Alternative Loans

About Alternative Loans

  • It is strongly encouraged that the student uses all available Federal Loan programs before considering a private/alternate loan.
  • Alternative loans are available to students who need more financial resources to meet educational expenses including tuition, computers, and tools not covered by financial aid.
  • The amount a student can borrow is determined by the following:
    • Cost of Attendance minus Grants, Federal Loans, Scholarships, Other Resources = Alternative Loan Amount
    • To be eligible for an alternative loan the applicant must satisfy the following requirements:
      • U.S. citizenship or eligibility as a non-citizen.
      • Enrolled at least half-time in a certificate or undergraduate degree program.
      • Applicant must be creditworthy or have a creditworthy cosigner
      • Satisfactory Academic Progress
      • Below is a chart comparing Federal and Private Education Loans:
  Federal Loans Private Loans
Co-signer Requirement No Yes
Credit Check Requirement Perkins/Stafford-No
PLUS-Yes (however, debt to income ratio not included)
Deferment Yes Depends on loan, but generally yes
Grace Period Perkins- 9 months
Stafford- 6 months
PLUS- 6 months
Depends on loan, but generally 6 months
Interest Rate Fixed
Federal Perkins Loan- 5.0%
Direct Subsidized Loan- 4.66%
Direct Unsubsidized Loan- 4.66%
Direct PLUS Loan- 7.21%
Fixed and Variable
Fees Perkins- None
Stafford- 1.051% (disbursed before 12/1/13)
Stafford- 1.072% (new loans disbursed after 12/1/13)
PLUS- 4.204% (disbursed before 12/1/13)
PLUS- 4.288% (new loans disbursed after 12/1/13)
Depends on Loan, but generally no fee
Loan Forgiveness/Discharge Yes Depends on Loan/Lender
Penalty for Early Repayment No Depends on loan, but generally no penalty

How to Apply for Alternative Loans

Step 1: Select your lender from the Preferred Lender List using FastChoice.

Step 2: Complete the Alternative Loan application process required by the lender chosen in Step 1.

Step 5: Have cosigners complete their section of the application process.

Step 6: After the loan is approved by the lender, the Student Records and Financial Services office will receive a request for certification. Loan certification can take up to 30 days once all documentation has been received by the school.

Step 7: Disbursed loan funds are sent to the Student Records and Financial Services Office. If you requested early disbursement for tool or equipment purchases, you will be issued a refund check in the amount of your loan. If the loan is to be used towards the payment of your tuition, the disbursed loan will be applied directly to your semester bill.

*Note: Private Loans will not disburse to a student's bursar account until 10 days prior to the start of classes each semester, unless early disbursement for tools, equipment, etc. has been requested. For loans processed during the academic year, please allow at least 10 business days for disbursement (provided all steps have been completed).