Loans Overview

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A loan is financial aid that must be repaid with interest. Loans are offered based on financial need assessment as determined by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Any student may obtain a federal direct loan; however, the type of loan will be determined by the student's need assessment. Cedarville University participates in the following loan programs:

Common Questions on Loan Fees » Loan Interest Rate Table »

Federal direct loans are fixed-rate, low interest loans available to degree-seeking students attending Cedarville at least half-time. These loans are the most common source of college loan funding.

Direct loans have annual loan limits based on a student's class status:

  • Freshmen $5,500 (up to $3,500 may be subsidized)
  • Sophomores $6,500 (up to $4,500 may be subsidized)
  • Juniors $7,500 (up to $5,500 may be subsidized)
  • Seniors $7,500 (up to $5,500 may be subsidized)

Federal direct loan - Subsidized: The federal government pays the interest on this loan while the student is enrolled at least half-time. The student must have financial need to qualify for a subsidized loan. There is no penalty for early repayment.

Federal direct loan - Unsubsidized: The student will be charged interest from the time the loan is disbursed until it is paid in full. The student may pay the interest while enrolled in school. Any unpaid interest will be capitalized (added to the loan principal amount) at the time repayment begins. There is no penalty for early repayment.

For assistance with Steps 3 and 4 below, view Detailed Instructions for Completing Entrance Counseling and MPN.

1 Complete the FAFSA

Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA): www.fafsa.ed.gov

  • A student cannot receive a federal direct loan unless they complete the FAFSA process.

2 eAward Notification

Record your 'loan decisions' (to either 'Accept' or 'Reject') at MyFinancialAid.

  • Depending on a student's situation, one or more direct loans may be a part of their financial aid package.
  • Carefully review the direct loans which are part of your financial aid package and either 'accept' or 'reject' each at MyFinancialAid.

Note: A student's decision to 'accept' or 'reject' a loan is not a one-time, final decision (meaning, the borrower can change their mind). For example, perhaps the initial decision is to 'reject' the student direct loan. However, later it becomes apparent that the loan funds are needed as part of the payment plan. The student can simply go back to MyFinancialAid and change their decision from 'reject' to 'accept.' The loan would then be processed as an 'accepted' loan once all other required documents are in place (see below). Decisions on loans become 'final' at the end of the academic/financial aid year (or the last day of active enrollment).

3 Entrance Counseling

All first-time borrowers must complete Entrance Counseling to obtain a direct loan.

  • Students who completed Entrance Counseling for a direct loan in a prior year have met this federal requirement.
  • Transfer students who received direct loan funds at another college should notify the financial aid office. Transfer students, who previously borrowed a direct loan, have met this federal requirement as long as Cedarville is able to confirm their prior Entrance Counseling.
  • Graduate/Professional students: You need to complete Entrance Counseling as a "Graduate or Professional Student at www.studentloans.gov (if you completed Entrance Counseling as an undergraduate you need to complete again, this time as a graduate/professional student).

4 Master Promissory Note

All first-time borrowers must complete a student Master Promissory Note to obtain a direct loan.

  • Students who completed a Master Promissory Note and received direct loan funds in a prior year have met this federal requirement.
  • Transfer students who received direct loan funds at another college should notify the financial aid office. Transfer students, who previously borrowed a direct loan, have met this federal requirement as long as Cedarville is able to confirm their prior Master Promissory Note.
  • Graduate/Professional students:  You only need to complete a new Student MPN if your undergraduate Student MPN expired or if you have never borrowed from the federal Direct Loan program.

The Parent PLUS direct loan is an option available to parents of dependent undergraduate students (as determined by the FAFSA) to help pay their child's college expenses. The annual limit on a Parent PLUS loan is equal to the student's cost of attendance minus any other financial aid the student receives. For example, if the cost of attendance is $32,000 and the student receives $18,000 in other financial aid, the student's parent can request up to $14,000.

Note 1: The same parent must complete steps 3-5 below (PLUS Request, MPN, Authorization) when applying for a Parent PLUS loan.

