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College Loans, Grants and Scholarships

Federal Loan Programs

Supplemental college loans are a major form of self-help aid for college students. Any money borrowed, including any interest and fees accrued, must be repaid. Repayment usually begins about 6 months after a student’s last date of attendance.  Interest rates vary, depending on the type of loan. Student must complete FAFSA application each year to apply for and continue receiving Federal Loans.

Federal Subsidized Direct Loans

Eligibility: Available to undergraduate students.

  • Student must be enrolled for at least 6 credits and must demonstrate financial need as defined by federal regulations to receive these supplemental college loans.
  • Possible Amounts: Loan limits depend on grade level in school and dependency status.

Loan has a fixed interest rate (see chart below) and a 1.073% Origination fee for loans disbursed after 10/1/14.

Loan Borrower Interest rate for loans first disbursed 7/1/14 and before 7/1/15 Interest rate for loans first disbursed 7/1/15 and before 7/1/16
Direct Subsidized Loans Undergraduate 4.66% 4.29%
Direct Unsubsidized Loans Undergraduate 4.66% 4.29%
Direct Unsubsidized Loans Graduate or Professional 6.21% 5.84%
Direct PLUS Loans Parents, Graduate or Professional 7.21% 6.84%

College Loans and Grants Application Process

Complete the Direct Loan Master Promissory Note online at www.studentloans.gov and return the signed award letter to the Financial Aid Office.

  • First-time borrowers at Five Towns College must also complete Entrance Counseling at the above website prior to disbursement of Direct Loan funds.
  • Repayment Information: Student enters repayment six months after the student graduates, withdraws or falls below half-time enrollment status.

Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loans

Eligibility: Available to undergraduate and graduate students. Financial need is not necessary.

  • Undergraduate students must be enrolled for at least 6 credits. Graduate students must be enrolled at least half-time.
  • Possible Amounts: Loan limits depend on grade level in school, and dependency status.
  • Loan has a 1.073% Origination fee for loans disbursed after 10/1/14.
  • Interest accrues immediately from the date of issuance of the loan.
  • Application Process: Complete the Direct Loan Master Promissory Note online at www.studentloans.gov and return signed award letter to the Financial Aid Office.
  • First-time borrowers at Five Towns College must also complete an entrance counseling prior to disbursement of Direct funds.
  • Repayment Information: Student enters repayment six months after the student graduates, withdraws or falls below half-time enrollment status.

The following chart shows the annual and aggregate limits for subsidized and unsubsidized loans:

Year Dependent Students* Independent Students**
First-Year Undergraduate Annual Loan Limit $5,500—No more than $3,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $9,500—No more than $3,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.
Second-Year Undergraduate Annual Loan Limit $6,500—No more than $4,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $10,500—No more than $4,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.
Third-Year and Beyond Undergraduate Annual Loan Limit $7,500—No more than $5,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $12,500—No more than $5,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.
Graduate or Professional Students Annual Loan Limit Not Applicable (all graduate and professional students are considered independent) $20,500 (unsubsidized only)
Subsidized and Unsubsidized Aggregate Loan Limit $31,000—No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $57,500 for undergraduates—No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $138,500 for graduate or professional students. The graduate aggregate limit includes all federal loans received for undergraduate study.

*except students whose parents are unable to obtain PLUS Loans
**and dependent undergraduate students whose parents are unable to obtain PLUS Loans

Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan (Undergraduate Dependent Student)

Eligibility: PLUS Loans are available to parents of dependent students. Parents who have no adverse credit history are eligible for PLUS Loans. Student must be enrolled for at least 6 credits to receive these supplemental college loans.

  • Possible Amounts: Maximum amount of eligibility is determined by the cost of attendance less any financial aid awarded to the student.
  • Application Process: Complete the Direct Parent Loan Application and return to the Financial Aid Office.
  • Once approved, you must also complete the PLUS Master Promissory Note at www.studentloans.gov.
  • For additional information contact the Financial Aid Office.
  • Eligible parents must re-apply for the Federal PLUS loan each academic year.
  • Repayment Information: Parents enter repayment 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed, unless you choose to have the loan deferred.
  • Interest begins to accrue from the date proceeds are sent to Five Towns College.

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan (GradPLUS)

Eligibility: Available to Graduate and professional degree students. Applicants must not have an adverse credit history, and must be enrolled at least half-time each semester.

  • Possible Amounts: Maximum amount of eligibility is determined by the cost of attendance less any financial aid awarded to the student.
  • Application Process: Complete the FAFSA and request a Direct PLUS loan at www.studentloans.gov.
  • Once approved, complete the GradPLUS Master Promissory Note at the above website.
  • For additional information contact the Financial Aid Office.
  • Renewal Requirements: Eligible students must file the FAFSA and PLUS loan request each academic year.
  • In addition, the student must have utilized maximum yearly federal graduate Direct Unsubsidized loan eligibility before applying for a Graduate/Professional Plus loan.
  • Repayment Information: Repayment begins on the date of the last disbursement of the loan. *See chart above for current interest rates.

Important Information About Federal Student Loans

Eligibility: Supplemental college loans are available to Graduate and professional degree students. Applicants must not have an adverse credit history, and must be enrolled at least half-time each semester.

  • All first-time borrowers must complete a federally mandated entrance counseling session electronically before receiving any loan proceeds.
  • Students receiving, Federal Direct loans or Federal Graduate PLUS loan, can satisfy this requirement only at www.studentloans.gov.
  • Students who are recipients of these loans must sign a Master Promissory Note for the first year they are receiving any type of Federal loan.

