NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—UndocuRutgers, a Rutgers student organization, is holding a free College Fair for undocumented high school students, as well as those currently enrolled in college, on November 19.
The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Cook Student Center located at 59 Biel Road in New Brunswick.
The Center for Latino Arts and Culture (CLAC) and UndocuRutgers have organized the event to inform undocumented students about Rutgers admissions process, and how to apply for financial aid and recieve in-state tuition.
The event will provide further information on the state's "DREAM Act," as well as Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
Passed in 2013, the NJ DREAM Act is designed to help undocumented immigrants who entered the United States at a young age, and have attended New Jersey public schools, to have a chance to attend public universities at the lower, in-state rate.
Meanwhile, DACA provides undocumented children an immigrant status of "deferred action" to those who arrived in the United States prior to their sixteenth birthday. The status lasts for two years and can be re-applied for according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
The CLAC coordinated the logistical aspects of the upcoming fair, which includes providing a venue for the event, food, and securing headsets for live translation to ensure the information be understood by those in attendance, according to Carlos Fernandez, Director of CLAC.
UndocuRutgers students reached out to school districts to pass on information to counselors specifically in high schools according to Fernandez.
Rutgers Admissions Office provides admissions counselors and financial aid counselors to make presentations at the event.
Those presentations are meant to educate undocumented students on the resources they can utilize to make sure they are using their higher education effectively.
UndocuRutgers members also reached out to community-based organizations and other colleges that provide information for undocumented students, according to Fernandez.
The information would consist of what the admissions process entails, and financial aid options for attending college according to Carimer Andujar, the President of UndocuRutgers.
Other organizations participating in and sponsoring the college fair include the Cultural Center Collaborative, Student Access and Educational Equity and the Office of Admissions and Enrollment.
“Our goal with providing this information is to show students who are not yet in college that it is still possible to pursue higher education while being undocumented.” said Andujar.
The event is free and open to the public. More information, registration for free tickets, is available online at the undocuRutgers Eventbrite page.
Charlie is the founder and editor of New Brunswick Today, and the winner of the Awbrey Award for Community-Oriented Local Journalism. He is a proud Rutgers University journalism graduate and a community organizer, and was an independent candidate for Mayor of New Brunswick in 2018.