Unlike grants or scholarships, money borrowed by students or parents must be repaid with interest, usually after you are finished with your education. Federal student loans are an investment in your future. If you do decide to take out a loan, make sure you understand who is committing to the loan – whether it is you or your parent or guardian - and the terms and conditions of the loan.
By submitting the FAFSA, your college’s financial aid award package is required by the U.S. Department of Education to include an offer of federal student loans. Garrett College does not encourage borrowing, but encourages smart borrowing and additional steps are required for student loan processing.
The U.S. Department of Education’s federal student loan program is the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program. Under this program, the U.S. Department of Education is your lender.
How much can I borrow for college?
|Year||Dependent Undergraduate students||Independent Undergraduate students|
|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.|
|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.|
Subsidized vs. Unsubsidized Loans – Know the Difference!
Direct Subsidized Loans are available to eligible undergraduate students who demonstrate financial need to help cover the costs of college. For these loans, the government does pay interest while you are still in school.
Direct Unsubsidized Loans are available to eligible undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. These are non-need based and the government does not pay interest while you are in school.
Direct PLUS Loans are available to parents of dependent undergraduate students to help pay for education expenses not covered by any other form of financial aid. Eligibility is not based on financial need, but a credit check is required. Borrowers who have an adverse credit history must meet additional requirements to qualify.
Private Educational (Alternative) Loans
Private education loans are non-federal loans you borrow from a lender such as a bank, credit union, or state agency. Private loans require that you apply for and get approved for these loans, unlike Federal Student Loans. Private Loans provide students and family another borrowing option and should be considered as a “last resort” lending option.
The private loan amount you can borrow will depend on your Cost of Attendance and the amount of other aid you’ve been offered. We recommend that you start with federal student loans due to the benefits they offer and compare the difference between federal and private loans.
If would like to add a private loan to your federal student aid award you can visit Credible. Credible is the only student loan comparison tool that enables students and parents to compare unbiased, personalized and prequalified rates with no hidden fees and no impact to their credit. Credible is not a lender or a bank, we simply partner with the top student loan providers to offer a variety of competitive options. When considering a private student loan, it's important to compare rates, terms and repayment options across multiple lenders to ensure you get a loan that fits your financial situation. Credible is free to use and your information will remain secure. Credible is an online tool that allows students to compare personalized loans from multiple lenders. Students can analyze pre-qualified rates, terms, and eligibility rules side-by-side in just a matter of minutes. Credible is not a lender or bank. Credible partners with private lenders so that applicants have a variety of competitive options, each addressing their particular needs.
Note: Garrett College does not endorse, recommend or promote any lender for private loans; additionally Garrett College does not and cannot recommend specific lenders. The listing shown on Credible are not preferred lender lists, nor do they represent every lender that provides private education loans. Student may and can choose to use a loan provider that does not appear in the list of lenders included in the link above.
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You can apply for Financial Aid at any time. GC encourages you to submit your FAFSA when it first becomes available on October 1 of each year.