Alternative Loans

Undergraduate and Graduate Students
Private Education Loans, also known as Alternative Education Loans, help bridge the gap between the actual cost of your education and the limited amount the government allows you to borrow in its programs. Private loans are offered by private lenders and there are no federal forms to complete.

Five Towns College does not prefer, recommend, promote, endorse, or suggest any specific lenders. We strongly encourage you to review each lender’s information to determine which benefits and terms are best for you now and in the future. You are not required to borrow from any specific lender and there is no penalty for choosing one lender over another.

Parents at Five Towns College use the following lender:

For assistance in comparing private loans please visit finaid.org/loans/privateloan.phtml. We strongly encourage you to review each of the lender’s information to determine which benefits and terms are best for you.

Federal Grants and Aid

There are a few differences between college loans and grants. Similar to supplemental college loans, grants are awarded based on eligibility. However it’s important to fully understand the differences between loans and grants for college, as the differences play a key role in a student’s financial responsibilities following graduation.

To be eligible for federal financial aid you must:

  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress
  • Be a U. S. citizen or an eligible non-citizen
  • Have no debt from a defaulted guaranteed education loan
  • Owe no refund on a federal Pell grant or Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity grant
  • Meet selective services requirements
  • Be enrolled as a regular student in an eligible program
  • Have a high school diploma or GED (general educational diploma) certificate or you must pass an independently administered test approved by the U. S. Department of Education, or meet other standards your state establishes that are approved by the department.

Pell Grant

Eligibility: Available to undergraduate eligible full-time or part-time students. Eligibility is based on financial need and funding.

  • Student must meet federal academic standards to receive grant.
  • Possible Amounts: Award amount is based on need and fund availability.
  • Application Renewal Requirements: Renewal is not automatic. Student must file the FAFSA each year and demonstrate financial need.

Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (SEOG)

Eligibility: Students with great financial need who are eligible for a Pell Grant may be awarded an SEOG grant in addition to their Pell Grant.

  • Possible Amounts: Award amount depends on need and the availability of federal funds.
  • Application Renewal Requirements: Complete the FAFSA each year.

Federal Work-Study Program

Eligibility: Students with demonstrated financial need are allocated a specific amount of money they may earn by working up to 20 hours per week in various offices on and off campus.

  • Possible Amounts: Students may earn up to a maximum award amount allocated to them.
  • Renewal Requirements: Complete the FAFSA each year and contact the Financial Aid Office for a separate application.
  • Job Opportunities: Employment opportunities are available on and off campus.

Please be advised that all federal financial aid programs are subject to change based on government allocations and regulations. The Financial Aid Office reserves the right to revoke any aid offer if there is any evidence that the conditions of enrollment status, financial need, or merit are not met.

New York Financial Aid Programs

Tuition Assistance Program (TAP)

New York State residents who are matriculated full-time students (12 credits or more per semester at Five Towns College) are eligible for this grant. Eligibility is based on the family’s New York State net taxable income.

  • Awards of up to $5,165 per year for first-time TAP recipients.
  • The actual amount of the award will appear on your TAP Award Certificate provided by Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC).
  • Application Process: Complete the TAP Application each year. If you file the FAFSA electronically, you will be linked to the HESC website to complete the Express TAP application. You may visit www.hesc.org for more information.

To be eligible for TAP, you must:

  • Be a United States citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • Be a legal resident of New York state
  • Study at an approved postsecondary institution in New York state
  • Have graduated from high school, have a GED, or have passed a federally-approved exam that demonstrates the student can benefit from the education offered
  • Be matriculated in an approved program of study and be in good academic standing
  • Have at least a cumulative “C” average after receipt of two annual payments
  • Be charged at least $200 tuition per year
  • Not be in default on a federal student loan or on any repayment of state awards
  • Meet income eligibility limitations.

Aid for Part-Time Students (APTS)

New York State residents who are matriculated at Five Towns College and are currently registered for part-time study (3-11 credits) are eligible to apply for this state grant.

  • Possible Amounts: Awards for qualified students are up to $2,000 per academic year, depending upon tuition charges and funds availability.
  • Application Process: Complete the APTS application for fall or spring semester at the Financial Aid office each academic year.
  • Contact the Financial Aid office for application deadlines and requirements.

Veterans Benefits

As a Yellow Ribbon School, Five Towns College has agreed to make additional funds available for your education program without an additional charge to your GI Bill entitlement. The College voluntarily entered into a Yellow Ribbon Agreement with the VA and chose the amount of tuition and fees that will be contributed. The VA matches that amount and issues payments directly to the College.

For additional information about this program, contact the Registrar Office or call the Department of Veterans Affairs at 1.888.442.4551. Also, visit their web site at U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. For information on similar Five Towns programs, visit our Veterans Admissions page.

Scholarships

Scholarships differ from college loans and grants in that the student is not tasked with repaying the funds after graduation. Five Towns College offers assistance to students in the form of awards, scholarships and part-time employment.

Incoming students do not need to fill out a separate application for Five Towns College scholarships. Students are automatically considered for scholarships upon the submission and review of their application. All scholarship notifications are mailed to the student following the student’s acceptance letter. All scholarships are contingent upon the student’s filing the FAFSA and completing the Financial Aid process.

Continuing students who would like to apply for a scholarship must complete a scholarship application, submit two recommendations from teachers at the College, be full-time students and complete the Financial Aid process. Continuing students have a deadline of April 30th to apply for a scholarship for the upcoming fall semester.

Scholarship awards are based on various eligibility requirements such as academic achievement, talent, financial need, and community service work. For more information and a listing of all available scholarships, refer to the Five Towns College Catalog or visit our Scholarships page.