There's a new restriction in place on financial aid for Oklahoma college students who are not American citizens. They're most often the children of illegal immigrants, who qualify for entry into college by graduating from an Oklahoma high school. The News On 6's Emory Bryan reports the Oklahoma Regents for Higher Education on Thursday voted to cut off financial aid for a very small group of students: only the ones who are not citizens and are not trying to become citizens.
It's a reaction to the new state law on immigrants (House Bill 1804) that takes effect next week.
There were 244 students who fell into the "undocumented students" category last year, who altogether were given $112,000 in state financial aid. That's one-tenth of 1% of the financial aid budget.
There was an attempt back in April to make these students pay tuition as if they were from out of state, but a Senate committee in the legislature decided that students who had lived in Oklahoma for at least two years, who graduate, should qualify for the same benefits as other Oklahomans.
Thursday's vote by the regents means as long as they are working on the process, immigrant students can still get financial aid and qualify for in-state tuition rates.
Originally aired 10/25/2007 12:41 PM - Updated 10/25/2007 10:13 PM