Direct Loans are low-interest loans for students and parents to help pay for the cost of a student's education after high school. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education (the Department).
With Direct Loans, you:
- Borrow directly from the federal government and have a single contact - your loan servicer - for everything related to the repayment of your loans, even if you receive Direct Loans at different schools;
- Have online access to your Direct Loan account information via your servicer's website;
- Can choose from several repayment plans that are designed to meet the needs of most borrowers, and you can switch repayment plans if your needs change.
Types of Loans:
- Subsidized Direct Loan - These loans are for undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need, as determined by federal regulations. No interest is charged while a student is enrolled in school at least half-time, during the grace period, and during deferment periods.
- Unsubsidized Direct Loan - This type of loan is not based on financial need. Interest is charged during all periods, even during the time a student is in school and during grace and deferment periods.
- Parent PLUS Loan - Parent PLUS Loans enable parents with good credit histories to borrow money to help pay for the educational expenses of undergraduate students enrolled on att least a half-time basis. Parent PLUS Loans are not based on financial need. A credit check is required to ensure the applicant does not have adverse credit. There are no loan limits for the Parent PLUS Loan. Parent borrowers may be eligible to borrow an amount equal to the cost of attendance less any other financial aid the dependent student receives. Interest begins to accrue from the first disbursement date, and repayment begins within 60 days after the final loan disbursement. Click here to download the Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan Application.
- Private Education Loan - Private Education Loans can help you pay for college, generally at a better interest rate than other lines of credit. You should only use private education loans as supplemental funding after you have exhausted all other sources of financial aid, including grants, scholarships, work-study, and Federal Direct Loans. As with any student loan, be conservative and only borrow what you absolutely need. Click here to download the Private Education Loan Application. Private Education Loan Applicant Self-Certification Form
What Can You Use Loan Money For?
If you receive a federal loan, you can only use the money to pay for educational expenses at CLCC. These include: tuition and fees; books, supplies, and equipment; the rental or purchase of a personal computer; room and board; dependent child care expenses; transportation; and miscellaneous expenses.
How to Apply for the 2015-2016 Award Year (Fall 2015 * Spring 2016 * Summer 2016)
- Complete a FAFSA for the 2015-1016 award year at www.fafsa.ed.gov.
- Complete Entrance Counseling online. PRINT and ATTACH completion confirmation page.
- Submit your Master Promissory Note (MPN) for Subsidized/Unsubsidized Loans online. (PRINT and ATTACH completion confirmation page.)
- Review your Loan History online. (PRINT and ATTACH your NSLDS information.)
- Complete and return the Direct Loan Request Form to the Co-Lin Financial Aid Office.
Federal Loans vs. Private Loans
Federal loans are a better deal than loans from private lenders. Federal student loans generally have lower interest rates that are fixed, generous repayment plans, no repayment penalties, and no credit checks (except for PLUS loans).
Track Your Loan History
You can track your loan history at the National Student Loan Data System. All your federal loan information is reported to NSLDS, where you, your loan servicer, and other authorized users can access it.
Student Loan Repayment Assistance — Co-Lin's Partnership with USA Funds®
As you begin your school experience, or as you prepare to leave school, we want to ensure you are well-informed and equipped to repay the loans that helped finance your higher education. We have partnered with USA Funds® — a nonprofit organization with more than 50 years of experience in counseling student loan borrowers — to assist you in understanding your loan repayment commitments and in addressing any issues you may encounter with the repayment of your student loans.
In the coming months, you may receive a call from a USA Funds Borrower Connect InTouchSM representative who will:
• Help you understand your loan obligations and responsibilities
• Discuss available options for an achievable and affordable repayment plan.
• Ensure you are aware of repayment options during financial hardships.
• Promote your long-term repayment success.
These representatives are available to counsel you about your outstanding loans and, when appropriate, work with you and your loan servicer to address any loan payment issues.
To contact a USA Funds representative for assistance, please call (866) 497-8723.
For More Information
- The federal government offers a lot of detailed information about loans at StudentLoans.gov.
- To estimate eligibility to determine if you may qualify for Income-Based Repayment (IBR) visit www.ibrinfo.org.
- To gain information on loans before you owe: www.consumerfinance.gov/students/knowbeforeyouowe.
- To view the Code of Conduct