Education loans help students and parents finance education costs, making payments more manageable. Grants do not need to be repaid.

Federal loans and grants

Federal educational loans must be repaid once a student is no longer enrolled at least half time.

Perkins Loan

Guaranteed student loan – meaning no credit review required, based on need. Interest rate is fixed. Repayment begins nine months after recipient ceases to be enrolled.  Available to full-time undergraduate students during their senior year based on eligibility requirements.

Federal Direct Student Loans

Available for eligible students taking at least six credits in coursework that counts toward their degree program.  Not based on credit review.  There are two types: Subsidized and Unsubsidized.  The subsidized is need-based and the U.S. Department of Education pays the interest while the student is enrolled at least half-time. Unsubsidized is not need-based and the interest is accruing from the start of the loan while in school.

Federal Direct Grad PLUS Loan

Available to eligible graduate students only taking at least six credits in coursework that counts toward their degree program. Fixed rate, credit review is required.

Federal Direct Plus Loan

For parent of dependent student enrolled in an undergraduate program at least half time. PLUS loan, fixed interest, repayment starts 60 days after full disbursement.

Alternative student loans

Obtaining a private loan in the students’ name is based on a credit review. Many times a co-signer is needed. Contact the lender of choice to initiate this type of loan. Alternative loans should only be used as a last resort after exploring all other financial aid options.

Federal Grants

Pell Grants and Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG) may be available to students, based on availability of funds. Both of these grants are based on need.

Pell Grant

A Federal Pell Grant does not have to be repaid. Federal Pell Grants are awarded to undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor’s or professional degree. In some cases, a student enrolled in a post-baccalaureate teacher certification program might receive a Federal Pell Grant.

The maximum Federal Pell Grant award is for the 2014–15 award year (July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2015) is $5,730. The amount you get, though, will depend on

  • Your financial need,
  • Your cost of attendance,
  • Your status as a full-time or part-time student, and
  • Your plans to attend school for a full academic year or less.

Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)

Provides undergraduate students in need with awards ranging from $100 to $4,000.