Note 2: Steps 1, 2, 3, and 5 must be completed each year. Step 4 is a one time process (unless the parent borrower was required to obtain an 'endorser' for their Parent PLUS loan).

Note 3: For assistance with Steps 3, 4 and 5 below, view Detailed Instructions for Completing PLUS Request, MPN and PLUS Authorization.

1 Complete the FAFSA

A Parent PLUS loan cannot be obtained unless the student completes the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

  • In addition to the FAFSA, all of the following steps must also be completed before Parent PLUS loan funds will disburse to the student's account.

2 eAward Notification

The student needs to record the decision to either 'accept' or 'reject' the Parent PLUS loan at MyFinancialAid.

3 PLUS Request Process

Beginning May 1st each academic year, the parent borrower is encouraged to complete the PLUS Request Process at www.studentloans.gov. This PLUS application triggers a basic credit check; once this PLUS application is submitted the parent will immediately receive either an 'Accepted' or 'Declined' credit decision.

Note: This credit decision is good for 90 days; therefore, it is important that steps 4 and 5 below are completed about the same time. This will allow the financial aid office to originate the Parent PLUS loan before the 'Accepted' credit decision expires.

4 Master Promissory Note

If the parent receives an 'Accepted' credit decision when completing step 3, they must then complete the Master Promissory Note, which is processed at the same website: www.studentloans.gov.

Note: A Parent PLUS Master Promissory Note is both parent and student specific and normally will be good for 10 years once successfully completed for each individual child/student.

5 Parent Authorization Form

The same parent must also complete the online Parent Authorization Form (this is a Cedarville webpage) to specify the details (the loan amount and term) of their Parent PLUS loan.

The Graduate PLUS Loan is an option available to graduate or professional students to help pay their education expenses. The annual limit on a Graduate PLUS Loan is equal to the cost of attendance minus any other financial aid the student receives. For example, if the cost of attendance is $35,500 and the student receives $20,500 in other financial aid, the student can request up to $15,000.

Note 1: In addition to the FAFSA and eAward, the graduate/professional student must also complete steps 3-6 below (PLUS Request, Grad PLUS MPN, Grad Entrance Counseling, and the Grad Plus Authorization) when applying for a Graduate PLUS loan.

Note 2: Steps 1, 2, 3 and 6 must be completed every year. Steps 4 and are a one time process (unless the graduate student is required to obtain an 'Endorser' for their Grad PLUS loan).

1 Complete the FAFSA

A Graduate PLUS loan cannot be obtained unless the student completes the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

  • In addition to the FAFSA, all of the following steps must also be completed before Graduate PLUS loan funds will disburse to the student's account.

2 eAward Notification

The student needs to 'Accept' the Graduate PLUS Loan on their eAward at MyFinancialAid.

3 PLUS Request Process

Beginning May 1st each academic year, the student is encouraged to complete the Graduate PLUS Request Process via the Department of Education’s website. This application triggers a credit check; once this application is submitted the student will immediately receive a 'Credit Decision' indicating either an 'Accepted' or 'Declined' decision.

Note: This credit decision is good for 90 days; therefore, it is important that steps 4, 5 and 6 below are completed about the same time. This will allow the financial aid office to originate the Graduate PLUS loan before the credit decision expires.

4 Grad PLUS Master Promissory Note

If the student receives an 'Accepted' credit decision when completing step 2, they must then complete the Grad PLUS Master Promissory Note, which is also located on the Department of Education’s website.

Note: A Graduate PLUS Master Promissory Note will be good for 10 years once successfully completed for each individual student. This MPN is separate and distinct the MPN completed for the Graduate Unsubsidized Direct Loan.

5 Graduate Entrance Counseling

All first-time borrowers at the graduate/professional level must complete Graduate Entrance Counseling to obtain a Graduate PLUS direct loan. Graduate Entrance Counseling is distinct from Undergraduate Entrance Counseling.

