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 Loans

Loans are awarded after eligibility for grants has been considered. Student loans should be borrowed with the full realization that the money must be repaid with interest. There are several types of student loans, so it is important to understand the terms and conditions of each loan. You may access your total outstanding loan balance and view your Loan Servicer contact information via the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).

Loan Requirements
Entrance Counseling

The Department of Education states that all first time borrowers complete Entrance Counseling before receiving a Federal Direct Stafford Loan.  Entrance Counseling is an online tutorial designed to help you better understand your rights and responsibilities as a Direct Stafford Loan borrower. 

Click the link below to begin your Entrance Counseling.

Begin Entrance Counseling

HOW TO: Complete your Direct Loan Entrance Counseling

Follow the steps listed below once you have opened Studentloans.gov, the Department of Education online student loans portal. NOTE: Make sure you complete Entrance Counseling NOT Financial Awareness Counseling.

  1. Sign In (you will need your Department of Education PIN and a copy of your financial aid award from your my.NWTC account).
  2. Click Complete Counseling.
  3. Under Entrance Counseling, click Start.
  4. Choose your school (Select Wisconsin and then NWTC from the dropdown and click Add School).
  5. Select Undergraduate.
  6. Read Counseling Instructions.
  7. Complete counseling session by reading the information and answering the corresponding questions on each page (you will need a copy of your financial aid award, located under View Financial Aid in your my.NWTC account).
Master Promissory Note
HOW TO: Complete your Direct Loan Master Promissory Note

All students receiving a Federal Direct Stafford loan are required to sign a Master Promissory Note (MPN).  The MPN is the agreement to repay the loan and covers multiple loan disbursements during your academic career. The expiration is 10 years from the date signed. To complete your MPN please go to www.studentloans.gov.

Federal Direct Subsidized Loan

Direct Subsidized Loans are awarded to students with financial need. The Financial Aid staff will review the results of your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and determine the amount you can borrow.

Loan Terms
  • No interest accumulates on the Subsidized Loan while the student is attending at least half time.

  • If the student drops below half time status, the grace period begins.

  • All loans have an origination fee.

  • Repayment begins after the end of the grace period.

For more information, visit studentaid.ed.gov.

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan

You are not required to demonstrate financial need to receive a Direct Unsubsidized Loan. Like Subsidized Loans, the Financial Aid staff will determine the amount you can borrow based on the results of your FAFSA. Interest accrues on an Unsubsidized Loan from the date of disbursement.

Loan Terms
  • Interest begins accumulating on the Unsubsidized Loan when the funds are disbursed to the student.

  • If the student drops below half time status, the grace period begins.

  • All loans have an origination fee.

  • Payments can be made on the Unsubsidized Loan at any time.

  • Repayment begins after the end of the grace period.

For more information, visit studentaid.ed.gov.

 
Direct Loan Borrower Annual and Aggregate Loan Limits
Annual Loan Limits
Grade Level
Maximum Subsidized
Unsubsidized
Total Yearly Amounts

Freshman (DEP)

$ 3,500

$ 2,000

$ 5,500

Freshman (IND)

$ 3,500

$ 6,000

$ 9,500

Sophomore (DEP)

$ 4,500

$ 2,000

$ 6,500

Sophomore (IND)

$ 4,500

$ 6,000

$ 10,500

 
Aggregate Loan Limits
Classification
Maximum Subsidized
Unsubsidized
Maximum Total

Undergraduate (DEP)

$ 23,000

$ 8,000

$ 31,000

Undergraduate (IND)

$ 23,000

$ 34,500

$ 57,500

 

You may access your total outstanding loan balance and view your Loan Servicer contact information via the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).

Federal PLUS Loan (Parent Loan)

PLUS Loans enable parents with good credit histories to borrow to help pay the education expenses of each child who is an eligible dependent undergraduate student enrolled at least half-time (6 credits).

Your child must be a dependent student who is enrolled at least half-time and making Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). In addition, parents and their child must be U.S. citizens or eligible noncitizens with a domestic address. PLUS Loans are not processed until the student's financial aid has been awarded.

To be eligible for a PLUS Loan, the parent must pass a credit check that indicates they do not have adverse credit history. For the PLUS loan, adverse credit history is defined as being 90 or more days delinquent on any debt or having any debt within the past five years subjected to default determination, bankruptcy discharge, foreclosure, repossession, tax lien, wage garnishment, or write-off.

To apply, please complete the following documents:

Step 1: Complete the PLUS Master Promissory Note (MPN) online, AND

Step 2: Print, complete and return the Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan Request.

If a parent is denied a PLUS loan, the Financial Aid Office will proceed based on the parent's preference as indicated on the PLUS Loan Request. Parents may find a co-signer or the student may borrow additional Unsubsidized Loan based on annual loan limits.

Alternative (Private) Loans

Alternative loans are used to help bridge the gap between the cost of your education and the amount available from federal and state grants and loans. Alternative loans typically carry higher interest rates and fees than federal loans. The loan programs differ, so it is important that you know the terms and conditions of the loan, as well as, your rights and responsibilities as a borrower. It is recommended that students borrow wisely. Before you look at alternative loans, please make sure that you have exhausted all possible federal and state financial aid funds available. Our office strongly recommends that students file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) before applying for private loans.

Alternative loans for the next academic year will not be processed prior to August. Most lenders require a credit check which is only valid for 90 days. Please keep this in mind when applying for alternative loans.

Direct Loan Exit Counseling

The Department of Education states that all Federal Direct Stafford loan borrowers complete Exit Counseling.  Exit Counseling is required when you graduate, leave school, or drop below half time enrollment. Exit Counseling provides important information you need to prepare to repay your federal student loan(s).  At the end, you will need to provide the name, address, e-mail address and telephone number for your next of kin, two references who live in the United States and current or expected employer information (if known).

Click the link below to begin your Exit Counseling.

Begin Exit Counseling

Once you have completed the online Exit Counseling session, the information will be sent electronically to the Financial Aid Office.

Loan Repayment
 

 Watch the Video

 
 

 

After the Direct Loan is disbursed to the student, the loan is assigned to one of the Federal Direct Loan Servicers. The Loan Servicer will send periodic statements to the borrower regarding their loan status. Once the student drops below half time status or stops attending, there is a six month grace period on the loan. Students in this status will be required to complete Exit Loan Counseling. Repayment begins after the grace period ends. All repayment questions, including questions about deferment, forbearance, loan forgiveness, and consolidation should be directed to the Loan Servicer. For students who need help contacting their Loan Servicer, visit the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) website.

REpayment Q & A

When do I start paying back my student loans?

The repayment will begin six months after you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time enrollment for a Federal Stafford Loan (Direct Loan Program or Federal Family Education Loan – FFEL Program).

How much time do I have to repay my student loans?

Depending on the types of loans you have and repayment plan you choose, you have from 10 to 25 years to repay your loans. When it comes time to repay, you can pick a repayment plan that’s best suited to your financial situation. Repayment choices can be viewed on www.studentaid.ed.gov.

What is a loan servicer, and how do I contact them?

A loan servicer processes student loan bills, payments, deferments, and provides other administrative services. To find your loan servicer, please visit www.studentaid.ed.gov.

How much will I have to repay each month?

Your monthly repayment amount will depend on the type of loan you have, size of your debt, the length of your repayment period, and the repayment plan you choose. You may estimate your payment by using the Department of Education Repayment Calculators.

Loan Deferment or Forbearance can be found on Student Aid on the Web.

Additional repayment loan information can be found on Student Aid on the Web.

 

For additional assistance with loan definitions please visit our Loan Terminology page.