What are loans?

If you apply for financial aid, you may be offered loans as part of your school’s financial aid offer. A loan is money you borrow and must pay back with interest.

If you decide to take out a loan, make sure you understand who is making the loan and the terms and conditions of the loan. Student loans can come from the federal government or from private sources such as a bank or financial institution. Loans made by the federal government, called federal student loans, usually offer borrowers lower interest rates and have more flexible repayment options than private loans.

Federal Direct Loans

Subsidized and Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loans are for eligible students to help cover the cost of higher education. Federal student loans are funded by the federal government.

How do I apply for a Federal Direct Loan?

  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • Complete Entrance Loan Counseling. This is required per federal regulations.
  • ALL first-time Federal Direct Stafford Loan borrowers must complete Stafford Entrance Loan Counseling before being awarded a Federal Direct Stafford Loan. An electronic confirmation will be transmitted to the Financial Aid Office within 24 hours.
  • Complete your Master Promissory Note. This will only need to be completed once while you attend CCMS.

What Is the Difference Between Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans?

After you apply for aid, you may be offered either a subsidized or unsubsidized loan, or a combination of both. The primary difference between the two is the interest rate and when the interest begins to accrue.

  • Subsidized Loans are awarded on the basis of financial need. You will not be charged any interest while the loan is in deferment status, such as while you are enrolled, as the federal government subsidizes or pays the interest.
  • Unsubsidized Loans charge interest from the time the money is first disbursed until it is paid in full. The interest is capitalized, meaning that you pay interest on any interest that has already accrued. One way to minimize how much interest accrues is to pay the interest as it accumulates.

Only undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need are eligible for Subsidized Loans. Direct Unsubsidized Loans are available to undergraduate and graduate students. Federal regulations are used to determine the amounts each student may borrow by considering the cost of attendance and other financial aid.

To learn more about Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans, visit the Department of Education’s Direct Loan comparison website.

Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loans

CCMS participates in the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program (Direct Loan). The Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) is a loan that parents can obtain to help pay the cost of education for their dependent undergraduate children. Eligible parents borrow directly from the U. S. Department of Education and can borrow up to their child’s cost of attendance minus other financial aid received.

How do I apply for a Parent PLUS direct loan?

  • Sign In
  • Click on “Request a PLUS loan.”
  • Under “What You Need” – click on “Parent PLUS.”
    • Complete “Student/Parent Personal Information” -> continue
    • Select Award Year
    • Complete “Student Parent & Loan Info”
    • Review Application
    • Credit Check and Submit
  • Once all steps are completed, make sure to print out a copy of your Master Promissory Note for your records.
  • An electronic confirmation will be transmitted to the Financial Aid Office within 48 hours.

For more information please visit the Federal Student Aid Website.

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