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DACA: What You Need to Know

Current Legal Status:
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA) remains in effect

Background Info

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program or DACA was originally established in 2012 by a memorandum under the Obama administration to protect young adults who were brought to the United States as children from deportation. Under the program, eligible DACA recipients could remain in the US without fear of deportation, further their education, and apply for work permits.

Since 2017 there have been numerous lawsuits and court decisions that have affected DACA, although the program remains in effect.

DACA Program Updates

On July 16, 2021, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas ruled that DACA cannot continue under the original 2012 Department of Homeland Security memorandum. In response, DHS attempted to create a formal federal rule to continue DACA instead. On September 13, 2023, the District Court held that DACA cannot continue under this federal rule either. The District Court temporarily stayed its orders – preventing them from going into full effect – with regard to individuals who obtained DACA on or before July 16, 2021, including those with renewal requests.

As a result, DHS will accept and process renewal DACA requests, including renewal requests submitted after a recipient’s DACA status expired if submitted within 1 year of expiration. DHS will accept, but will not process, new DACA requests.

For more information, the Supplemental Order of Injunction is available online.

What This Means for DACA Recipients

DREAM Scholars

The Center for Student Empowerment Supports Undocumented Students

The Center for Student Empowerment (CSE) compliments the larger mission of the University of Houston by expanding opportunities for the university's diverse student population by preventing minor obstacles from becoming major setbacks to degree achievement for all students.

The priority at CSE is to help students thrive by offering a variety of services that students need to get the most out of their college experience and prepare for a successful future. One of our many goals is to expand opportunities for all students, including DACA and undocumented students, by providing the support they need to achieve the social and economic mobility they desire. The multifaceted components of our program promote scholarship, community service, and personal and professional development by offering a holistic approach to advising.

Services Available

  • Support transitioning for high school to college
  • TASFA assistance
  • Scholarship assistance
  • Financial advising
  • Academic planning and support
  • Career counseling
  • Monitoring to ensure academic success

Visit or call our office to schedule an appointment and learn how CSE can support your continued education! For more information visit

4365 Cougar Village Dr.
Houston, TX 77204-3017
Student Service Center 1, Bldg. 524, Room 302
Phone: (713) 743-6032

Outside Resources That May Be Helpful

Individuals who believe that they are eligible to submit a new application or to renew their existing DACA status should seek advice from an immigration lawyer or legal clinic.

The UH Law Center Immigration Clinic is available to University of Houston System students from all of our campuses who need a free intake consultation. Appointments can be scheduled by calling the clinic's main number at (713) 743-2094. Be sure to indicate you are a student with the UH System and ask for an intake consultation.

The University of Houston is proud of its diverse and inclusive community. The University of Houston will continue to support the efforts of all its students to further their academic studies and will continue to follow state and federal laws as it works to provide educational opportunities for its students. In compliance with those laws, UH does not ask about the immigration status of any student or applicant. Immigration status is not determinative of eligibility for admission or certain forms of financial aid.