Students sitting on the third floor of the Student Center studying and having conversations.

New Jersey Dreamers

Governor Phil Murphy recently signed legislation granting eligible undocumented students access to NJ State Financial Aid. This bill expands upon the New Jersey Tuition Equality Act, also referred to as the “New Jersey Dream Act” to provide NJ Grants and Scholarships to make college more affordable.  Students who qualify can receive funding beginning in the 2018-2019 academic school year.

Eligibility Requirements for DREAMers:

  • Attended a New Jersey high school for three or more years;
  • Graduated from a New Jersey high school or received the equivalent of a high school diploma in New Jersey;
  • Be entering student or currently enrolled in an accredited New Jersey college or University;
  • In the case of a person without lawful immigration status, file an affidavit each year with the institution of higher education stating that states the student has filed an application to legalize the student’s immigration status or will file an application as soon as the student is eligible to do so.
  • To receive state aid, you must be enrolled full-time at a four-year institution or at least half time at a two-year institution.
  • If you are a male, age 18-25, you are required to be registered for Selective Service. If you are not registered, complete the Selective Service Registration Form. You may download the form online or obtain one at the local post office and mail it. For more information on Selective Service for Immigrants and Dual Nationals, please visit the Select Service System Website.
Applying for Financial Aid
  • To apply for NJ financial aid go to the New Jersey Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (NJ HESAA) website to complete The New Jersey Alternative Financial Aid Application.
  • Once you have completed your application, you will need to create an NJ FAMS account.
    • NJ HESAA will contact you to request additional documentation through the NJ FAMS site.
    • Required documentation may include, parent(s) Tax Return Transcripts (2017 for the current 2019-2020 academic year, 2018 for the upcoming 2020-2021 academic year) and/or other income information.
  • Montclair State University will confirm your transcript and high school diploma, along with Selective Service Registration (if applicable), and affidavit.
  • Once your application is reviewed, approved, and certified, you will receive a notification of eligibility. This notification will also be forwarded to the school.
Important Dates

The State of New Jersey adheres to a strict deadline policy.

2019-20

  • Students applying for fall financial aid who have never received NJ TAG MUST complete the application by September 15, 2019.
  • Students applying for fall financial aid who have received NJ TAG before (Renewal Students) must complete the application by April 15, 2019.
  • Students who are attending in the fall must complete follow up tasks required by the state by November 1, 2019.
  • Students applying for spring financial aid, who are NOT attending in the fall, must complete their application by February 15, 2020.
  • Students who are attending in the spring and who have NOT attended in the fall must complete all follow up tasks by March 1, 2020 (or 30 days from initial notification).

2020-21

  • Students applying for fall financial aid who have never received NJ TAG MUST complete the application by September 15, 2020.
  • Students applying for fall financial aid who have received NJ TAG before (Renewal Students) must complete the application by April 15, 2020.
  • Students who are attending in the fall must complete follow up tasks required by the state by November 1, 2020.
  • Students applying for spring financial aid, who are NOT attending in the fall, must complete their application by February 15, 2021.
  • Students who are attending in the spring and who have NOT attended in the fall must complete all follow up tasks by March 1, 2021 (or 30 days from initial notification).

Note: Once you have received TAG, the deadlines will be earlier. For 2020-2021, be prepared to complete your application by April 15, 2020.

More DACA-Undocumented Student Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

I am a prospective student applying to Montclair State University. What types of aid will I be eligible for under the New Jersey Dream Act? How do I apply?
As a prospective student, you may be eligible for scholarships and state grants (including NJ TAG, EOF, NJ Stars, and Gov. Urban Scholarship). Please see eligibility requirements and application information on our page or as listed above.
I live in another state now, but am planning to move to New Jersey to attend college. Am I eligible for New Jersey Dream Act Aid?
No. You must qualify for the New Jersey Tuition Equality Act, which requires that students have attended at least 3 years of high school in New Jersey and graduated from a New Jersey high school.
I am an international student. Am I eligible for the New Jersey Dream Act?
No. Only students with an undocumented status, including DACA recipients are eligible if they meet the criteria of the New Jersey Tuition Equality Act, which requires that students must have attended at least 3 years of high school in New Jersey and graduated from a New Jersey high school.
Is this a one-time award, or can I apply every year?
You must reapply every year. If you transfer to another school, you may need to submit information again for the new school. Please be aware of the stricter deadlines for the subsequent school years.
Does the New Jersey Dream Act affect all undocumented students?
No. The New Jersey Dream Act only affects only students who meet the criteria of the New Jersey Tuition Equality Act,  which requires that students must have attended at least 3 years of high school in New Jersey and graduated from a New Jersey high school.