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A student must be enrolled at least half-time and be making satisfactory academic progress in order to receive the Federal Direct Student Loan or Federal Direct Parent Plus loan.

Choose loans carefully:

  • Borrow only the amount you need
  • Make a budget and stick to it
  • Borrow from the Federal loan programs before considering private education loans
  • If you do need to borrow a private loan, do your homework and pick the one that is best for you.

DIRECT STUDENT LOANS – These student loans are deferred until 6 months after graduation, withdrawing from college, or when the student drops below half-time. They are either subsidized or unsubsidized, depending on financial need.

  • Subsidized - the government will pay the interest on this loan while the student is in school; for 2011-2012 academic year, the interest rate is 3.4%  (Effective 7/1/2011)
  • Unsubsidized – the interest will accrue on this loan while the student is in school; you may elect to make quarterly interest payments while in school, for 2011-2012 academic year, the interest rate is 6.8% 
(dependent students)
DIRECT LOAN LIMITS (independent students/dependent students whose parents were denied Plus loan)
Freshmen $5500 $9500
Sophomores $6500 $10,500
Juniors/Seniors $7500 $12,500
Graduate Students $20,500

DIRECT PARENT PLUS - This is a credit based parent loan. Repayment can be deferred until after the student graduates or drops below half-time. You may elect to pay the interest while the student is in school. A parent must apply for this loan. The interest rate is 7.9%

HOW DO I APPLY? - In Direct Lending, students borrow directly from the U.S. Department of Education through their school. Direct Loan Subsidized, Unsubsidized and Parent (PLUS) loans are applied for at the following website: .  Please apply for your student/parent loans online and e-sign your master promissory note. This ensures that your loans can be processed as quickly as possible.

WHAT ELSE DO I NEED TO DO? – All new students must complete Master Promissory Note and Entrance Counseling on line at:

HOW ARE LOANS DISBURSED? – Shaw University will receive the funds after the add/drop period is over each semester. Those funds will be applied to your student account and any excess will be refunded.

PRIVATE/ALTERNATIVE – This is a student loan, usually needs a co-signer. Interest rates vary, depending on credit.