
- Trinity Washington University (women’s college), Washington, D.C.
Please research each of these colleges (majors offered, proximity to home, cultural fit, etc.) prior to selecting your Partner College choice. If awarded, you will not be allowed to switch colleges.
Do I need to apply separately to the Partner College(s) for admission?
Yes, you must apply for admission to the Partner College(s) of your choice before the scholarship application deadline of January 31, 2024. Applying to TheDream.US Opportunity Scholarship does not guarantee admission to these Partner Colleges.
Helpful tip – you can apply to all of these schools at once by filling out the Common App.
What is the difference between TheDream.US Opportunity Scholarship and TheDream.US National Scholarship?
TheDream.US Opportunity Scholarship Program is for undocumented students who live in targeted locked-out states where they are either required to pay out-of-state tuition or prohibited from enrolling in the state’s colleges and universities altogether. This scholarship is for up to $80,000 in total for a bachelor’s degree at one of our Opportunity Partner Colleges.
TheDream.US National Scholarship Program is for undocumented students who are eligible for in-state tuition at one of our National Partner Colleges. This scholarship is for up to $16,500 for an associate’s or up to $33,000 for a bachelor’s degree at one of our National Partner Colleges.
What happens if I become a permanent resident or gain legal status?
You will continue to be eligible for our scholarship. Once you obtain permanent residency status, you must apply for federal financial aid that includes the Pell Grant, federal loans, and federal work study.
What is the amount of the scholarship award?
The scholarship award is up to $20,000 per year for four years for tuition, fees, and on-campus housing and meals. While this is a generous scholarship, due to the high cost of college education, it is likely you will have to fund some of your education out-of-pocket.
Will the scholarship cover all my college expenses, including room and board, books and supplies, and transportation?
No. The scholarship award covers tuition, fees, and on-campus housing and meals. Books, transportation, personal items, and some fees are not covered by this scholarship.
Will the scholarship cover additional fees required for certain majors?
No. The scholarship award covers tuition, fees, and on-campus housing and meals. Any additional costs like “lab fees” for majors like aviation, etc. will not be covered by the scholarship.
Can I stay in alternative housing (off campus)?
No, we require our Opportunity Scholars to live on-campus.
Will the Opportunity Scholarship pay for a minor or double major?
The Opportunity Scholarship covers the cost of tuition and fees for a bachelor’s degree. If you want to pursue a minor, you will need to consult with your Scholar Advisor to determine whether the minor will require additional classes beyond those required for your bachelor’s degree. If additional classes are required, you will need to pay the additional costs for those classes.
A double major will require additional credits and money beyond the amount of your Opportunity Scholarship award. You should consult with your Scholar Advisor to ensure you understand and are able to pay for the additional costs.
Will I be able to change my major?
You should select your major as early as possible to ensure that you are taking all the necessary classes to complete your degree within four years. If you decide to change your major, consult with your Scholar Advisor to ensure that you understand whether any additional classes will be required and what the costs of those classes will be.
Can the scholarship be applied toward graduate school?
No. You may only use the scholarship funds for a bachelor’s degree.
If I receive the scholarship, do I have to start right away?
Yes. You must relocate to and enroll full-time in a bachelor’s degree program at one of our Partner Colleges that are part of the Opportunity Scholarship program for the Fall 2024-25 academic year.
Do I have to reapply each year?
No, but you must renew your scholarship each academic year. You will be asked to confirm your continuing eligibility and provide a copy of your transcript.
Note: If you do not renew by the indicated deadline, you will lose your scholarship.
How can I donate?
Donating to our cause is easy! Simply click our “Donate” link and follow the instructions.
I am a teacher. How can I help?
Reach out as early as possible to all students and encourage them to envision themselves as college material, and if the opportunity arises, let undocumented students know that their immigration status does not prohibit them from attending college.
I am a parent. How can I help?
Let your child know that their immigration status does not prohibit them from going to college. Encourage them to search for scholarships and, if you can, help them complete their scholarship applications. Most importantly, do what you already do: believe in them so they can believe in themselves.