Current DREAMers DREAMers logo

DVC offers a wide range of programs to help undocumented students succeed. From financial aid and basic needs to clubs and student life, we encourage dreamers to maximize their college experience at DVC by exploring the resources listed below.

Financial Aid: California Dream Act

Undocumented students are eligible for the following financial aid programs at DVC:

California Promise Grant

The California Promise Grant is a state-funded program that waives the $46 per unit tuition fees for students who meet the requirements. To apply, students must:

Cal Grant

The Cal Grant is a state-funded program that provides up to $1656 per year to help students with college expenses such as books, supplies, transportation, housing, etc. To apply, undocumented students must:

Student Success Completion Grant

The Student Success Completion Grant is a state-funded program that provides up to $4000 per year to help students with college expenses such as books, supplies, transportation, housing, etc. To apply, undocumented students must:

Chafee Grant

The Chafee Grant is a state-funded program that provides up to $5000 per year to help former foster youth students with college expenses such as books, supplies, transportation, housing, etc. To apply, undocumented students must:

Questions?

Check out these additional resources:

If you have any questions about financial aid programs for undocumented students or the status of your California Dream Act application, please contact Phoebe Keesey, Financial Aid Program Coordinator, at pkeesey@dvc.edu

Scholarships

Scholarships

Undocumented students are encouraged to apply for scholarships to help with the cost of attending college. Click here to see a full list of scholarship resources for undocumented students. For questions regarding scholarships, contact scholarships@dvc.edu or call 925-969-2094.

EOPS

EOPS

Undocumented students who are eligible for AB540 and the California Promise Grant may apply for Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS).

EOPS is a comprehensive retention and support program designed to promote the academic success of low-income and educationally disadvantaged students. Students receive textbook vouchers, priority registration, dedicated counseling, and a variety of other beneficial services.

Click here to learn more and apply for EOPS.

Basic Needs

Basic Needs

We understand that focusing on your educational goals can be challenging if your basic needs are not met. Basic needs are the conditions and resources you need to survive and thrive. These can include, but are not limited to food, housing, clothing, financial, and access to wellness and mental health services. DVC has partnered with various community organizations to build a basic needs community on campus. Undocumented students are welcome to be part of the community and access resources. Click here to learn more.

If you are struggling to meet your basic needs, please contact basicneeds@dvc.edu for support.

Academic counseling

Academic Counseling

Need help selecting the right classes? Not sure what major or career to pursue? Academic counselors can help students with course selections, choosing a major, creating an educational plan, and staying on track to accomplish your goals at DVC. Counselors can also help you navigate challenges and overcome potential barriers you may face as an undocumented student in higher education.

Click here to learn more and schedule your counseling appointment.

Mental health and wellness

Mental Health and Wellness

Feeling overwhelmed and need someone to talk to? You are not alone! College can be a stressful time and prioritizing your mental health is critical to your success. DVC offers a variety of mental health resources for students including group counseling sessions about stress-management and self-care. Undocumented students are welcome and highly encouraged to utilize these services. Sessions are confidential and a safe space to speak freely.

Click here to learn more about Mental Health and Wellness at DVC.

Click here to learn more about other mental health resources in Contra Costa County.

Disability Support Services

Disability Support Services

Disability Support Services (DSS) ensures that students with disabilities have access to all that DVC has to offer. The DSS program offers appropriate support services, curriculum, instruction, and adaptive technology. Including but not limited to:

  • testing accommodation
  • note taking services
  • equipment and software
  • alternative media services
  • dedicated counseling
  • tutoring
  • priority registration

Click here to learn more about Disability Support Services.

Learning Communities

Learning Communities

Don't go it alone! If you'd like to work with other students and friendly faculty who share your interests and concerns, then check out DVC's learning communities.

In a learning community, you take a set of classes (two or more) together, which gives you a great opportunity to make friends. Even better, these shared classes are specifically designed to help you do your best as a college student. Classes in a learning community are linked by common themes or student interest. Check out the list below to find a community that works for you. Visit our Learning Community website to view the full list of learning communities you can join at DVC!

FYE

The First Year Experience Program curriculum is designed to engage students by offering various Learning Communities pathways that are both challenging and collaborative. The spirit of the Learning communities is to educate, as you might expect, but to also build community amongst students and faculty.

MESA

MESA (Math, Engineering, Science Achievement) is a statewide program for educationally and economically underrepresented students majoring in calculus- based Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics (STEM) fields.

