Samford University

Graduate Students: Loans

Samford University offers a diverse portfolio of loan options to its graduate students. The most frequently used loan for graduate students is the Federal Stafford Loan. We also offer Grad PLUS, Health Professions, and Private Education Loans. Students are notified in their award letter how to request their loan funds. 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 Your social security number and FAFSA PIN will be needed to complete the counseling.
Graduate Stafford Loan

A student must submit a completed FAFSA to Samford in order to access funding through a Stafford Loan.  Stafford Loan amounts vary by program of study, with most students qualifying for up to $20,500 per year.  First, second and third year Pharmacy students may receive an additional $12,500 per year and fourth year Pharmacy students may receive $16,667 in addition to the $20,500 base loan.

Eligibility for the Stafford Loan is determined by the FAFSA and the number of hours in which the student is enrolled.  A student must be enrolled at least half-time to be eligible.  Please consult with your Samford financial aid advisor to determine how many hours constitutes half-time status.

When you receive a Stafford Loan for the first time at Samford, 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 U.S. Department of Education.  It also explains the terms and conditions of your loan.  IN most cases, one MPN may be used for Stafford Loans you receive over multiple years of study at Samford.  You may sign your MPN at  You will need your FAFSA PIN# to access the site. 

For additional information concerning the Federal Direct Stafford Loan Program, please visit the U.S. Department of Education's website for Stafford Loans or contact the Samford Office of Financial Aid.

Grad PLUS Loan

The Graduate PLUS Loan is available to any graduate student with acceptable credit who 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 can pay out of pocket.  The maximum amount available may not exceed the student's cost of attendance and may be limited by the borrower's credit rating.

For additional information concerning the Grad PLUS Loan, please visit the U.S. Department of Education's website on Grad PLUS Loans or contact your advisor in the Samford Office of Financial Aid.

Health Professions Loan
Students enrolled in the McWhorter School of Pharmacy at Samford may be eligible for a Federal Health Professions Loan. Please contact your advisor in the Samford Office of Financial Aid for additional information and requirements.
Nurse Faculty Loan

Eligibility for the Nurse Faculty Loan is determined by the Office of Financial Aid and the Graduate School of Nursing.  Only students enrolled in eligible programs may be offered the NFL.  A FAFSA application is required to determine a student’s eligibility.  Funds are limited and are awarded on a first come first serve basis.  Priority is given to currently enrolled graduate nursing students.  For information about how to begin the application process for the NFL, please contact the School of Nursing.


Private Education Loan

Students or families who may not qualify for federal loans may wish to explore 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 utilized.

If a private education loan is an option for you, 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 "preferred lenders list". These lenders may or may not have the type of loan for which you are looking. However, 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 the loan comparison tool below to assist you.

Loan Comparison Tool