Overview

Overview

Federal and private loans are need-based financial aid that must be repaid, sometimes with interest. Federal loans include the Direct Loan, Graduate PLUS Loan, Perkins Loan, and more. Some federal loans don't accrue any interest while you're still a student. Private loans are another option to help you pay for the remainder of your education.

Federal Loans

Federal Loans

Direct Loans

Federal Direct Loans are low interest rate loans that all students can apply for, provided they have filed a FAFSA and meet the criteria to receive federal aid. 

As with all loans, Stafford Loans must be repaid with interest. Graduate students can be eligible to receive unsubsidized Direct Loans. To receive the funds, you must be enrolled at least half time (3 units).

Financial Need

Not based on need

Limits

Cannot exceed the Federal Direct Loan annual limits noted below.

Annual Loan Limits

Annual loan limits will be determined by program enrollment. Contact your student financial aid advisor for more details.

Aggregate Loan Limits

The maximum lifetime total that you can borrow for unsubsidized and subsidized Direct Loans combined is $138,500 for graduate students.

Interest

The interest rate is a variable fixed rate which is determined at the beginning of each academic year (July 1). For more information, visit studentaid.gov

Fees

Fees are determined by the date of the first disbursement of the loan. For more information, visit studentaid.gov

Apply for Loans and Entrance Counseling

After being awarded an unsubsidized Direct Loan, go to studentloans.gov to complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) and your entrance counseling. Please note that once awarded a federal loan, students still need to accept their loan in order for it to be credited to their student account.

If you are a continuing student borrower at PLNU, go to your student portal to accept your loans (an MPN and entrance counseling is only required for new borrowers).

Repayment

Repayment begins six months after you graduate, withdraw, or cease to be enrolled at least half time (3 units). The loan repayment period is typically 10 years, but may change depending on the loan repayment program you choose or if you make more than the minimum payment.

Graduate PLUS Loan

Graduate students at PLNU may also be eligible for the Graduate PLUS Loan. The Graduate PLUS Loan is intended for graduate students whose educational costs exceed their maximum Direct Loan eligibility or for students who have met their aggregate Direct Loan limit ($138,500 combined undergraduate and graduate unsubsidized and subsidized loans). Although the loan is not based on need, the FAFSA must be completed. The Graduate PLUS Loan is a credit-based loan. 

For information concerning the interest rate for the Graduate PLUS Loan, visit studentaid.gov.

For information concerning the origination fees for the Graduate PLUS Loan, visit studentaid.gov.

Repayment begins 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed. There is no grace period for Direct PLUS Loans. However, you can postpone payments on your Direct PLUS Loan while you are in school by contacting your loan servicer. If you are not sure who your loan servicer is, visit The National Student Loan Data System.

For more information on Graduate PLUS Loans, please visit studentaid.gov.

Smart Borrowing

PLNU strongly encourages smart borrowing. Students should know the repayment plans before accepting any loans. Loans that show up as "Financial Aid Awarded" on your award letter are maximum amounts; reduced amounts can be accepted. Borrow only what you need! Please take five minutes to go through Financial Awareness Counseling before accepting loans.

Perkins Loan

A Federal Perkins Loan is a low-interest loan for students with exceptional financial need. The program is campus-based, meaning that PLNU awards the loan and manages repayment.   

Funds are limited and not all qualified applicants will receive a Perkins Loan. If you are awarded a Perkins Loan, it will appear on your award letter. Because of the limited availability of funds, there is no guarantee that you will continue to receive Perkins Loans in subsequent years.

  • Loan Amounts: $1,500 per semester
  • Interest: Fixed at five percent. Interest does not start accruing until nine months after the student graduates or the student's enrolled unit-level drops below half-time status.
  • Repayment: Nine months after the student graduates or the student's enrolled unit-level drops below half-time status. When a student goes into repayment, he or she will have up to 10 years to repay the loan. Perkins Loans are considered federal funds and therefore are subject to similar repayment guidelines as other federal loans. Non-repayment of a Perkins Loan must be reported by PLNU to the federal government and will affect your credit score. PLNU is the lender for this loan, so repayment will be to the university or its servicer, ECSI. 
     

Private Loans

Private Loans

A private loan is a loan of last resort. A student should apply for a private loan only after all federal loan options have been exhausted. It is advisable only if you have no further eligibility for other loan programs and you need more funding. This type of loan is based on your credit. Please be cautious and borrow only what you need for the academic year. 

View Our Private Loan Lender List

Private loans are offered by various lenders, who set their own criteria on credit and interest rates. In most cases, the interest rates are higher than the Federal Direct Loan and Graduate PLUS Loan. If you have little or no credit and want to get a lower interest rate, you may be required by the lender to have a co-signer. Interest rates are based on PRIME or LIBOR plus a percentage tier that may range from 0 percent to 12 percent, depending on the borrower’s credit and, if required, co-signer’s credit. Students should research different lenders since the criteria on a private loan can vary from lender to lender.

Notes

  • If you have any questions regarding the lender's website or process, please contact the lender.

  • To ensure fully informed borrowing, you should refer directly to each lender's loan application and promissory note for exact information regarding terms, assumptions, conditions, eligibility, definitions, and Annual Percentage Rate (APR), or contact your lender.

  • Most lenders use the Prime Rate or LIBOR: The current Prime Rate is 3.25 percent and LIBOR is 0.95 percent, effective October 10, 2012. Rates change monthly.

  • If possible, please apply with one lender only. Applying with multiple lenders may affect your credit.

Smart Borrowing

PLNU strongly encourages smart borrowing. Students should know the repayment plans before accepting any loans. Loans that show up as "Financial Aid Awarded" on your award letter are maximum amounts; reduced amounts can be accepted. Borrow only what you need! Please take five minutes to go through Financial Awareness Counseling before accepting loans.

Loan Forgiveness

Loan Forgiveness

Depending on where you work, you may qualify for a loan forgiveness program.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness

If you work full time in a public service job, you may qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness.

What is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program?

The PSLF program is intended to encourage individuals to enter and continue to work full time in public service jobs. Under this program, you may qualify for forgiveness of the remaining balance due on your Federal Direct Loans after you have made 120 qualifying payments on those loans while employed full time by certain public service employers. Since you must make 120 qualifying payments on your eligible federal student loans after October 1, 2007, before you qualify for the loan forgiveness, the first forgiveness of loan balances will not be granted until October 2017 (information provided by studentaid.ed.gov). To learn more about the PSLF program, and to find out if you might qualify, visit studentaid.gov.

Federal Teacher Loan Forgiveness

The Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program is a national program that will forgive $5,000 of student loans for teachers and $17,500 of student loans for math, science, or special education teachers.

The applicant must work for five consecutive years as a full-time teacher in a low-income school before applying. The application is sent directly to the student’s loan holder after completing five consecutive years of service. For more information regarding this program and a list of qualified low-income schools, please visit the Federal Student Aid website at studentaid.gov.

Assumption Program of Loans for Education

The Assumption Program of Loans for Education (APLE) is a competitive teacher incentive program designed to encourage outstanding students, district interns, and currently credentialed teachers to seek and teach in specified K-12 teaching positions in designated California public schools.

The current State Budget Act does not authorize any new APLE applications for this year. This change also impacts the District Interns Program and the Credentialed Teachers Program.

The California Student Aid Commission will continue to process paperwork and payments for existing APLE participants (2011–12 academic year and prior), including participants in the District Interns Program and Credentialed Teachers Program.