Financial Aid Details
Amount: Amounts vary
Many families find a Direct PLUS loan is an excellent way for them to pay for college. The Federal Direct PLUS loan enables parents with good credit histories to borrow up to the cost of education minus other financial aid received. This loan has a fixed interest rate of 7.9% and may have an origination fee of up to 3%. Parents may ask for a forbearance to defer payments on this loan while the student is in school. The Federal Direct PLUS loan should be the first option considered when exploring your financing options. If parents are unable or unwilling to borrow, the student may borrow funds from a "private loan".
Private Educational Loans
A private or alternative loan is a credit based loan for students who need additional educational funding beyond the federal, state, or institutional funds awarded in their financial aid package. Always use federal loans first before applying for private loans. Students should avoid lenders that do not require Dordt to certify their loan application. View with suspicion any unsolicited loan offers.
Federal regulations require that we remind you of the following:
- The maximum available federal grant is:
- Pell Grant—$5,500
- SEOG—$4,000 (Award amounts are dependent on federal funding. Awards available at Dordt College may be less)
- ACG Grant—$750 freshmen and $1,300 sophomores
- SMART Grant—$4,000 juniors and seniors
- TEACH Grant—$4,000
The maximum available federal loan is:
- Stafford Loan—$5,500 freshman; $6,500 sophomore; $7,500 junior and seniors. Independent students may receive an additional $4,000 as freshmen and sophomores, and $5,000 as juniors and seniors.
- Perkins Loan—$5,500 undergraduates (award amounts are dependent on federal funding; awards available at Dordt College may be less).
- PLUS Loan—borrower is eligible to borrow cost of attendance minus other financial aid. The PLUS Loan is subject to credit analysis.
If you are considering borrowing a private educational loan to finance your college education, it is important that you carefully compare the loans available to you. Some things to look for are: interest rates, fees, and repayment terms.
Remember that because private loans are credit based a credit history will be run and if your credit does not pass you will need a co-signer to receive that loan. Nearly all students will require a co-signer. The amount of loan you may receive will be based on cost of attendance minus other financial aid received. Always borrow only what you need.
The majority of private educational loans also have variable interest rates which vary with fluctuations in the market. There are some fixed rate loans available, but most of these will require a credit worthy borrower or a co-borrower with a minimum income requirement. Many private educational loans also have processing or origination fees which will be taken off the top of the loan.
Many banks or other agencies specializing in educational loans have private loans which may fit your needs. We will be happy to work with any program you wish to use, but you should carefully check each programís feature to be sure that it is what you want.
Dordt College does not endorse or recommend any particular private loan but we have put together a Preferred Lender List of those lenders our students have chosen most often. They are popular because of their interest rates, customer service, borrower benefits and the other features they offer. This preferred lender list was developed by the Dordt College Financial Aid Office and is annually reviewed to ensure our students will receive the best possible service and benefits. The Dordt College Financial Aid Office adheres to the Code of Conduct as established by the Higher Education Opportunity Act. Dordt College respects the student's right to lender choice and will process a loan with any lender a student may choose. Please realize that a different lender may require a more manual loan application which may delay the disbursement of your funds. Required Truth in Lending Act (TILA) disclosures are provided for each lender on the preferred lender list. TILA disclosures are attached as a PDF file.
Once you apply, our office will be notified and we will certify your loan. In most cases, we handle this electronically, but you can expect that these loans will take several weeks to complete. Should you have any questions about the loan process, please feel free to contact the Financial Aid Office at Dordt College.