BC and Y2EL share scholarship programs and more for undocumented students

Jaylene Collins, Features Editor

The Bakersfield College AB 540 and Undocumented Students Program hosted a webinar with Youth 2 Leaders Education Foundation (Y2LEF) sharing financial aid resources for undocumented students at BC on Oct. 21. 

This event was a part of Undocumented Student Action Week, where BC’s Undocumented Students Program hosted webinars and workshops designed for undocumented students going to college. The webinar featured Marcela Gamino (the Program Manager of the AB 540 and Undocumented Students Program), Rafael Centeno (an EOPS Educational Advisor), Jazmin Reyes (Program Coordinator at Y2L), and Jessica Trejo (the Executive Director at Y2LEF). 

Gamino and Centeno opened the webinar by explaining Undocumented Student Action Week and the events they have held. Centeno also provides some resources for scholarships specifically for undocumented students on the BC website and elsewhere.

Reyes then continued by explaining the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), how undocumented students could receive grants, internships, and opportunities they have with Y2LEF. 

Reyes encouraged undocumented students to see if they were eligible for the DACA program, even though DACA was ruled unlawful by a federal judge in July 2021. She said in hopes the ruling will be overturned, Y2L will still help those prepare their applications.

The CA Dream Act Service Incentive Grant Program was then introduced by Reyes. The grant allows students who receive Cal Grant B to earn $3,000 in an academic year if they also do volunteer work. Reyes encouraged those eligible to apply.

Reyes told students to seek out any scholarships and internships they find and those provided during the event. Reyes stated Y2LEF also has scholarships, internships, independent contracting, and volunteer opportunities available for students. She stated that Y2LEF was able to grant every student that applied for their scholarships funds since not many students applied. 

Reyes encouraged students to apply for scholarships they see because they will never know if they are able to receive the scholarship unless they try. 

Some resources mentioned in the webinar were: immigrantsrising.org, https://www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/finaid/scholarships, bakersfieldcollege.fi

naidformstack.com, and https://bakersfieldcollegefinaid.formstack.com/forms/recovery

To get in touch with Y2LEF, visit www.y2lef.org or call (661)374-8817.