Middle Class Scholarship

What is a Middle Class Scholarship?

The Middle Class Scholarship (MCS) is a tuition scholarship to assist students in paying for part of their tuition fees at a University of California (UC) or California State University (CSU). Students who receive a grant that pays for tuition are not eligible for the MCS program. The Middle Class Scholarship (MCS) is available to eligible undergraduate and teaching credential students attending a University of California (UC) or California State University (CSU). Students must meet all eligibility criteria and have family income and assets not exceeding $165,000.

How to Apply

Beginning on October 1st, students may complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at fafsa.gov or the California Dream Act Application (CADAA) at caldreamact.org. Use the California Dream Act Application if you do not have a Social Security number (SSN) or if you were approved for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Make sure your email address is listed on your FAFSA or CADAA. The deadline to apply is March 2nd. After you have submitted your FAFSA or CADAA establish a webgrants4students.org account to monitor your state financial aid. Students whose families earn up to $165,000 per year may be eligible for a scholarship of no less than 10% and no more than 40% of the mandatory system-wide tuition and fees at the University of California and the California State University.

Eligibility Requirements

The Middle Class Scholarship is for eligible families with income and assets of up to $165,000

  1. Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADAA) by March 2nd
  2. Attends a University of California (UC) or California State University (CSU)
  3. Be a California resident attending a UC or CSU
  4. Be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or have *AB 540 student status
  5. Meet certain income/asset and other financial aid standards
  6. Maintain satisfactory academic progress; not be in default on a student loan
  7. Not be incarcerated
  8. Be enrolled in 6 or more units
  9. AB 540 students are subject to the following qualifications (#10-15):

  10. Attend a California high school for a minimum of 3 years or
  11. Attain credits equivalent to 3 or more years of high school coursework and
  12. Have a combination of 3 or more years at a California elementary or secondary school as set forth in AB 2000
  13. Graduate from a California high school or pass the California High School Proficiency Exam (CHSPE) or get a General Equivalency Diploma (GED)
  14. Enroll in an accredited and qualified California college or university
  15. If applicable, fill out an affidavit stating your intent to legalize your immigration status as soon as possible.

Scholarship Award Amounts

The award amount is no less than 10% and no more than 40% of System-wide Tuition and Fees.

Below is a chart of what CSUF Office of Financial Aid had awarded to eligible students.

Academic Year Minimum Award Maximum Award
2016 - 2017 $ 45/semester $921/semester
2017 - 2018 $ 45/semester $1,149/semester

How are the scholarship amounts determined?

MCS scholarships are not set amounts and may vary by student and institution. The award amount is determined after you are awarded any federal, state, and institutional need-based grants for which you are eligible. The final award amount will be based on the number of students eligible for the MCS statewide and the funding allocated by the State Budget.

To get assistance completing the FAFSA or CADAA, attend a Cash for College workshop in your community beginning on October 1st but before the March 2nd application deadline. Students must reapply each year. Visit   cash4college.org   or download our mobile app at   mobilegallery.ca.gov   for workshop locations. If you are selected to receive a MCS, the California Student Aid Commission will notify you. If you need more information about this scholarship, contact your UC or CSU campus Financial Aid Office or check your   webgrants4students.org   account.

When will MCS Be Awarded and Disbursed?

Awards will be awarded and disbursed after census date. Final enrollment for a semester is measured at University Census, (the last day of the add period, which typically occurs on the fourth Friday of the semester).

Awards will be delayed 'IF'

  • The student’s enrollment changes from Full-time to Part-time (All awards are based on Full-Time status)
  • There is a change on the original FAFSA application that was used to determine eligibility
  • The student is here for one semester (Fall only) or (Spring only)
  • Process can take 2-6 weeks to make adjustments on webgrants and award the student.