Puente

The Puente Project combines English instruction, with a focus on the Mexican American/Latino experience, Counseling, and mentorship to help Puentistas transfer to colleges and universities.

Community of Pride

Community of Pride is a new learning community that focuses on LGBTQ+ history, activism, and also meets your general education requirements. 

Umoja

Umoja (a Kiswahili word meaning unity) is a statewide community of educators and learners committed to the academic success, personal growth and self-actualization of African American and other students.

Clubs and Student Life

Clubs and Student Life

Interested in starting a Dreamer's Club at DVC?

Student government, clubs, and activities at Diablo Valley College are student initiated and run. Involvement in student organizations and activities provides opportunities to develop valuable leadership and interpersonal skills that will benefit you as a student while at DVC, as well as in the future. Students learn to organize and to work with others, pursue special interests, and make friends.

Click here to learn more and get involved!

  • Odette Tapia, Biology major

    “ I joined the DVC DREAMers Alliance and I began to take up space in rooms where I knew I could make a difference. The DREAMers Alliance provided a sense of allyship. I remember the first day I showed up to those meetings. I was usually the only student there. Frightening at first but I began to use my voice giving them an inside look of what being undocumented was really about. I also got to network with faculty that knew where I came from like and who opened doors such as the DREAM SF Fellowship."

    - Hernan Soto, DREAMer Alumni 

  • Cristobal Castañeda, DREAMer Alumni

    "Although I faced many barriers as an undocumented college student, I feel fortunate to have found genuine support and guidance at Diablo Valley College. I’m incredibly thankful to all the professors, counselors, and classmates who welcomed me warmly and encouraged me to pursue my educational goals. Now that I’m transferring to a 4-year university, I feel confident in my ability to succeed academically while helping to lead efforts in making education a possibility for all students, including DREAMers."

    - Cristobal Castañeda, DREAMer Alumni

  • Pauline Poe, Mechanical Engineering major

    “No Human Being Is Illegal On Stolen Land. Our undocumented status does not and will never define who we are as people. We are so much more than the “legal papers” this country is looking for. I know that it took some time for me to accept myself and my status, and every day I still try to find ways to accept myself especially when the country we know doesn’t accept us. We have to remember that there is nothing wrong with taking our time to feel, ask for help, and to just be. We are human beings and we should be treated as such."

    - Hazel Pinon, Current DREAMer

  • Gabriel Gabru, Scholarship recipient

    "As a first-generation college student and an undocumented immigrant, it was always a dream of mine to pursue higher education. When coming to the United States I knew being here was a privilege and an opportunity, one I did not have in my home country of El Salvador. After I graduated high school I knew that my road to success had to include higher education but because of financial struggles, my options became limited. Finally, I took the decision to come to DVC, and I can honestly say it was the best decision I made. Here at DVC I found a community of other Latinos with goals similar to mine."

    - Lilian Ventura, Current DREAMer

  • Chris Calderon

    "Being low-income I have not had the educational opportunities that middle-class families have. All my life I attended schools with students predominantly African-American or Hispanic. We were not given the proper resources to succeed in this educational system. So in order for me to continue on my journey, I had to work twice as hard. I managed to learn and apply to scholarships and financial aid even though I am undocumented. The professors, mentors, and tutors at DVC have prepared me academically and with great perseverance and determination. I’m proud to say that I am now attending the University of California, Berkeley, and majoring in sociology."

    - Maria Bojorquez, DREAMer Alumni

  • Joseph Worku, Computer Science major, MESA Alumni, current UCSD student

    "Extracurricular activities sometimes take the most out of you but they're worth it. While I was at DVC I took advantage of the Latinx Student Alliance Club, Student Assistant at a Cadaver Lab, Speech and Debate team, Work Study at the Office of Student Engagement and Equity, The DREAMers Alliance, The PUMA Center, and the abundance of mentors. I faced my fears by getting involved and I met some of my best friends because of my involvement."

    - Hernan Soto, DREAMer Alumni

  • Luis Almendarez

    "One of the worries I had when I started college was being able to afford it. Given that I am undocumented, I do not qualify for FAFSA. During my first semester of college I was charged as an out-of-state student, I was afraid that I would not be able to take classes due to financial inability. Luckily, California is one of the states that allow in-state tuition to dreamers known as AB540 and I was also qualified for the Dream Act, and EOPs which had been a tremendous help for me."

    - Hazel Pinon, Current DREAMer