Loan Information

Part of a student‘s financial aid package from Heidelberg will include a student loan payable after graduation. Student loans are part of a student‘s self-help portion of their award. The two loan programs available to Heidelberg students are the Federal Perkins Loan and the Federal Direct Loan Program. Parents also have a loan program available to them to help meet the cost of higher education, the Direct PLUS Loan.

Federal Perkins Loan

The Federal Perkins Loan is a low interest (5%) loan to help students with exceptional need. Heidelberg is the lender. The school makes the loan with federal funds and a shared contribution. Repayment begins and interest accrues nine months after graduation. Payment is made quarterly. Freshman and sophomore students receive priority with amounts usually being $1,000 per year.

To complete your Perkins paperwork visit the Documents and Forms page.

Federal Direct Loan Program

Direct loans are guaranteed, low interest loans for students. The lender is the Department of Education.

There are two types of Direct Loans: subsidized and unsubsidized.  A Direct subsidized loan is need-based. No interest is charged while the student is enrolled at least half-time.  A Direct unsubsidized loan is not based on financial need and interest is charged during the enrollment period. The interest rate is determined each July 1st.  The rate for 2014-15 is 4.66%.

Undergraduate Annual Loan Limits for Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans:

  Dependent Independent
First Year (freshman) $5,500 (maximum $3,500 subsidized) $9,500 (maximum $3,500 subsidized)
Second Year (sophomore) $6,500 (maximum $4,500 subsidized) $10,500 (maximum $4,500 subsidized)
Third Year (junior and beyond) $7,500 (maximum $5,500 subsidized) $12,500 (maximum $5,500 subsidized)

Aggregate Loan Limits:

  Dependent Independent
Undergraduate $31,000 (maximum $23,000 subsidized) $57,500 (maximum $23,000 subsidized)

You can complete the Direct Loan paperwork here:

Federal Direct Loan Entrance Counseling and Master Promissory Note

Federal Direct Loan Exit Counseling

Benefits that are part of the federal student loan program include:

  • Congressionally mandated deferment and forbearance periods for qualifying borrowers.
  • Multiple repayment plan options to help make repayment more affordable.
  • Loan forgiveness for qualifying borrowers.
  • Loan discharge due to death or permanent disability.  This means if something happens to you along these lines the debt is forgiven and no one is responsible for it.
  • Fixed interest rate that will not increase if rates in the general economy increase in the future.
  • Tax deductions for loan interest paid to qualifying borrowers.

Direct PLUS Loan for Parents

The Direct PLUS Loan for Parents is a loan option available to parents with good credit. Parents can borrow up to the difference in the student's cost of attendance less any financial aid. The interest rate for 2014-15 is 7.21%.  Payment beginning 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed.  A payment delay may be requested while the student is enrolled at least half-time.

Begin to apply for a Direct PLUS Loan, Direct PLUS Master Promissory Note

For more information about the Direct Loan Program, visit

Private Student Alternative Loans

Education Loans help bridge the gap between the actual cost of education and the limited amount the government allows you to borrow in its programs. Private loans are offered by private lenders and there are no federal forms to complete. Eligibility for private student loans often depends on your credit score.

It is better to apply for a private loan with a cosigner even if you could qualify for a loan on your own. Just applying with a cosigner usually results in a slightly lower rate, as such loans are not as risky for the lender. Moreover, the interest rates and fees are usually based on the higher of the two credit scores. So if your cosigner has a much better credit score than you, it could result in a much lower interest rate.

Please know that you have the right to borrow through the lender of your choice and you are not limited to those included through the Private Education Loan Selection Tools.

IMPORTANT NOTE:  Due to recent regulatory program changes, it may take 4 to 6 weeks for you to receive funds from a private education loan, once you have filed an application for the loan.

FAST Choice - Great Lakes Educational Loan Service's Private Loan Selection Tool

A Private education loan selection tool that provides basic information on private education loans and detailed listings of the various interest rates, borrower benefits, fees and repayment options established by several private lenders.
FAST Choice -   Alternative Loan Comparison and Application

Private Student Loan Marketplace Once you have considered scholarships, grants and federal student loans, you can find a private student loan using the Private Student Loan Marketplace. The Marketplace is the only website that presents, side-by-side, the specific loan rates and terms you would see if you applied with each lender directly. You should then pick the private loan that is most appropriate for you and continue on to your chosen lender to complete the loan process.

The Marketplace will pull your credit report in order to instantly simulate the actual terms of loans available to you from local and national lenders - complete with APR, interest rate, total cost, monthly payment, borrower benefits, fees and repayment options. Your credit report will not be harmed by using the Marketplace. Remember that only by completing the lender's application can you be sure to receive the product rate and terms you select in the Marketplace.

(Since this loan selection tool is based on a credit report, it's important for borrowers to read "How it Works".)

Marketplace Private Lender Disclosure Information - Information on terms and current interest rates, fees, etc.

Still have questions? Please visit the Student Loan FAQs page for more information.