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Mississippi Policy

Updated As Of: April 4, 2017

Mississippi does not provide in-state tuition to undocumented students. DACA residents can qualify for in-state tuition at community colleges.
  • HB 88, introduced in 2006, would have extended in-state tuition eligibility to undocumented students.
  • HB 101, introduced in 2005, would have extended in-state tuition eligibility to undocumented students.
  • HB 445 was introduced in 2012. If passed, it would have extended in-state tuition eligibility to undocumented students, but it died in committee.
  • HB 212 was introduced in January 2017. If passed, it will provide in-state tuition to undocumented students if they have resided in Mississippi for 5 years, filed Mississippi state taxes for at least one year before enrolling, filed an affidavit to confirm they are not in removal proceedings, and will file a petition to become a permanent resident.
  • HB 488, introduced in 2012, would have required all state agencies to fully cooperate with enforcement of federal immigration laws if passed.
  • SB 2988, passed in 2008, requires all workers to be verified as legal citizens or immigrants through the status verification system.
  • HB 600, introduced on January 8, 2017, would have prevented universities from becoming sanctuary campuses, and undocumented students would be denied admission to universities and not be eligible for any sort of financial aid. This bill failed on January 31 2017.

Federal law has been unsuccessful at addressing comprehensive access to postsecondary education for undocumented students. Despite efforts to pass the DREAM Act and comprehensive immigration reform, Congress has not addressed the current ambiguous language in IIRIRA regarding undocumented students' eligibility for educational benefits (i.e. in-state tuition and state-funded financial aid programs). Therefore, much of the policy activity regarding postsecondary access for undocumented students has shifted to state and system levels. As a result, state policymakers and higher education institutions take varied approaches to either broadening or restricting access to postsecondary education and educational benefits. Others states have yet to take formal action on this issue, leaving the decision to individual campus leaders.

Under the provisions of this ambiguous policy context, undocumented youth encounter contentious environments with policies that range from inclusive, restrictive, or unstipulated stances.

Inclusive: States with policies that explicitly grant in-state tuition and/or eligibility for public financial aid for undocumented students.

Restrictive: States with policies that explicitly deny eligibility for admission and/or in-state tuition for undocumented students.

Unstipulated: States that do not have stated policies that explicitly address undocumented student access to postsecondary education.

State and system policies are volatile and continuously changing. For the latest, please visit the uLEAD NewsdeskFor information specific to individual state context, click in the subheadings below.

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