Federal Aid Programs
One of the largest federal aid programs is the William D. Ford Federal Direct Lending Program, which is comprised of loans such as the Federal Direct Unsubsidized and Direct Graduate PLUS Loans. The Federal Direct Lending program is funded by the US federal government, supported by the US Treasury.
Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
US citizens and permanent residents may apply for up to $20,500/year through the fixed rate Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan.
Fixed Rate Federal Graduate PLUS Loans
Domestic students may be able to meet the remaining amount in their financial aid budget through a fixed rate Federal loan, called the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan. Applicants should wait to apply for loans until they have been admitted.
The following chart illustrates the terms of the Federal Direct Unsubsidized and Federal Direct Graduate PLUS loan. Interest rates published are effective for loans disbursed between July 1, 2023 and June 30, 2024. All of the loans are set up with a 10 year repayment unless otherwise requested.
2023-2024 William D. Ford Federal Direct Loans
|Properties||Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan||Federal Direct Graduate Plus Loan|
|Interest Rate||7.05% fixed*||8.05% fixed**|
|Origination Fee||1.057% for loans first disbursed on or after October 1, 2020.||4.228% for loans first disbursed on or after October 1, 2020.|
|Eligibility||Not need-based, however, FAFSA form needed to qualify. No credit check.||FAFSA form required, must borrow full Unsubsidized Loan first; loan approval based on a credit check.|
|In-School Interest||Interest accrues from disbursement and is deferred with principal. Unpaid interest may be capitalized when repayment begins.||Interest accrues from disbursement and is deferred with principal. Unpaid interest may be capitalized when repayment begins.|
|Maximum Borrowing Amount||Maximum of $20,500 per academic year ($10,250 per semester)||Up to the full financial aid budget, less the amount of other financial aid received.|
* Based on 10-year Treasury bond yield plus 3.60%.
** Based on 10-year Treasury bond yield plus 4.60%.
Please note: As of July 2012, Federal Direct Subsidized Loans are no longer offered to graduate students - only Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans.