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Federal Direct Student Loans

Through a process called "origination," the University advises the federal government if you are eligible to receive a Direct Student Loan, as well as the amount you are eligible to receive.

Federal Direct Student Loan

  • Student borrows from the U.S. Department of Education.
  • Must be enrolled at least half-time at the point of loan certification and disbursement to receive loan proceeds (half-time is 6 hours for undergraduates and 5 hours for graduates during fall, spring and summer).
  • First-time borrowers are required to complete Entrance Counseling before the loan can be disbursed.  This questionnaire explains the borrower responsibilities and information about different loan types.
  • Students must sign a Master Promissory Note with the Department of Education.
  • NEW!  Annual Student Loan Acknowledgement. The new features provide students, parents, and borrowers with clear, actionable information about the aid they have received and personalized guidance on the loan repayment process.  While available to borrowers as of April 26, the Annual Student Loan Acknowledgement is not required for loans disbursed for the 2020–21 Award Year.
  • Repayment begins six months after graduation or last date of at least half-time enrollment.
  • Borrowers must complete Exit Counseling upon graduation, falling below half-time enrollment, or if you stop attending school.  The exit counseling explains your payment responsibilites and information about payment options.

To learn more about how financial aid works, resources to pay for college, and loan repayment options, visit https://studentaid.gov/.

There are two types: Subsidized and Unsubsidized

Subsidized Loan Unsubsidized Loan
Based on financial need per FAFSA Not based on financial need
Long-term loan with a fixed interest rate of 5.05%.¹ Long-term loan with a fixed interest rate of 5.05% for undergraduate students and 6.60% for graduate students.¹
No interest is charged while in school at least half-time and during grace periods and deferment periods. Interest accrues (accumulates) on an unsubsidized loan from the moment it's first paid to you.²
¹ Interest rates change each school year. 
² You can pay the interest while in school and during grace periods and deferment or forbearance periods, or allow it to accrue and be capitalized (that is, added to the principal amount of the loan). If no payment is made on the interest as it accrues this will increase the total amount you need to repay because interest will be charged on a higher principal amount.
 

Annual and Aggregate Loan Limits

The total amount of Subsidized and Unsubsidized Federal Student Loan cannot exceed the annual and aggregate (total) loan limits as stated in the chart below.

Year Dependent Undergraduate Student Independent Undergraduate Student Graduate and Professional Degree Student
First Year $5,500 - No more than $3,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $9,500 - No more than $3,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $20,500 - Unsubsidized only.
Second Year $6,500 - No more than $4,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $10,500 - No more than $4,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.  
Third and Beyond (each year) $7,500 - No more than $5,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $12,500 - No more than $5,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.  
Maximum Total Debt from Direct Loans when you graduate (aggregate loan limits) $31,000 - No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $57,500 - No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $138,500 - No more than $65,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. The graduate debt limits includes student loans received for undergraduate study.