Information for Undocumented Students

Mills College works with undocumented, AB 540, DREAMer, and DACA students to help them apply for admission and financial aid so they can achieve their goal of earning a college degree. Here’s everything you need to know to get started.

How to Apply to Mills | Applying for Financial Aid

What Is AB 540? How Does It Relate to the California DREAM Act?

California Assembly Bill 540 (AB 540) is a law that allows students who meet certain criteria to pay the same tuition as state residents and, through the California DREAM (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) Act (PDF), apply for state financial aid and scholarships awarded by private and public colleges.

What Is DACA ?

The federal DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program was created by presidential executive order in 2012. It gives undocumented students who came to the US before age 16, and who meet certain additional criteria, the opportunity to remain here to study or work.

Mills Is a Safe Space for You.

The private information of all students applying to Mills College is protected through the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). FERPA “protects the privacy of student records at all institutions, including colleges and universities.” This mandate ensures that Mills will not disclose information about your citizenship status that you share with our admissions and financial aid offices.

How to Apply to Mills

Whether you're an undocumented, AB 540, DREAMer, or DACA student, we make it easy for you to apply for admission. Just complete the Mills Application or Common Application online.

We invite you to contact your admission counselor to discuss any concerns or questions you may have.

Admission Application Tips

The Citizenship Question

  • Mills Application
    • For the primary citizenship question, choose your country of birth.
    • Indicate that you are not a US permanent resident.
    • On the resulting international student information tab, input your country of birth and choose “I do not hold a currently valid US non-immigrant visa” as your visa status.
    These selections along with your US high school information will let us know of your undocumented status. You can also contact your Mills admission counselor and we will make those changes to your application for you.
  • Common Application
    • On the profile section of the Common App, find the citizenship tab.
    • Select your citizenship status. If you were born outside of the US, select Other (Non-US) and then select your country of birth.
    • For the “currently held United States visa” question, choose “I do not hold a currently valid US non-immigrant visa” as your visa status.

These selections along with your US high school information will let us know of your undocumented status. You can also contact your Mills admission counselor and we will make those changes to your application for you.

Social Security Number

  • If you have a valid Social Security Number (SSN)—for instance, because of immigration proceedings—enter that on the admission application.
  • If you have an SSN for work purposes (usually through DACA), enter that on the admission application.
  • If you don’t have a valid SSN or SSN for work purposes, leave this item blank.

Personal Statement

You are not required to use your personal statement or additional comments section to discuss your citizenship status. Since Mills is interested in knowing about your background and how it has shaped you and your future goals, it may provide useful context during the Admissions Committee’s review of your application. Your personal statement and comments will not be used outside of the admission application process.

Applying for Financial Aid

Mixed-Status Families

If your immediate family members hold different immigration statuses—for example, you are a US citizen while one or both of your parents are undocumented—then you are part of a mixed-status family. If you are a US citizen, you are eligible to apply for federal and state need-based financial aid regardless of your parents’ citizenship status. You also are eligible for Mills need-based and merit scholarships.

When filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), if your parent(s) do not have social security numbers or individual tax payer identification numbers (ITIN), enter 000-00-0000 in that section. Otherwise, complete the FAFSA as directed. If you attend school in California, you must also complete the Cal Grant GPA Verification form. Follow the deadlines listed on our financial aid page.

AB 540 and California DREAMer Students

The California DREAM Act of 2011 (PDF) allows students who meet specific requirements and who are ineligible for federal financial aid to apply for state aid and scholarships from colleges and universities. You’ll need to complete the online California Dream Act Application, including the Cal Grant GPA Verification form.

Undocumented Students Who Are Not AB 540- or DACA-Eligible

Students who are not AB 540- or DACA-eligible can still be considered for Mills scholarships, but are not eligible for state or federal aid. You’ll need to submit a completed, printed copy of the PDF FAFSA. Mail your completed form to us directly at:

Financial Aid Office
Mills College
5000 MacArthur Blvd.
Oakland, CA 94613

Outside Scholarship Resources for Undocumented Students

Connect with a Counselor

Websites can’t always cover everything you want to know, but Mills admission counselors are here to help you through every step of the application journey. Find your counselor.

Mills College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, marital status, age, religious creed, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, or disability in our admission policies, in our scholarship and loan programs, or in the educational programs, cocurricular activities, and residential facilities which we operate. Students of all genders are eligible for admission to our graduate programs. Self-identified women and people assigned female sex at birth who do not identify with the gender binary are eligible for admission to our undergraduate programs.