Federal Direct Subsidized Loan

Direct Loans are loans for students to help pay for the cost of his or her education after high school. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education. Eligibility for Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans is determined by the information you submit on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and according to U.S. Department of Education regulations. Read more about the difference between a Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loan.

  • Federal Direct Subsidized Loans are based on need.
  • No interest is charged while the student is enrolled at least half-time.
  • The U.S. Government charges a small fee, which will reduce the amount of the loan disbursed to your account.
  • Repayment begins six months after you cease to be enrolled at least half-time.

Interest Rate:

Undergraduate

2015-2016 year: 4.29% fixed
2014-2015 year: 4.66% fixed

The interest subsidy during the six-month grace period after a student leaves school has been eliminated by Congress for all Federal Direct subsidized loans that disburse after July 1, 2012, and before July 1, 2014.  Interest will accrue on those loans during grace periods. Previously interest was not charged during the six-month grace period. Interest will continue to be deferred while a student is enrolled at least half-time and during periods of authorized deferments. The U.S. government subsidizes the interest during these periods of time.

NEW:  In an effort to encourage students to obtain undergraduate degrees within a reasonable time frame, Congress enacted legislation that became effective July 1, 2013. Any new federal subsidized loan borrowers will have a limit on the maximum length of time they are eligible for subsidized loans. This means students matriculated in a four year program may be eligible for federal subsidized loans for up to six years, if they have not reached their maximum aggregate loan eligibility. Students who change majors multiple times, or who drop or retake classes excessively, are most likely to be affected. Read more.

Loan Fees:
1.073% loans disbursed after October 1, 2014

Credit Check: No

Eligibility: Must be enrolled at least half-time (six or more credits per semester)

Annual Loan Maximum:
Freshman (0-23 credits), $3,500
Sophomores (24-53 credits), $4,500
Juniors and Seniors (54-84+ credits), $5,500

Lifetime Loan Maximum:
Undergraduate students $23,000

Repayment Begins: Principal is not due while the student is enrolled at least half-time. Payments begin following a six-month grace period after graduation or if enrollment falls below half-time.

Repayment Terms: 10 years (other repayment plans available based on special circumstances)

Eligible for Federal Loan Deferments, Forbearances, or Loan Forgiveness: Yes

Eligible for Federal Consolidation: Yes

Interest Payments Eligible for Federal Tax Deduction: Yes

To Accept Your Federal Loan

Once students receive their SU Financial Aid Award Notice listing a loan estimate, they must complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Counseling session to complete the application process for a Direct Loan. Visit your MySlice Financial Aid To Do List for instructions.

To Decline Your Federal Loan/Reduce the Loan Amount

To reduce the loan amount or decline the loan completely, students must notify the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarship Programs by completing the Loan Reduction/Cancellation Form.

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan

Direct Loans are loans for students to help pay for the cost of his or her education after high school. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education. Eligibility for Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans is determined by the information you submit on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and according to U.S. Department of Education regulations. Read more about the difference between a Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loan.

  • An unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan is based on need.
  • Interest is charged while you are enrolled at least half-time.
  • Undergraduate students are eligible to borrow $2,000 annually.
  • You may choose to defer the interest, but if this option is selected, the interest will be capitalized (added to the principal amount).
  • The U.S. Government charges a small fee, which will reduce the amount of the loan disbursed to your account.

Interest Rate:

Undergraduate student

2015-2016 4.29% fixed
2014-2015  4.66% fixed

Graduate student

2015-2016 5.84% fixed
2014-2015 6.21% fixed

Loan Fees:
1.073% loans disbursed after October 1, 2014

Credit Check: No

Eligibility: Must be at least half-time (six or more credits per semester)

Annual Loan Maximum: Most undergraduate students are eligible to receive up to $2,000 in unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan. Students who do not receive full eligibility for subsidized loans (based on need and student’s academic level) may receive the difference in unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan. Graduate students may be eligible for up to $20,500 in unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan.

