DACA is the acronym for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, a program created in 2012 by the Obama administration allowing young people brought to this country illegally by their parents to get a temporary reprieve from deportation and to receive permission to work, study and obtain driver's licenses.

The Colorado ASSET law allows eligible undocumented students to pay in-state tuition and receive the College Opportunity Fund stipend at Colorado public colleges.

If you are a DACA/ASSET student in need of financial assistance, please review the following resources

  1. Complete the ASSET Student Financial Aid Application 2023-2024 (Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Summer 2024) AND/OR ASSET Student Financial Aid Application 2024-2025 (Fall 2024, Spring 2025, Summer 2025) . Alternatively, you may complete the form online through the State of Colorado at https://cdhe.colorado.gov/students/preparing-for-college/colorado-application-for-state-financial-aid
  2. Read more at Financial Aid and Undocumented students from the US Department of Education.
  3. Use the UCCS Scholarship Search - keywords “DACA” or “ASSET” to find scholarships open to accepting applications.
  4. Review Payment Plan options.
  5. Research Private educational loans:
    • A number of private education loans are available to international students.
    • To review how to apply for a private educational loan, please visit our website.
    • For more information on applying for a private loan, contact a private lender of your choice, as each lender will have their own qualifications that must be met.
  6. Pursue Student Employment Opportunities.
    • Students who were not born here, but are working under an eligible visa would be allowed to work under the conditions of their visa or permanent resident statuses.

Right now the impacts to student employees who are DACA recipients are unclear. Currently employed DACA students are still working. It is possible that for a limited time these positions will continue in this manner, however this will depend on the specific action taken by the government and when that action is taken.

Federal law forbids employers from knowingly employing individuals who lack proper authorization to work in the country. DACA recipients are given an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) to allow them to work legally in the country. If the government repeals DACA, it is also possible that it may demand the return of a student’s EAD. If this occurs, the student will not be able to keep their job.

If the DACA program ends but a person is allowed to keep their EAD, that person should be allowed to continue their employment until their EAD expires. After their EAD expires, the person will not be able to renew it and consequently their employment will end.

The Social Security card a DACA student received as a result of having a valid grant of DACA only allows for work authorization in conjunction with a valid grant of DACA. Unfortunately, a person cannot use the Social Security Number (SSN) issued to them through DACA for employment once they are no longer legally authorized to work through DACA. While their SSN is permanently theirs and can be used to file income tax returns, the work authorization allowed for on the Social Security card might be temporary, depending on congressional action.

If you currently do not have authorization to work under DACA or another eligible work authorization status you would not be eligible for employment at UCCS.

This information was drafted using large portions of borrowed information from California State University and the University of California Legal Services Center in August 2017 (who is a leader in student support surrounding DACA-www2.calstate.edu)that was then reviewed and revised by our campus legal counsel.