  • Students who completed Graduate Entrance Counseling for a direct loan in a prior year have met this federal requirement.
  • Graduate Transfer students who received direct loan funds at the graduate/professional level at another college should notify the financial aid office. If the financial aid is able to confirm that Graduate Entrance Counseling was done to receive Graduate direct loan funds, then this requirement would be met.
  • Graduate/Professional students: You need to complete Entrance Counseling as a "Graduate or Professional Student at www.student.loans.gov.
  • NOTE: Graduate Entrance Counseling is done one time to meet the requirements for receipt of either Graduate Unsubsidized Student Loan funds or Graduate PLUS Loan funds.

6 Graduate PLUS Authorization Form

Completed online at Cedarville's webpage, the graduate/professional student must also complete the Graduate PLUS Authorization Form to specify the details (the loan amount and term) of their Graduate PLUS loan.

Alternative loans are credit-based private loans (not part of the federal government loan program) that are obtained through a lending institution. The amount a student may borrow through an alternative loan is up to the full cost of attendance minus other aid. Cedarville University will process alternative loans from any lender you choose.

1 Select Lender

Select a lender and complete their online application.

2 Lender will Contact School

After your online application is processed, the lender will contact Cedarville for certification.

3 Loan Funds Disbursed

Loan funds will be disbursed upon loan approval.

The Federal Perkins loan is awarded to students who demonstrate the highest financial need; traditionally to Pell Grant recipients. The Perkins Loan, similar to the Subsidized Stafford Loan, is subsidized meaning it is interest free while the student is enrolled at least half-time. Interest does not start to accrue until after the grace period (9 months). The standard Perkins Loan amount is $3,000 per year and the interest rate is currently fixed at 5%.

1 Complete the FAFSA

Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA): www.fafsa.gov

2 eAward Notification

Accept your Perkins Loan at MyFinancialAid.

  • Once you accept your Perkins Loan, the status will be updated to "Pending" until you complete Step 3 below.

3 Complete Paperwork

Students who have accepted a Perkins Loan will receive an email from SignMyLoan directing them to their website to complete a Master Promissory Note, Entrance Counseling and Loan Disclosure Documents. Access to the SignMyLoan website will be available beginning in July for the upcoming academic year.

The Federal Nursing Loan is awarded to nursing majors who are in their sophomore, junior, or senior year and who demonstrate financial need. The Nursing Loan is similar to the Perkins and the Subsidized Stafford Loan in that the loan is interest-free while the student is enrolled at least half-time. Interest does not start to accrue until after the grace period (9 months). The standard Nursing Loan amount is $3,300 for sophomores and $5,200 for juniors and seniors (freshmen students are not eligible for this loan). The interest rate is currently fixed at 5%.

1 Complete the FAFSA

Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA): www.fafsa.gov

2 eAward Notification

Accept your Nursing Loan at MyFinancialAid.

  • Once you accept your Nursing Loan, the status will be updated to "Pending" until you complete Step 3 below.

3 Complete Paperwork

Students who have accepted a Nursing Loan will receive an email from SignMyLoan directing them to their website to complete a Master Promissory Note, Entrance Counseling and Loan Disclosure Documents. Access to the SignMyLoan website will be available beginning in July for the upcoming academic year.

The Charles E. Schell Foundation, Fifth Third Bank Trustee loan is for junior and senior students with demonstrated financial need who are:

  • citizens who are residents of Ohio, Kentucky, or West Virginia
  • between the ages of 18 thru 25
  • loyal to the United States and its institutions including the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines
  • honest, upright, intelligent, and of practical appearance
  • maintain a minimum university Cum GPA of 2.0 or higher

An exit interview will be required for recipients of this loan.

1 Complete the FAFSA

Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA): www.fafsa.gov

2 Online Application

Fill out the online application.

3 eAward Notification

Accept your loan at MyFinancialAid.

4 Complete Paperwork

Sign promissory note annually in the Financial Aid Office when you arrive on campus in August.