Press conference, information forum on REAL Hope Act at Heritage University
Undocumented Students Qualify for State Financial Aid
Toppenish, WA — On February 26, 2014, Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed into law SB 6523, the Real Hope Act, previously known as the Washington DREAM Act (under House Bill 1817).
On Thursday, March 13, 2014, a press conference and informational forum will be held at Heritage University regarding the new law:
Press Conference: 11:00 am – Heritage University Community Training & Business Center, Rm. 2214, 3240 Fort Road • Toppenish, WA 98948
Participants: Dr. John Bassett, Heritage University; Steve Myers, ESD 105; Kevin Chase, Superintendent, Grandview School District, Ricardo Sanchez, Founder, Latino/a Educational Achievement Project (LEAP)
Informational Forum: 3:00 pm – Heritage University Dining Hall, Building 3400
Presenters: Becky Thompson, Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC); Rachelle Sharpe, WSAC; Ricardo Sanchez, LEAP
Beginning as early as April 1, 2014, the REAL Hope Act will enable undocumented students to apply for state-funded financial aid for college. Funds could be used for fall quarter 2014. The Senate added $5 million to the State Need Grant to expand service to additional students.
Aid recipients must meet provisions of HB 1079, approved in 2003 by the state Legislature, which allows undocumented students to pay in-state tuition at Washington public colleges and universities. The new pool of recipients also must meet the state’s low-income guidelines all other students must meet to qualify for public financial aid funds.
“Ultimately, we see the Real Hope Act as the unlocking of hope, aspirations, and improved academic achievement for many, many students in our state,” said Ricardo Sánchez, founder of the Latino/a Educational Achievement Project (LEAP). “This will give many students here in Yakima and the Yakima Valley the means to repay the substantial investment made in their K-12 education. Many will obtain college degrees and work as professional teachers, lawyers, doctors, engineers, or work in other professional and trades occupations.”
Sponsors of the informational forum are Educational Service District 105, Latino/a Educational Achievement Project, Washington Student Achievement Council, and Heritage University.
For press conference information, contact:
David Mance, Media Relations Coordinator, Heritage University, (509) 969-6084 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information, contact:
Ricardo Sanchez, LEAP, LEAP@seamarchc.org
Steve Myers, ESD 105 Superintendent, email@example.com.
Becky Thompson, WSAC, firstname.lastname@example.org
About LEAP: LEAP is a program of Sea Mar Community Health Centers, a non-profit health and human service organization serving ten counties in Washington state, including Yakima County.
About ESD 105: Educational Service District 105 supports the learning success of more than 60,000 students who attend the 25 public school districts and 23 state-approved private and tribal schools we serve in South Central Washington.
About WSAC: Established as a new cabinet-level state agency on July 1, 2012, the Washington Student Achievement Council provides strategic planning, oversight, and advocacy to support increased student success and higher levels of educational attainment in Washington.