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Alternative Loan Programs

If you find that you need funding beyond the limits of the Federal Direct Student Loan Program, you may wish to consider an Alternative Loan. These loans are not guaranteed by the Federal government and are considered private loans. We urge all students and parents to research any lender they are considering for this type of funding and to specifically ask a number of key questions, including:

  • current interest rates
  • co-signer requirements
  • repayment options, both in school and out
  • whether or not the loan may be sold to another provider

The University does not have a preferred lender for alternative loans; each student has the right to select the educational loan provider of his or her choice. However, there are a number of independent resources that can be used to evaluate and analyze alternative loan options, including http://studentlendinganalytics.com/alternative_loan_options.html.

If you have considered applying for an alternative loan, you may be required to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid at www.fafsa.ed.gov in order for the University to certify your loan eligibility. Alternative loans that are used to cover prior semesters may require additional information for approval, such as letters certifying indebtedness, attendance verification, official transcripts, etc. As such, when requesting funding for prior terms, be sure to reference the correct academic year on your application.

The basic process involved with securing alternative loans is the electronic filing of an application, institutional certification, and approval information. Generally speaking, electronic filing processing requires at least 72 hours before a lender will respond. The University will assist you in this process and will determine for you the maximum loan amount you will be allowed to borrow based on your estimated cost of attendance and pre-existing financial aid awards. The complete process normally takes 7-14 business days.