The University of California Office of the President introduced the California Dream Act Application in an April 9 statement —  an alternative financial aid application option for California students from mixed-status households who have been unable to successfully complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

The office created the California Dream Act Application (CADAA) due to the “logistical challenges” that many students have faced with their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), according to the statement. Students from mixed-status households — who are United States citizens with one or more parents without a Social Security number (SSN) — are eligible to apply for the CADAA.

The CADAA was a joint effort between the UC, the California Student Aid Commission, the California State University and the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office.

“In recent weeks, the U.S. Department of Education has made progress to ensure that the new online FAFSA form is more streamlined for prospective college students who are eligible for federal financial aid. However, students from mixed-status families have faced logistical challenges with the new FAFSA application,” the statement read. 

“Prospective college students still unable to complete the FAFSA will now be able to complete a California Dream Act Application (CADAA) as a short-term measure until they are able to access and complete a FAFSA to receive the federal financial aid available to them.”

The statement said that even with the CADAA, completing the FAFSA remains the most efficient way for students to maximize their financial aid.

“We encourage students to attempt to complete FAFSA first, to ensure that federal aid can be received,” the statement read. “As the state of California continues to find additional opportunities to support students and families navigating the FAFSA’s logistical challenges, mixed-status students must still complete the FAFSA to access their federal financial aid awards, including Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grants, Federal Work-Study, and subsidized federal student loans.”

UC President Michael V. Drake voiced his support for the CADAA in the statement and emphasized the UC’s continued advocacy for expanding access to education for all students.

“The University of California has consistently worked to expand educational access to students of all backgrounds,” Drake said. “Offering robust financial aid and removing barriers for all students to access that support are critically important steps to creating opportunity for Californians. The University will continue to advocate for full access to the FAFSA and all federal financial aid for our students from mixed-status families.”


Alex Levin
Alex Levin (he/him) is the University News Editor for the 2023-24 school year. Previously, Levin was the Assistant News Editor for the 2022-2023 school year. He can be reached at