Undergraduate students whose parents are denied the Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan may apply for an additional unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan; the maximum amount is:
Freshmen and sophomores with 0-53 credits – $4,000
Junior and senior with 54+ credits –  $5,000

Lifetime Loan Maximum:
Dependent Students – $31,000
Independent Students – $57,500 (of which no more than $23,000 can be subsidized)
Graduate Students – $138,500 (of which no more than $65,500 can be subsidized loan). This total includes undergraduate borrowing.

Repayment Begins: Principal is not due while the student is enrolled at least half-time or during the six-month grace period. Interest is due while in school, but can be deferred. If the interest is deferred, it will be capitalized (added to principal).

Repayment Terms: 10 years (other repayment plans available based on special circumstances)

Eligible for Federal Loan: Deferments, Forbearances, or Loan Forgiveness: Yes

Eligible for Federal Consolidation: Yes

Interest Payments Eligible for Federal Tax Deduction: Yes

To Accept Your Federal Loan

Once students receive their SU Financial Aid Award Notice listing a loan estimate, they must complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Counseling session to complete the application process for a Direct Loan. Visit your MySlice Financial Aid To Do List for instructions.

To Decline Your Federal Loan/Reduce the Loan Amount

To reduce the loan amount or decline the loan completely, students must notify the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarship Programs by completing the Loan Reduction/Cancellation Form.

Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan (for parents)

The Federal Direct PLUS (FPLUS) loan is a loan parents can obtain to help pay for the cost of education for their dependent undergraduate children. A Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) must be filed to apply. The loan funds are borrowed from the federal government.

Parents may apply for an FPLUS loan at any time during the academic year. Parents are encouraged to budget their cost for the entire academic year to determine the FPLUS loan needed and then submit an FPLUS application to cover those costs. Parents must reapply for an FPLUS loan each year their child is an undergraduate student.

Parents who wish to apply for an FPLUS loan will be subject to a credit check as part of the application process. Payment of principal and interest begins 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed. Upon request, payment deferment privileges may be available with some restrictions.

Interest Rate:

2015-2016 6.84% fixed
2014-2015  7.21% fixed

Loan Fees:
4.292% loans disbursed after October 1, 2014

Credit Check: Yes (no adverse credit)

Eligibility: Must be at least half-time (six or more credits per semester)

Annual Loan Maximum: Total cost of attendance minus all aid resources and loans received.

Lifetime Loan Maximum: None

Repayment Begins: Payments of principal and interest begin 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed. Requests to defer payments while the student is enrolled may be made during the application process. If the FPLUS loan has already been processed, a deferment request may be made to the loan servicer.

Repayment Terms: 10 years (other repayment plans available based on special circumstances)

Eligible for Federal Loan Deferments, Forbearances, or Loan Forgiveness: Yes

Eligible for Federal Consolidation: Yes

Interest Payments Eligible for Federal Tax Deduction: Yes

How To Apply for a Federal PLUS Loan

STEP 1: Determine the amount of FPLUS loan that you wish to borrow using our Loan Worksheet.

Step 2:  Go to studentloans.gov, and click on the green “Sign In” box under Manage My Direct Loan.

STEP 3: After signing in, select

  • Request a Direct PLUS Loan, then
  • Parent PLUS
  • Follow steps 1 – 4 to complete the online credit check
  • Upon completing step 4, a credit decision will be displayed.

STEP 4: Syracuse University will transmit final loan approval and disbursement request to the Department of Education.

To Decline Your Federal Loan/Reduce the Loan Amount

To reduce the loan amount or decline the loan completely, students must notify the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarship Programs by completing the Loan Reduction/Cancellation Form.

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan

The Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan is a long-term, fixed-rate loan borrowed by graduate students to bridge the financial gap between their educational cost of attendance and their other financial aid.

