Big Change in Student Loans for Graduate Students:
Due to the Budget Control Act of 2011, there are important changes to be aware of :
(All have an effective date of July 1, 2012)
1. Elimination of the Subsidized Direct Loan for graduate students.
2. Elimination of the 1/2% upfront rebate.
3. Elimination of 1/4% interest rate reduction for auto debit in repayment.
To complete any of the PDF-fillable forms, please use only the free Adobe Reader
Check out these useful articles published by the Journal of Lutheran Ethics about finances in our times.
While we at LSTC are part of the William D. Ford Direct Loan Program, we work with students to help them seek other sources of funding first, which in many cases make loans unnecessary. In the case that a student has exhausted all other forms of assistance, he or she can turn to low-interest, long-term student loans. Borrowing from this source, even at the favorable terms currently available, should be planned carefully in order to avoid the accumulation of unmanageable debt. Graduate Plus and Alternative/private loans should be considered only after applying for Federal Direct Stafford Unsubsidized loans.
Below you will find important information and links to start the process of obtaining a student loan and student loan repayment. If you have any questions, please contact Kate Fitzkappes, assistant director of financial aid at 773-256-0726 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Steps to Acquiring a Student Loan
If you are planning to pay a portion of your educational expenses with student loans, you are required to complete each of the following steps:
**Please note that all communication from the LSTC Financial Aid Office regarding your student loans will go to your LSTC email account unless you request otherwise.**
- Complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid): www.fafsa.ed.gov (LSTC School Code: G01712)
- Complete a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note: www.studentloans.gov
The MPN is a promissory note that can be used to make one or more loans for one or more academic years (up to 10 years). Therefore, if you already have already completed an online MPN for the Direct Loan program, you do not need to complete another one. The electronic MPN site allows you to complete and sign an MPN over the web as an alternative to using a paper MPN. The process for completing an electronic MPN is simple. You will need to have your Department of Education issued PIN to begin the process(same as your FAFSA pin). If you do not have your PIN, please visit the official PIN site (www.pin.ed.gov) to sign up for a PIN. You will also need certain hardware and software to complete the process; the instructions are available on the promissory note web page listed above. Please note that if, in addition to an Unsubsidized Loan, a Graduate Plus loan should be needed, and you meet the eligibility requirements, you must fill out a separate Graduate Plus Master Promissory Note
- Complete online Student Loan Counseling at www.studentloans.gov
LSTC requires Entrance Counseling the first semester you complete a student loan at LSTC. Exit Counseling is required each Spring. If graduating or leaving school in the Fall, you must complete Exit Counseling at that time. Completing Exit counseling will not put your student loans into repayment. We require Exit Counseling each Spring in order to help encourage awareness regarding what your student loan repayment will be like once you graduate, whenever that may be. These quick and easy interactive counseling sessions provide useful tips and tools to help you develop a budget for managing your educational expenses and helps you to understand your loan responsibilities.
- Complete the Direct Loan Eligibility Form (fillable online by clicking on the live link)
All students are encouraged to first apply for LSTC's need-based grants and secure other sources of financial aid before applying for student loan money. Once you have competed the form please e-mail to email@example.com
After completing steps 1 through 4 above
You will receive an email confirmation from the LSTC Financial Aid office that your loan has been certified. If there is any question as to your eligibility we will contact you via email. Please note that all communication regarding your loans will go to your LSTC email account.
If you have received an email notification that your loan has been certified, you can expect to receive a second email notification at the time your student loan money has been disbursed and put into your LSTC account.
If there is a balance left in your account after your LSTC Tuition, fees, student insurance, and rent charges have been paid for the semester, you may request that money by completing the Student Disbursement Request Form-PDF and submitting it in-person or via email (Student Disbursement Request Form-word document) to the Finance Department, care of Carmen Rollins firstname.lastname@example.org. If you need assistance in filling out the form please contact the Finance Office or the Financial Aid Office.
Student Loan Resources
This web site is your source of information from the U.S. Department of Education on how to manage your student loans. You can research the Direct Loan program starting with how to obtain a loan all the way to the repayment process. There are several links to helpful information and resources regarding the decisions you need to make when managing your loans.
You can use the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) web site to make inquiries about your Title IV loans and/or grants. The site displays information on loan and/or grant amounts, outstanding balances, loan statuses, and disbursements. In order to use the NSLDS Student Access web site, you will need to provide your Social Security number (SSN), the first two letters of your last name, your date of birth, and your PIN (formerly known as EAC).
The federal government now offers several repayment plans. If you qualify, these programs could reduce your loan payments. We encourage you to consult the following resources the semester before you graduate or leave school to determine your repayment options.
Call Direct Loan Borrower Services (1-800-848-0979) and your current Loan Servicer (if they are different) to ask about your options. Follow this link for a list of servicer help lines and websites.
The link above provides specific information about Income Based Repayment and Public Service Loan Forgiveness.
FinAid is a web site with a wealth of information on scholarships, grants and student loans. The link above will connect you to a variety of calculators such as: College Cost Projector, Savings Plan Designer (Flat Contribution), Expected Family Contribution and Financial Aid Calculator and Loan Calculator.
IBRinfo was created by the nonprofit, nonpartisan Project on Student Debt to help student loan borrowers learn about two new federal loan programs: Income-Based Repayment (IBR) and Public Service Loan Forgiveness. While this site does not provide advice about your individual financial situation, the Frequently Asked Questions page provides answers to commonly asked questions as well as links to other resources that could help you. To see if you might qualify for IBR and what your monthly payment might be, please visit the IBR calculator.