Undergraduate Students: Loans
Samford University offers a diverse portfolio of loan options to its undergraduate students and families. The most frequently used loan for undergraduates is the Federal Stafford Loan. We also offer Parent PLUS, Perkins, Private, and Institutional Loans. Students are notified in their award letter how to request their loan funds. Instructions can also be found in the student web portal
. First time Stafford Loan borrowers will be required to complete entrance counseling before their loans will disburse. You may complete your entrance counseling online at StudentLoans.gov
. Your social security number and FAFSA PIN will be needed to complete the counseling.
- Stafford Loan
A student must submit a completed FAFSA to Samford in order to access funding through a Stafford Loan. Stafford loan amounts range from $5,500 per year for freshmen to $7,500 per year for seniors. Another $4,000 - $5,000 may be added if the student is deemed independent. FAFSA results will determine a student’s dependency status.
There are two types of Stafford Loans: Subsidized and Unsubsidized. Both loans have a six month grace period where repayment does not begin until six months after the student graduates or ceases to be enrolled in at least six hours. The Subsidized loan does not accrue any interest while the student is enrolled in at least six hours. This loan is awarded based on need as determined by the FAFSA.
The Unsubsidized Stafford Loan is available to any student who files a FAFSA and is enrolled in at least six hours. This loan is not need based and it requires the borrower to pay a quarterly interest payment.
When you receive a Stafford Loan for the first time, you must complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN). The MPN is a legal document in which you promise to repay your loan and any accrued interest and fees to the US Department of Education. It also explains the terms and conditions of your loan. In most cases, one MPN can be used for Stafford Loans that you receive over several years of study. If you previously signed an MPN to receive a FFEL Program Stafford Loan, you will need to sign a new MPN for a Direct Loan. First time borrowers may complete the MPN online at www.studentloans.gov. You will FAFSA pin number in order to access this website.
For additional information concerning both Stafford Loans please visit the US Department of Education’s website on Stafford Loans. Students are notified in their award letter as to how to request their loan funds. Instructions can also be found in the student web portal.
- Parent PLUS Loan
The Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) is available to any parent with acceptable credit whose student has submitted a FAFSA. These loans are typically used to close the gap between net costs after all other aid has been paid to a student’s account and what a student and/or their family can pay out of pocket. The maximum amount available cannot exceed the student’s cost of attendance and may be limited by the potential borrower’s credit rating.
For additional information concerning the PLUS Loan, please visit the US Department of Education’s website on Parent PLUS Loans. Families are notified in their student’s award letter as to how to request their loan funds. Instructions can also be found in the student web portal.
- Perkins Loan
The Federal Perkins Loan Program is available on a first come, first served basis for those who submit a FAFSA on or before the March 1st priority filing deadline. These funds are limited and are awarded to our neediest of students. As a result, our Pell Grant recipients meeting the deadline are considered first. Those with unmet need are then considered next.
The Perkins Loan is typically awarded in $3,000 per year allotments. It has a 5% interest rate that is subsidized by the government while the student is enrolled in at least six hours. There is also a nine month grace period before repayment begins.
When you receive a Perkins Loan, you must complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN). The MPN is a legal document in which you promise to repay your loan and any accrued interest and fees. It also explains the terms and conditions of your loan. A new MPN must be signed each year. Perkins Loan recipients may sign their MPN online.
- Private Loans
Students or families who may not qualify for federal loans may wish to explore the very last option in financial aid, Private Education Loans. These loans are not federally guaranteed and should only be accessed when all other financial aid options have been exhausted. Before exploring private education loans, please contact your financial aid advisor to verify that all other options have been taken.
If a private education loan is your last or only option, we recommend that you choose a lender with whom you are most comfortable. Students at Samford have been accessing private education loans for several years. During that time a number of lenders have left the business. The lenders listed below are those who have provided funding to our students in the past and continue to do so now. In no way should this list of lenders be considered a list of preferred lenders. These lenders may or may not have the type of loan for which you are looking. We suggest you explore any options with which you are comfortable. Be sure to compare rates, terms and any other particulars before applying. You may use our loan comparison tool linked below to assist you.
Loan Comparison Tool