Nov 23, 2020

Dordt's Loan Default Rate Significantly Better than National Average

Dordt's Loan Default Rate shows to be significantly better than the national average.

The student loan default rate measures the percentage of students who are unable to make the required payments on their student loans. Dordt University’s loan default rate is 1.8 percent, which is significantly better than the national average of 9.7 percent. Dordt’s low loan default rate of 1.8 percent shows that Dordt students who take out student loans to pay for their college education are very likely to repay the loan on time.

There are many reasons why Dordt students are able to make their loan payments on time, says Harlan Harmelink, Dordt’s director of financial aid.

“Here at Dordt, we have a very competitive level of indebtedness at graduation. This makes it more manageable to pay off their loans while balancing other living expenses.”

The last two years, the average debt load for Dordt students has been approximately $22,500. Many families find this to be encouraging when analyzing the financial commitment for Dordt’s approximately $43,000 in room and board per year.

Harmelink also credits Dordt’s career outcome rate, which was 99 percent for the class of 2019.

“This puts our students in a position to repay their loans when they start coming due six months after graduation,” he says.

Finally, Dordt students learn a sense of fiscal responsibility from both their families and time at Dordt. Dordt seeks to help students develop skills and traits beyond just their academics, looking at all areas of life.

The Dordt Financial Aid Office seeks to equip students to be well-informed as they make financial aid decisions, encouraging them to apply for scholarships and consider student worker positions or part-time jobs in the community.

Students are encouraged to apply for donor-funded scholarships, which total over $1.6 million in aid per year. Many students may find they can earn approximately $14,000 to $15,000 in grants and scholarships—not including federal or state grants. With those additional aspects, many students find their financial aid number even higher.

Dordt’s Financial Aid Office encourages students to consider additional outlets beyond Dordt for scholarships and grants, such as regional scholarships like Dollars for Scholars, or scholarships available through local banks, libraries, hospitals, or even parent employers.

As an institution of higher education committed to the Reformed Christian perspective, Dordt University equips students, faculty, alumni, and the broader community to work toward Christ-centered renewal in all aspects of contemporary life. Dordt, located in Sioux Center, Iowa, is a comprehensive university named to the best college lists by The Wall Street Journal,, Washington Monthly, and Princeton Review.

A picture of campus behind yellow prairie flowers