A Direct Stafford Loan is a federal student loan with a fixed interest rate. There are two types of Stafford Loans, subsidized and unsubsidized. Eligibility for the loan is determined through the FAFSA, and the Financial Aid office notifies students of the specific amounts for which they qualify*. Repayment begins six months after the student graduates or drops below half-time enrollment.
Subsidized Stafford Loan
A need-based loan program with a fixed interest rate of 3.4% (2012-2013) with a 1% origination fee. Both principle and interest are deferred while the student is enrolled at least half-time.
Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
Students who do not qualify for all or part of the need-based Subsidized Stafford Loan may borrow through the Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. The fixed interest rate is 6.8% with a 1% origination fee. The federal government does not make the interest payments on the unsubsidized loan. The student may choose to make interest payments on the loan or allow the interest to accrue. However, the principle of the Unsubsidized Stafford Loan is deferred while the student is enrolled at least half-time.
Current Students Who Have Previously Borrowed a Federal Direct Stafford Loan
Your Stafford Loan eligibility will be indicated on your 2012-13 financial aid award letter* (available online only through your WebAdvising account). You must accept or reject your Stafford Loan(s) on WebAdvising by selecting the 'Accept or Reject my Loans'. You do not need to complete a new Direct Stafford Loan Master Promissory Note or Entrance Counseling.
First Time Federal Direct Stafford Loan Borrowers
If you were offered a Stafford Loan as part of your aid award,* you will be mailed instructions over the summer explaining how to accept or decline your Stafford Loan(s) through Union College's WebAdvising system.
In order for the Stafford Loan(s) to be processed you must complete the following steps:
Accept your offered loan(s) through WebAdvising by selecting 'Accept or Reject My Loans' under the Financial Aid section.
Complete the Direct Stafford Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN)
Complete the online Direct Stafford Loan Entrance Counseling (to be completed once the Master Promissory Note has been completed on the Studentloans.gov website mentioned in the previous step.