Student Loans

A loan is financial assistance that enables students and/or parents to borrow money from the federal government or a private lender. These loans must be repaid.  Borrowers are responsible for signing a Master Promissory Note for each loan program.  When signed, the Master Promissory Note is a binding, legal document through which the borrower agrees to repay the loan. The promissory note should be read carefully and a copy retained for the borrower’s records. Please note students who are non-degree seeking or do not qualify for federal assistance are only eligible for private loans in most cases. 

Students must be enrolled at least half-time (6 undergraduate hours, 4.5 graduate hours) each term to qualify for federal loans.  If you request a loan, we will always recommend the best loan program for which you are eligible.  Not all students are eligible to borrow from all loan programs.

 

Institutional Code of Conduct for Education Loans

 

Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan

A Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan is awarded to undergraduate students on the basis of financial need.  Students will not be charged any interest prior to repayment or during any authorized periods of deferment. During deferment, the federal government pays the interest on the loan until the time of repayment. Payment is automatically deferred until the borrower is no longer enrolled on at least half-time basis. At the time the borrower is no longer enrolled half-time, a six month grace period begins prior to entering repayment.

You may check current Interest rates and loan fees for Direct Loans here.

            Eligibility

  • You must complete the FAFSA.
  • You must have financial need as determined by the results of the FAFSA.
  • You must be enrolled at least half-time at AUM.
  • You must meet and maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress.
  • You must meet all other financial aid eligibility requirements.
  • You may not exceed annual or lifetime aggregate loan limits.  Annual and aggregate loan limits available here.
  • You may not have received Federal Direct Subsidized Loans for more than 150% of the length of your academic program. (Applicable to borrowers receiving first loan on or after July 1, 2013).

 

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan

A Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan may be awarded to undergraduate and/or graduate students.  The loan is not awarded on the basis of financial need.  Students are responsible for any accruing interest during in-school and deferment periods.  Interest accruing during those periods may be paid or capitalized as agreed by the borrower and lender.  You may check current Interest rates and loan fees for Direct Loans here.

Payment is automatically deferred until the borrower is no longer enrolled at least half-time.  At the time the borrower is no longer enrolled half-time, a six month grace period begins prior to entering repayment.  Interest on Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans continues to accrue during the grace period.

            Eligibility

 

Federal Direct PLUS Loans

The federal Direct PLUS program is a popular financing option for graduate students, and parents of undergraduate students.  You may borrow up to the Cost of Attendance (excluding any other financial aid).  All funds are received electronically and applied to the student’s AUM student account to pay university authorized charges.  You may check current interest rates and loan fees for Direct Loans here.

Undergraduate students whose parents do not qualify for a Direct PLUS Loan may request additional loan funds in the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan Program. The funds may be requested by contacting the Office of Financial Aid after receiving notification the Direct PLUS has been declined.

            Eligibility

  • The student must complete the FAFSA.
  • The student must meet and maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress.
  • The student must meet all other financial aid eligibility requirements.
  • Graduate students must complete and submit a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan Request Form.
  • Parent of undergraduate students must complete and submit a Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan Request Form.
  • Parent must not have defaulted on any previous federal student or parent loans.
  • Parent must be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen.
  • The student must be enrolled at least half-time (6 undergraduate hours, 4.5 graduate hours) at AUM.
  • Borrower must have good credit history.  Getting an endorser is an option if credit history is not sufficient to pass credit check.

Loan Repayment

  • For graduate students, repayment begins after the loan is fully disbursed and lasts ten years.  You can postpone payments of your Direct PLUS Loan while you are in school with an in-school deferment.  
  • For parents of undergraduate students, repayment begins within after your loan is fully disbursed and lasts ten years.  Parent borrowers may contact the Direct Loan Servicing Center to request deferment of monthly payments while the student is in school.

When it comes to repaying your federal student loan, there’s a lot to consider.  Understanding the importance of repayment and the repayment details can save you time and money. 

