Attention DREAMers!

A new state law has expanded eligibility for the Washington State Need Grant to low income, non-citizen students who meet the program’s eligibility requirements and also satisfy the residency criteria below:

  • Have graduated (or will do so before beginning college) from a Washington High School, or obtained a GED®
  • Have lived in Washington for three years prior to, and continuously since earning the high school diploma or equivalent.

How to Apply – The WASFA

To apply for the State Need Grant, students who are unable to file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) due to immigration status, may instead complete the free Washington Application for State Financial Aid (WASFA). Visit the website below to apply:

Note: Eligibility for the State Need Grant does not guarantee an award, as the grant is provided on a funds available basis. The sooner students complete a WASFA, the better chance they have for consideration of limited State Need Grant funds.

Other Resources:

Gates Millennium Eligibility Requirements

Minimum GPA:
3.3 on 4.0 scale

African American, American Indian-Alaska Native, Asian & Pacific Islander, or Hispanic American

Residency Status:
U.S. Citizen, Permanent Resident or Foreign National

Academic Classification:
High school senior, GED recipient, or high school graduate entering an accredited college for the first time as a full-time, degree-seeking, first-year student

Financial Need:
Must meet Pell Grant eligibility criteria

Frequently Asked Questions

What does it mean to be undocumented?

An undocumented person is a non-citizen who entered the U.S. without legal immigration status or who stayed after the period he/she was authorized to be here.

What is DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals)?

On June 15, 2012, the Secretary of Homeland Security announced that immigrants who arrive to the United States as children and meet several key guidelines may request consideration of deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal, and would then be eligible for work authorization. Deferred action is discretionary determination to prevent removal action of an individual as an act of prosecutorial discretion. Deferred action does not provide an individual with lawful status. You may learn more about Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), and helpful resources and services to support undocumented students and DACA applicants at:  US Center for Immigration Services (USCIS) DACA Page, and Northwest Immigrant Rights Project

I have Deferred Action status. Can I pay resident tuition?

Washington State has no provision at this time for deferred action students to pay tuition at the resident rate. Students who meet the conditions of HB1079 may pay resident tuition.

If I am undocumented, can I apply for financial aid?

As an undocumented student, you are not eligible for federal financial aid (FAFSA). However, in 2014 the state’s financial aid law was amended so that undocumented students may be considered for need-based state aid (State Need Grant). For more information on eligibility and the application process for the State Need Grant, please visit

Where can I find out about scholarships for undocumented students?

There are several places where you can find scholarship lists that do not require you to be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident, and that do not ask for a social security number. The following websites include scholarship lists: