Posted on August 21, 2019

NJ Gave More Than $3.8 Million in Financial Aid to Undocumented College Students Last Year

Monsy Alvarado, North Jersey Record, August 19, 2019

More than 700 undocumented students received more than $3.8 million in college financial aid for the first year during which New Jersey made the aid available to those without legal status.

The figures, provided by the state Higher Education Student Assistance Authority, show that 749 students in total received the aid during both the fall and spring semesters of the 2018-19 school year. Most of the aid, more than $3.5 million, was awarded under the New Jersey Tuition Aid Grant, or TAG, program.

Students at Rutgers University received the largest portion of the aid, with more than $1.3 million awarded to recipients attending that school. The next-largest portions were: $273,610 to students at the New Jersey Institute of Technology; $271,671 to students at St. Peter’s University; and $206,850 to those at Montclair State University.


Undocumented students are also eligible for the state’s Equal Opportunity Fund, which provides financial assistance and support services to students from educationally and economically disadvantaged backgrounds. Undergraduate grants range from $200 to $2,500 annually.

Seventy-five EOF awards worth $47,487 were distributed, according to HESAA figures. Essex County College students received the largest portion, at $11,500, followed by students at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, who received $4,375.

Gov. Phil Murphy signed a law in May 2018 that {snip} extended state financial aid to undocumented students in New Jersey who meet certain criteria.


Immigrants without legal status who are interested in applying for financial aid must have attended high school in New Jersey for three or more years and either graduated from a New Jersey high school or received the equivalent of a high school diploma in New Jersey. They must also have registered for selective service.

Applicants must submit affidavits stating that they will file an application to change their immigration status or will do so as soon as it is possible.