Loan Disbursement Rules

All Federal Direct Loans at AUM are disbursed in two payments.  Loans awarded for a single semester are disbursed in two equal payments over the semester awarded:  the first payment is disbursed at the beginning of the term or loan period, and the second payment is disbursed at the midpoint of the term or loan period.   However, Direct Stafford Loan funds for first-time, first-year undergraduate student borrowers may not be released until 30 days after the first day of classes for their first semester.  Loan funds will be applied directly to your AUM student account.

Undergraduate students must be enrolled for at least 6 hours for the Direct Stafford Loan and Direct PLUS Loan funds to be disbursed.  Graduate borrowers must be enrolled at least 4.5  hours of graduate coursework for federal loan funds to be disbursed.
 
A Master Promissory Note (MPN) or agreement to repay the loan must be completed and signed prior to the loan approval and disbursement process.
 
Students must also complete online Federal Direct Stafford Loan Entrance Counseling before funds can be disbursed.

Terms and Conditions of Title IV, HEA Loans

Federal Perkins Loan

The Perkins Loan is a low interest loan awarded to both undergraduate and graduate students on the basis of financial need.  The loan is funded by the federal government, but the school acts as the lender.  AUM contracts with Campus Partners to service repayment of the loan funds, therefore, payments are made through Campus Partners.  Question concerning repayment on the Perkins Loan may be directed to the Office of Student Accounts at (334) 244-3286.

The interest rate on the Perkins Loan is fixed at 5%.  Interest will begin to accrue 9 months after you graduate or you drop below half-time enrollment.  No payments required while in school.  Repayment begins nine months after you graduate or drop below half-time enrollment and lasts up to ten years, with a minimum monthly payment of $50.  You can apply for deferment of your repayment while enrolled in a graduate or professional program or if you become unemployed.

 Funding for the Perkins Loan is limited each year, therefore, not all eligible aid applicants can be offered an award from the program.  Priority consideration during the initial awarding period is given to students that complete the FAFSA by the March 1st priority date.

Loan funds are disbursed beginning on the first day of class each semester to eligible awarded recipients.

            Eligibility

  • You must complete the FAFSA.
  • You must have financial need as determined by the results of the FAFSA.
  • You must be enrolled at least half-time at AUM.
  • You must meet and maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress.
  • You must meet all other financial aid eligibility requirements.
  • You may not exceed the $5,500 annual limit or the $27,500 lifetime aggregate loan limits.  Annual awards are typically be less than the annual limit to allow more recipients.

PLEASE NOTE:  Effective December 18, 2015 the decision to wind down this program through the final provisions detailed within the updated Extension Act.  New qualifying undergraduate borrowers can be awarded through September 30, 2017 with the possibility of a Spring 2018 disbursement.

Terms and conditions of Federal Perkins Loans

National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS)

HEOA Sec. 489 amended HEA Sec. 485B(d)(4) (20 U.S.C. 1092b)

Institutions that enter into an agreement with a potential student, student, or parent of a student regarding a Title IV, HEA loan are required to inform the student or parent that the loan will be submitted to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS), and will be accessible by guaranty agencies, lenders, and institutions determined to be authorized users of the data system.

 

Private Student Loans

Private student loans should be considered "last resort" opportunities.  You should utilize all other financing options before applying for a private product.  Remember, federal student loan programs are less expensive that private loans and should be considered first.  Private loan interest typically begins accruing immediately and fluctuates with market rates.  Undergraduate private loan borrowers will typically be required to have a cosigner. 

The lender, not AUM, determines eligibility for a private student loan.  However, the University is required to certify your enrollment and calculate the amount you can borrow.  The total loan amount is limited to cost of education minus financial assistance.  Private student loan checks are mailed directly to the AUM Cashier Office, and require both the university and student must endorse the check for the funds to be applied to the student AUM account.

The university does not endorse or recommend any specific private loan lenders or products. To link to a nonprofit, independent website than provides information about private student loan programs and offers a comparison calculator, click here