Removing Barriers: Expanding In-State Tuition for Dreamers in South Carolina

Date of Publication: 
April, 2019
Source Organization: 
New American Economy

Employers and communities across South Carolina are facing critical worker shortages with no end in sight. In fact, the state’s unemployment rate of 3.2 percent ranks below the national average. It is imperative that state policies leverage local talent toward a robust workforce by ensuring that every graduate of South Carolina’s high schools can access higher education, regardless of where they were born.

Granting access to in-state tuition for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients is an important step toward meeting this need and would greatly benefit the state’s economy. These students, South Carolinians who have grown up in and graduated from the state’s high schools, are currently ineligible to pay the in-state tuition rate at South Carolina’s public colleges and universities. That rate is, on average, two to four times less expensive than the out-of-state rate—putting the cost of higher education out of reach for many of them. Expanding in-state tuition access South Carolina’s DACA students would translate into millions of dollars that benefit all South Carolina residents.

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New American Economy. (2019). Removing Barriers: Expanding In-State Tuition for Dreamers in South Carolina. Retrieved from