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Dozens of undocumented students start at DSU

Mark Arehart
Delaware Public Media
The DREAMer scholarship students pose on the Delaware State Campus.

For many undocumented students, a college education can be out of reach. But for few dozen undocumented freshman at Delaware State University, the thought of higher education is now more than just a dream.

DSU is partnering with TheDream.US scholarship fund to make college a reality for 34 undocumented students starting this semester.

Speaking on the DSU Campus, Governor Jack Markell said the DREAMer scholarship helps students who can’t qualify for student aid and are often locked out of their state schools.

"You know our country is built on giving people a chance. It’s a country of immigrants. When immigrants have an opportunity to work hard and make the best of it for them and their families, it really helps the whole country," Markell said.


Muhammed Jah, originally from Gambia, West Africa, came to DSU from Georgia.

He says back home he didn’t have much of an opportunity for higher education.


“Well I’m from Atlanta, and it’s a lockout state. So I had no financial aid to attend college or community college and all the schools that I applied to denied me. So when I heard about the scholarship, I jumped right on it. And now look, I’ve got a full ride to come here," Jah said.

The DREAMer students are originally from Mexico, Central and South America, though a handful like Jah are from Africa. Many have spent most of their lives in states like North Carolina, Mississippi, New York, Arkansas and Idaho.
This is the first year DREAMer scholarship students are attending DSU. The school expects to add 20-70 students each year.

The undocumented students are majoring in everything from Political Science, to Engineering, Education and Aviation Management.

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