By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley)– Cal State San Bernardino has become the newest higher education partner in TheDream.US, a national program launched in February with the goal of providing college scholarships to more than 2,000 undocumented students around the country.
“This program offers a wonderful opportunity for students who would be shut out of higher education despite their academic successes, qualifications and financial needs,” said Cal State San Bernardino President Tomás D. Morales. “This initiative will help our university provide our students with the opportunity to achieve their academic and career goals, and in turn benefit our society as they become contributing members of the workforce in their communities.”
The program is the result of the collaboration between business and education leaders and current and former elected officials from across the country, who gave their input on the best approaches to enable DREAMers to succeed academically. DREAM stands for Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors, said Candy Marshall, president of TheDream.US.
“We, as a nation, have an opportunity to leverage the investment we have already made in these young, highly motivated men and women by offering a scholarship fund that will support them in joining our next generation of talented health care providers, educators, accountants, scientists, software developers and social workers,” said Marshall. “They are part of our country’s future.”
To date, more than 300 scholarships have been granted from TheDream.US program, which was launched with an initial $25 million scholarship fund from philanthropic and business leaders across the country. The scholarships will cover up to 100 percent of tuition costs, fees and books to a maximum of $25,000.
The program was founded by Graham Holdings Company CEO Donald E. Graham, Democratic activist and philanthropist Henry R. Muñoz III, and former U.S. Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez.
Other philanthropic and business leaders across the country include the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The Coca-Cola Foundation, The Gilbert and Jacki Cisneros Foundation, The PepsiCo Foundation, Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan, through Startup:Education. And through the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the program received gifts from Pierre and Pam Omidyar as well as a generous anonymous donor. In addition to these philanthropic gifts, more than 200 individuals have donated more than $30,000.
CSUSB joins at other colleges and universities in New York City, Washington, D.C., Florida, Texas, and California, who have become partners in the national scholarship program. The scholarship is available to students attending any of the partner colleges.
To be eligible for a scholarship through TheDream.US program, applicants must meet the following criteria:
• Be a first-time college student enrolled in one of TheDream.US partner colleges or a community college graduate seeking to complete a bachelor’s degree; • Have graduated from a U.S.-based high school with a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 or higher (or equivalent GED score) or a community college graduate with a grade point average of 3.0; • Be DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals ACT)-eligible and have applied for/received DACA approval; • Must demonstrate financial need; • Must show a strong motivation to succeed in a career-ready associate’s or bachelor’s degree program.