Delaware State University and TheDream.US jointly announced a partnership that will implement a unique scholarship program for immigrant high school graduates who face barriers in some states in attending college.
TheDream.US Opportunity Scholarship is the nation’s largest scholarship program for DREAMers – immigrant youth who came to the U.S. without documentation. In most cases, the individuals came to the U.S. with their undocumented parents.
The organization has partnered with Delaware Gov. Jack Markell and Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy and their respective state universities – DSU and Eastern Connecticut State University – to provide scholarship recipients with admissions to institutions of higher education where they can enroll.
The co-founder of TheDream.US is Donald E. Graham, chairman of Graham Holding Company and former CEO and chairman of the Washington Post.
DSU President Harry L. Williams and Graham announced the scholarship partnership during a May 10 event held at DSU. They were joined in the announcement by Delaware Gov. Jack Markell.
“This partnership will add to Delaware State’s incredible legacy of creating new opportunities for students to get a great education and pursue their dreams,” Markell said. “I’m grateful to Don Graham, President Williams, and their teams for their hard work to make this program possible for the deserving scholarship recipients. These students will make Delaware State a stronger institution for everyone and I am thrilled that we are welcoming these talented young people to Delaware.”
TheDream.The US will offer 500 scholarships to DREAMers who live in states that either prohibit them from enrolling in their state universities or make it cost prohibitive by charging them out-of-state tuition. The scholarship recipients will then enroll in DSU, Eastern Connecticut State University or other universities that partner with TheDream.US.
TheDream.US will also offer 100 scholarships to undocumented students who reside in Delaware and Connecticut.
“Education is an American value; we should help every student who has worked hard to go to college,” said Mr. Graham. “TheDream.US Opportunity Scholarship will help immigrant students fulfill their dreams of obtaining a college education so they can better the lives of their families, communities, and our nation. We are proud to be partnering with Delaware State University and Eastern Connecticut State University, with the incredible leadership of Gov. Jack Markell and Gov. Dannel Malloy, to give deserving students the opportunity for an affordable college education.”
The partnership has been established at the same time that DSU is celebrating its 125th anniversary and is consistent with its historic mission, said DSU President Harry L. Williams.
“This exciting partnership with TheDream.US falls right in line with Delaware State University’s mission of providing access and opportunity for diverse populations,” Dr. Williams said. “In addition, this partnership will help the university stay on its current upward trend of growth and sustainability.”
The program has the support of the state’s congressional delegation.
State Rep. Joe Miro, R-Pike Creek, said that the partnership between TheDream.US and Delaware State University to provide private funds is a step in the right direction. “The important issue is that it will open the educational door to students without any cost to the taxpayers of Delaware,” Miro said. “This opportunity will help provide a bright and productive future for these individuals.”