New state law will make it easier for trans students to get financial aid

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A non-binary student taking notes in class.(Photo by Zackary Drucker as part of Broadly's Gender Spectrum Collection)

SPRINGFIELD — A law going into effect will make it easier for undocumented and trangender students to get financial aid in Illinois.

WREX, a Rockford NBC affiliate, reported that undocumented students and transgender students who are disqualified from federal financial aid will now be able to apply for all forms of state financial aid.

“I’m committed to expanding college affordability for every student in Illinois because it’s a common sense investment in our future with more students attending college here, there will be more opportunities to create good jobs, to keep talent in Illinois and to grow our economy for everyone,” said Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker, according to the TV station. “After years of college students choosing to leave Illinois, we’re turning the page to a new era to make our schools more affordable for all students by increasing funding for MAP grants, AIM HIGH scholarships, and increasing funding for our schools.”

Students can use the pre-screening questions on the Alternative Application to determine whether they should complete the new application or the FAFSA, WREX reported.

The law, the Retain Illinois Students and Equity (RISE) Act, was passed last spring and signed into law last June.

Interested students can contact their school guidance counselor financial aid office to find out which application to use.

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