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Jeff Bezos contributes $33 million to Dreamers scholarship program

13 January 2018

Their grant will fund 1,000 college scholarships for USA high school graduates enrolled in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, known as DACA. According to the organization, the donation will allow 1,000 undocumented immigrant graduates of us high schools with DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) status the opportunity to attend college.

As the "Dreamers" as they're known, are illegal immigrants, they are not eligible to receive financial aid from the federal government, TheDream.US aims to offer these students up to $33,000 in financial aid spread over four years of college study.

Mike and Jackie Bezos (parents of Jeff) are also among the early donors to TheDream.US., as is The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. "We're a three-and-a-half-year-old program, so we don't yet have graduation rates", said Candy Marshall, president of TheDream.US. 2,850 students are now enrolled in college under the program. The move by Bezos move comes as the White House rejected a bipartisan deal to keep them in the country.

"My dad came to the USA when he was 16 as part of Operation Pedro Pan", Bezos said.

Dreamers are now ineligible for federal grants and loans and receive no state tuition aid in 44 states. "My dad became an outstanding citizen, and he continues to give back to the country that he feels blessed him in so many ways", Bezos said.

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On Monday, Bezos dethroned Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates of the world's richest person title with a net worth of $108 billion, compared to Gates's net worth of $93.8 billion, according to Bloomberg's Billionaire Index. "MacKenzie and I are honored to be able to help today's Dreamers by funding these scholarships", he said.

The money will help fund 1,000 college scholarships and is the largest donation yet to a fund established by Donald Graham, the former publisher of The Post who sold the company to Bezos in 2013. They also must pay out-of-state or worldwide tuition, which often more than three times in-state tuition in more than 15 states.

"It helps others in a position to act (like members of Congress) to see the commitment of people in this country to let Dreamers work here and have access to an education", she said.

In 2015, Mark Zuckerberg gave $5 million to TheDream.US to fund college scholarships.

Jeff Bezos contributes $33 million to Dreamers scholarship program