Screenshot of the studentloans.gov portal

Most students find it necessary to finance a portion of their education with student loans. Loans, unlike grants and student employment, are borrowed money that must be repaid with interest. Detailed information, eligibility requirements, and borrower responsibilities should be reviewed prior to borrowing.

  • Federal Direct Student Loan

    Federal Direct Loans are available to undergraduate students who are enrolled at least half-time. Before a student can borrow a loan, the student must apply for financial aid by completing a FAFSA application. Eligibility for the programs below will be determined by the Office of Financial Aid and indicated on your Financial Aid Award letter. Remember you can borrow less than is offered to you. You should only borrow what you need!

    Interest Rates

    Loans Disbursed between July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018 July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019
    Direct Loan (subsidized/unsubsidized) Interest rate 4.45% 5.045%
    • The Subsidized Federal Direct Loan is available to students who demonstrate financial need. The interest is paid (subsidized) by the federal government while the student is enrolled in school at least half-time in school and during the six-month grace period after the student ceases to be enrolled at least half-time. Subsidized loans have a lifetime aggregate loan limit of $23,000.
    • The Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan is available to students who do not demonstrate financial need, or whose financial need has been met by other resources (e.g., grants and scholarships). The student is responsible for the interest that accrues on the unsubsidized loan during enrollment, grace, and repayment periods.
    • Federal student loans require the student to complete an entrance counseling and a Master Promissory Note before the loans can be disbursed. Both can be completed at studentloans.gov.
    • Federal Loan Fees: 1.066% of the loan amount is deducted from the Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized loans prior to disbursement to your student account for loans disbursed prior to October 1, 2018.

    Maximum Annual Federal Direct Loan Limits*

    Grade Level Dependent Independent
    First-Year Students $3,500 $7,500
    Sophomores $4,500 $8,500
    Juniors/Seniors $5,500 $10,500

    * These loan limits include both subsidized and unsubsidized amounts and cannot exceed your cost of attendance minus other financial aid.

    Maximum Cumulative Federal Direct Loan Limits

    The maximum cumulative (aggregate)loan for dependent students subsidized and unsubsidized loan amount is $31,000 (no more than $23,000 of which may be in Subsidized loans). Independent students is $57,500 (no more than $23,000 of which may be in Subsidized loans).

    To complete the complete the process for Federal Direct Loans, you must complete

    Master Promissory Note (MPN) : The MPN is a legal document in which you promise to repay your loans(s) and any accrued interest and fees to the Federal Department of Education. It also explains the terms and conditions of your loan. You sign the MPN once, the first time you borrow. This will allow you to borrow more from the same loan source while you are in school, without having to sign a promissory note each year.

    Entrance Counseling: The entrance counseling provides you with information on:

    • Your rights and responsibilities as a borrower
    • Who to contact with questions
    • Interest rates, expenses, repayment plans, and other important details about borrowing
  • Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)

    Parents/Step-parents of dependent students can apply for a Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS). The PLUS loan allows parents to borrow up to the cost of attendance, less any other financial aid. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education. A 4.264% fee for the Direct Parent Loan will be deducted prior to disbursement to your student account for loans disbursed prior to October 1, 2018.

    Disbursed between: July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018 July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019
    PLUS Loan Interest Rate 7.00% 7.595%

    Eligibility Requirements

    • Parent of dependent student who is enrolled at least half-time in a degree-seeking program and be meeting satisfactory academic progress
    • Parent cannot have an adverse credit history
      (a credit check will be done)
    • Student and parent must be U.S. citizens or eligible non-citizens and must meet general eligibility requirements for Federal Student Aid programs
    • Parent must not be in default on any federal education loans or owe an overpayment on a federal education grant

    Parents can go online and complete a PLUS loan application and, upon approval, complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN) by following the instructions below. Loan Counseling may also be required.

    A parent FSA ID is required. If you signed the FAFSA electronically for your son or daughter you were assigned one at that time. Parents can request an FSA ID at www.fsaid.ed.gov.

    Step 1: Go to studentloans.gov
    Step 2: Sign in with your FSA ID and click Apply for a Direct PLUS Loan
    Step 3: Start PLUS Application

    PLUS Loan funds are disbursed directly to the student account in two equal installments. If the Parent Borrower selects an unknown loan amount on the Parent PLUS Loan application, and does not reach out to the Financial Aid Office to select an amount, the loan will automatically be certified up to the student’s Cost of Attendance. Repayment begins after the full amount for the academic year has been disbursed. Disbursement dates will be stated on the Disclosure Statement sent to the borrower from the Direct Loan Servicing Center. Parents may choose to defer payments until six months after the student ceases to be enrolled at least half-time.

    If the PLUS Loan is denied, the student may be eligible for additional Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan. A written request must be made to the Financial Aid Office.

  • Alternative Student Loans

    The National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS)

    The NSLDS is an online central database that keeps track of all federal student loans. Perkins Loan and Pell Grant information may also be viewed via this Website. Loan information is transmitted to NSLDS from schools, lenders, and loan servicers. All information viewed is private and secure, and can only be accessed using a student's social security number, first two letters of last name, date of birth and FAFSA PIN.

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