Students that complete the FAFSA are eligible to apply for the Federal Student Direct Loan or a parent may apply for the Federal Parent PLUS Loan. While loans can be helpful, there is a lot of important information you should know before embarking on the loan process. Understanding the risks, benefits, and how to navigate the loan waters by reading the PDF below.
Loan Counseling: Federal regulation requires that students who take out a Federal Student Loan complete both an entrance and exit loan counseling. The entrance counseling must be completed before any loan disursements can be credited to the student’s account. The exit counseling serves to inform students abou repayment of their loan. If loan repayment is not managed properly, the student can go into defult which will affect their credit rating, eligibility for further financial aid, and may result in garnishment of wages and future tax refunds. These counseling sessions inform the student of his/her rights and responsibilities as a borrower.
Federal PLUS Loans
The Federal PLUS Loan is a parent loan. If you are a dependent undergraduate student and your parents have an acceptable credit history, they can take out a PLUS Loan which allows them to borrow as much as needed to cover the cost of any education related expenses. Your parents must complete a Federal PLUS Loan Master Promissory Note.
Federal Student Loans
The Federal Student Loan is a student loan. If you are a dependent undergraduate student (Dependency status is determined by the FAFSA), you can borrow up to:
$5,500 if you are a freshman
$6,500 if you are a sophomore
If you are an independent undergraduate student or a dependent student whose parents have applied for but were denied a PLUS Loan (a parent loan), you can borrow up to:
$9,500 if you are a freshman
$10,500 if you are a sophomore
To apply, you must complete and sign a Federal Student Loan Master Promissory Note. Loans must be repaid. Our office will provide you with instructions for completing the Master Promissory Note. Please check with the Financial Aid Office prior to completing loan applications from other sources.
We are not offered any financial incentive from the institutions providing these loans.
We do not accept gifts or gratuities from the institutions providing these loans.
We have not entered into any promise or concession to these lenders for any reason.
In respect to private education lending; our staff is prohibited from accepting outside compensation for consulting or other services to a lender such as serving on an advisory board, commission or group.
Wells Fargo and Sallie Mae offer a private student loan program to students that have outstanding financial need. A private student loan is similar in many ways to the Federal Student Loan with a few exceptions:
Once approved the only limit on the amount the student may borrow is the schools determination of Cost of Attendance. (Student Loans have limits)
Generally, students will need an eligible cosigner to be approved regardless of age, income or prior credit history.
The lender does not have the same assurances from the government that the Student Loan does, therefore this loan will have a higher interest rate due to the increased risk. Students should exhaust their Student eligibility and use this as a loan for their remaining unmet need.