Career Options for Undocumented Students

Why should I go to college if I can’t legally work afterwards?

In California, recent policies passed has provided undocumented students with more resources and opportunities than ever before. Even if you are not able to work legally after graduation, there are still excellent reasons to pursue a college education or go to trade school:

  • After graduation, you can pursue entrepreneurial opportunities by starting your own business or working as an independent contractor. See the sections below for more information on this.
  • If you are able to gain permanent residency later on in your life, earning a college education will ensure you are qualified to seek employment in your desired field.
  • A college education can prepare you to seek employment abroad.

What opportunities are available for me without work authorization?

If you are an undocumented student without work authorization, you will not be able to be hired by a company or organization. However you have other options to generate income that doesn’t require work authorization or a Social Security Number.

Click through the options below to learn more about career alternatives.

Source: This resource guide was prepared using resources from Immigrants Rising. We encourage you to browse through their college and career-readiness resources, specifically made for undocumented students, here. We have also provided links to some of their resources below, under “Keep Learning.”

By Mary Willis
Mary Willis Executive Director