William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program
Any student who wishes to apply for federal loans must complete:
- The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for every school year enrolled.
- All admission requirements for their program.
- Online Direct Loan Entrance Counseling at studentloans.gov. To complete you will need:
- 20–30 minutes
- Your Federal Student Aid PIN (If you do not have a Federal Student Aid PIN, please visit pin.ed.gov.)
- Online Direct Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) at studentloans.gov. To complete you will need:
- Your Federal Student Aid PIN
- Two references (addresses and phone numbers)
- A few minutes to complete the MPN in a single session
Students are eligible to apply for the following loans:
- Direct Stafford Subsidized Loan: This is a need-based loan with the interest subsidized (paid) by the federal government while you are in school at least half-time, during the six-month grace period and during periods of deferment.
Please note: The Budget Control Act of 2011 eliminated subsidized loans for graduate students beginning July 1, 2012. Graduate students will still be eligible for the full $20,500 annual amount, but all loans will be completely unsubsidized.
- Direct Stafford Unsubsidized Loan: This is a non-need based loan with interest starting to accrue upon disbursement. The student has the option to postpone payment of interest, which is then capitalized (added to the principal balance).
- Direct Parent/Graduate PLUS Loan: This is a low, fixed-interest rate student loan guaranteed by the federal government. The PLUS loan is a non-need based loan, but it is a credit-based loan similar to a private student loan, with the benefit of having a fixed interest rate and federal guarantee.
Annual loan limits
Dependent students completing a bachelor’s degree are eligible, depending on their FAFSA information, to receive:
- Freshmen (0–27 units) — $5,500 (up to $3,500 of which may be subsidized)
- Sophomores (28–59 units) — $6,500 (up to $4,500 of which may be subsidized)
- Juniors and Seniors (60+ units) — $7,500 (up to $5,500 of which may be subsidized)
- Federal Parent PLUS — Up to cost of attendance minus any federal and outside aid
Independent students (or dependent students who were denied Parent PLUS loan) completing a bachelor’s degree are eligible, depending on their FAFSA information, to receive:
- Freshmen (0-27 units) — $9,500 (up to $3,500 of which may be subsidized)
- Sophomores (28-59 units) — $10,500 (up to $4,500 of which may be subsidized)
- Juniors and Seniors (60+ units) — $12,500 (up to $5,500 of which may be subsidized)
Students completing a master’s degree are eligible, depending on their FAFSA information, to receive:
- Federal Stafford Unsubsidized — $20,500
- Federal Graduate PLUS — Up to cost of attendance minus any federal and outside aid
You must make Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) to continue receiving federal aid in addition to any academic requirements (refer to your programs handbook for academic requirements). Please refer to the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for further information.
Interest and Fees
If you receive a federal student loan, you will be required to repay that loan with interest. It is important that you understand how interest is calculated and the fees associated with your loan. Both of these factors will impact the amount you will be required to repay.
Please visit studentaid.ed.gov/types/loans/interest-rates to learn more about interest rates and fees.
Repayment begins six (6) months after you graduate, withdraw, or drop below half-time enrollment status. That six-month period is called your grace period. If you have previously used your grace period, your payments may begin immediately.
There are many repayment options available to student loan borrowers. If you find yourself in a situation where you are unable to make your student loan payments, there are also deferment and forbearance options available to you.
Please visit studentaid.ed.gov/repay-loans/understand/plans to learn how to best manage your student loans.
Federal Direct Loan Exit Counseling
The federal government requires all federal loan borrowers to complete the Direct Loan Exit Counseling at any point that the student graduates, withdraws, or drops below half-time enrollment status. Azusa Pacific University requires Direct Loan Exit Counseling be completed in order for your transcripts to be released. If you have any questions regarding the Direct Loan Exit Counseling please contact PES Student Financial Services at (626) 815-5300 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Information Needed to Begin Direct Loan Exit Counseling:
- Federal Student Aid PIN
- Social Security number
- Expected employer (if known)
- Next of kin (names, addresses, and phone numbers)
- Two (2) references who live in the United States (names, addresses, and phone numbers)
- Expected permanent address
- Driver’s license (if you have one)
Private (Alternative) Student Loans
- This is a nonfederal student loan issued by a lender, bank, or credit union. Private student loans often have variable interest rates, require a credit check and a co-signer, and do not provide the benefits of federal student loans. These loans are designed to cover costs that are not eligible to be paid by a Federal Direct Loan, i.e. a past-due balance from a previous semester or less than half-time attendance.
- Federal Direct Loans generally have more favorable terms and conditions than private loans. We recommend that you utilize all Direct Stafford Loan eligibility before turning to private loans.
- Students who need additional funds beyond the Stafford Loan should consider the Direct PLUS Loan before applying for a private loan.
APU uses a wide range of private lenders based upon their ability to provide good service to our students. Students may apply for a private student loan from a list of recommended lenders or feel free to choose another lender who provides education loans.
APU’s private lender list is without prejudice and is for the sole benefit of students attending the institution. Employees responsible for processing loans adhere to a strict student loan code of conduct.