Financial Aid & Scholarship Office

Alternative/Private Education Loans

Fall 2024: First possible disbursement date is September 5, 2024

Spring 2025: First possible disbursement date is January 30, 2025

Private education loans may be an option for those students who need additional money to pay for the cost of attending college. We encourage students to file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine their eligibility for federal student aid and Federal Direct Loans before considering private education loans.


Private education loans are offered through a lending institution and are not a part of federal student aid programs. Interest rates and fees for private loans vary between lenders and are typically based on the credit of the borrower and cosigner. It is the responsibility of the student to research and understand the implications of borrowing a private education loan. Keep in mind that alternative loans, along with other aid and educational resources, can never be more than the cost of attendance.

Certifications of Private Education Loans take up to six weeks to process. If you are applying for the Fall 2024 term, your application must be submitted by July 8, 2024 to be certified by the Fall fee payment deadline of July 31, 2024.

While there is a great range of private educational loans available, we do not recommend alternative loans in most cases, as they do not have the beneficial aspects of the Federal Direct Loan Program. If you need to pursue a private loan, make sure you get all the facts(opens in new window).


Understand your loan options

Many families consider financing a portion of their student’s education with either a Federal Direct PLUS Loan or a private alternative loan.  The comparison chart below will help you understand the features of each type of loan.

Loan Options
Option

Federal PLUS Loan

Private Student Loan

Private Parent Loan

Primary Borrower

Parent

Student

Parent or other eligible non-student individual

Loan Maximum

Up to school-certified cost of attendance minus other financial aid received.

Generally, up to school-certified cost of attendance minus other financial aid received.

Varies by Lender

Interest Rate

8.05% fixed rate for 2023-24 aid year. Rate may change for the 2024-25 aid year on July 1, 2024.

Rates are based on the borrower’s credit history.

Rates are based on the borrower’s credit history.

Origination Fee

4.228%

Varies by lender, most offer 0%

Varies by lender, most offer 0%

Repayment Term

10-25 years

Varies by lender

Varies by lender

Payment Flexibility

PLUS loans are eligible for graduated and extended repayment options, federal consolidation, and some public service loan forgiveness options.

Repayment options vary by lender.

Repayment options vary by lender.

Credit Check Required

Yes. Applicant or endorser cannot have adverse credit history.

Yes. Loan approval and pricing is generally based on creditworthiness.

Yes. Loan approval and pricing is generally based on creditworthiness.

Minimum Enrollment Status

At least half time

Varies by lender, some offer loans for students enrolled less than half time.

Varies by lender, some offer loans for students enrolled less than half time.

Options for Denied Loans

If parent applies and is denied, the student is eligible for additional Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loans.

If student is denied, they may apply with a cosigner.

Varies by lender.  Parent or other creditworthy individual may be able to obtain a cosigner.

Application Process

Parent-PLUS Loan

Online with lender

Online with lender