There are many options for helping fund your education at FLHCON. We are committed to reducing the debt burden of our students, so we encourage you to research all your options. We also encourage responsible use of loans to fund educational expenses.
Loans are aid funds that are borrowed and must be repaid at a future date. There are many options for helping fund your education at FLHCON. We are committed to reducing the debt burden of our students, so we encourage you to research all your options. We also encourage responsible use of loans to fund educational expenses.
Federal student loans are considered aid in part because the interest rates are subsidized by the federal government, and except for PLUS loans, a credit check is not required.
Loans at FLHCON are offered through the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program, which issues loans directly from the federal government. Available loans include:
- Federal Direct Stafford Loans
- Federal Direct PLUS Loans
Federal Direct Stafford Loans
Federal Direct Stafford loans are available to students enrolled at least half-time and require no credit check. Just like any other loan, these loans must be repaid with interest. A Direct Stafford loan is federally funded and the interest rate is determined annually by the Department of Education. There are two types of Direct Stafford Loans- Subsidized and Unsubsidized. The Subsidized Direct Stafford Loan is for students who demonstrate financial need. The federal government pays the interest while the student is in school and during authorized periods of deferment. The Unsubsidized Direct Stafford Loan is for students who are not eligible to borrow some or all of the Subsidized Federal Stafford Loan as determined by their financial need. The difference is that the student, rather than the federal government, is responsible for the interest payments while in school, although they may be deferred. The student is required to begin repayment six months after he/she leaves school or drops below six credits.
How to Apply
The first step in applying for any financial aid at FLHCON, including grants and loans, is to complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). Once the FAFSA is received, students will be sent an email directing them to review their Financial Aid Award Letter in Empower and accept or decline their loans. Additionally, students who choose to borrow a loan will need to complete Entrance Counseling, which explains their rights and responsibilities as a loan borrower (or provide proof of prior completion), and a Master Promissory Note (MPN) at www.studentloans.gov.
These steps must be completed before students can receive their first loan disbursement. Federal Direct Stafford borrowers will not receive their loan disbursement until their first day of classes.
Federal Direct PLUS Loans
PLUS loans are federal loans that parents of dependent undergraduate students can use to help pay education expenses. In order to receive a Direct PLUS loan, your child must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The parent must then request a Direct PLUS Loan at StudentLoans.gov. A credit check will be performed during the application process. Contact the financial aid office for additional application requirements.
Private Student Loans
Private Student Loans are available from lenders and credit unions for students whose education expenses have not been met with other financial aid. Private student loans are generally more expensive than Direct Federal Stafford Loans and should only be used when federal loan eligibility has been exhausted. Private student loan programs differ from Direct Federal Stafford Loans and Parent PLUS loans in several important ways:
- Loan approval and interest rate are based on credit approval and approval is not guaranteed
- Loans are not federally guaranteed; therefore, do not have the same deferment, cancellation and consolidation options as Direct Federal Stafford Loans.
FLHCON does not recommend any particular lender, but encourages students to compare lenders and loan terms to select the lender that best fits their needs. Contact each lenders directly for detailed information on individual loan products.