  • Students must borrow their maximum eligibility in Federal Direct Loans before they may apply for this loan program.
  • Eligibility is calculated by the Cost of Attendance minus other financial aid.

Interest Rate:

2015-2016 6.84% fixed
2014-2015 7.21% fixed

Loan Fees:
4.292% loans disbursed after October 1, 2014

Credit Check: Yes (no adverse credit)

Eligibility: Must be at least half-time (six or more credits per semester)

Annual Loan Maximum: Total cost of attendance minus all aid resources and loans received.

Lifetime Loan Maximum: None

Repayment Begins: Payment of principal and interest begins once the loan is fully disbursed. The loan will be placed into deferment for graduate students while you are enrolled at least half-time.

Repayment Terms: 10 to 25 years based on balance owed

Eligible for Federal Loan Deferments, Forbearances, or Loan Forgiveness: Yes

Eligible for Federal Consolidation: Yes

Interest Payments Eligible for Federal Tax Deduction: Yes

How to Apply for a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan

STEP 1: Determine the amount of FPLUS loan that you wish to borrow using our Loan Worksheet.

Step 2:  Go online to studentloans.gov and click on the green Sign In box under Manage My Direct Loan.


Step 3:
After signing in, select:

  • Request  a Direct PLUS loan, then
  • Graduate PLUS
  • Follow steps 1 – 4 to complete the online credit check
  • Upon completing step 4, a credit decision will be displayed.
  • Complete the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan master promissory note.

Step 4: Syracuse University will transmit final loan approval and disbursement request to the Department of Education.

Step 5: For new borrowers, an entrance counseling or loan counseling session must be completed on studentloans.gov.

To Decline Your Federal Loan/Reduce the Loan Amount

To reduce the loan amount or decline the loan completely, students must notify the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarship Programs by completing the Loan Reduction/Cancellation Form.

Choosing an Alternative (private) Loan

Alternative education loans are offered through banks, many credit unions, and states to help bridge the gap between financial aid and the cost of education. Alternative loans are not federally sponsored or guaranteed; therefore, the FAFSA is not required. Students should apply for alternative loans only if additional funding is needed after applying for all federal student and parent loans. Ask these questions before you borrow.

Alternative loans must be certified or approved by the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarship Programs to ensure the loan does not exceed the cost of attendance minus all other financial aid.

Interest Rate: Varies by lender

Loan Fees: Varies by lender

Credit Check: Yes

Cosigner Required: Varies by lender, but usually yes

Annual Loan Maximum: Total cost of attendance minus all aid resources and loans received.

Lifetime Loan Maximum: Varies by lender

Repayment Begins: Varies by lender

Repayment Terms: Varies by lender

Eligible for Loan Deferments or Forbearances: Varies by lender

Eligible for Federal Consolidation: No

Eligible for Alternative/Private Loan Consolidation: Varies by lender

Interest Payments Eligible for Federal Tax Deduction: Check with a tax advisor

To assist you in making your borrowing decision

You may use private loan comparison websites such as the National College Finance Center. You may choose any lender from which you are eligible to borrow. Syracuse University does not recommend lenders.

Contact your alternative lender directly to begin the application process. Once your completed application has been credit approved, your lender will electronically transmit it to our office for certification.

Once we process your application, the amount of your loan will be available on My Financial Aid on MySlice.

New federal regulations require all students that apply for an alternative/private loan to complete a Private Education Loan Application Self-Certification form. Your lender will require this form as part of your application process. The form can be submitted by fax, paper, or electronically depending on your lender. The form requires you to submit your cost of attendance, estimated financial assistance and the difference between both. All of this information can be found on My Financial Aid on your MySlice account. Submit this form directly to your lender, not to Syracuse University.

To Decline Your Federal Loan/Reduce the Loan Amount

To reduce the loan amount or decline the loan completely, students must notify the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarship Programs by completing the Loan Reduction/Cancellation Form.