Federal Direct Stafford Loans
J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College participates in the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program, offered through the Department of Education. Federal Stafford loans are low-interest, longterm loans.
Students with financial need can obtain a subsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loan.This means the U.S. Department of Education will pay the interest charges to the student’s lender as long as the student is enrolled on at least a half-time basis (6 or more credits) and during a six-month period following enrollment (grace period). At the end of the grace period, repayment of the loan will begin and interest begins to accrue to the student borrower. Students who do not qualify for the subsidized (need-based) Federal Direct Stafford Loan can obtain an unsubsidized (non-need-based) Federal Direct Stafford Loan. Unlike the subsidized Loan, the interest will accrue while the student is enrolled. While enrolled on at least a half-time basis (6 or more credits), the student may pay interest only or have the interest capitalized (added to the principal). See the current interest rates at studentaid.ed.gov.
The Office of Financial Aid must approve all federal loans and reserves the right to refuse loan applications due to academic deficiency or evidence that a student may have difficulty managing loan debt.
How to Apply for a Federal Direct Stafford Loan
If you are a student interested in applying for a Federal Stafford Loan, you will need to follow these steps:
- Complete the FAFSA each year at www.fafsa.ed.gov.
- Apply to Reynolds and be admitted into an approved Program or Plan of Study and be making Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).
- Comply with any information requests from the Office of Financial Aid, such as verification items and tax information.
- Complete the J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College "Federal Direct Stafford Loan Request Form" by the deadline.
- Complete Loan Entrance counseling. All first time borrowers at Reynolds are required to complete Loan Entrance Counseling. You can do this online at www.studentloans.gov.
- Complete your Master e-Promissory Note (MPN) at www.studentloans.gov. Be sure to choose the "Complete New MPN for Student Loans" link. Please Note: You only have to do one Master Promissory Note during your borrowing "career" at Reynolds. Each time you wish to borrow, you must complete the Reynolds “Federal Direct Stafford Loan Request Form”. A new MPN must be submitted if you transfer to another college and borrow there. You would do a new MPN at that college, and upon your return to Reynolds, you would do another MPN.
- Alloow 4-6 weeks for processing, depending on the time of the year.
- Enroll, attend, and maintain at least six credit hours to retain loan eligibility. Students must stay active in at least six credit hours each semester for which they apply for a loan. Students who drop below half-time status risk having their loans canceled and will enter their grace period for repayment.
ALL Federal Direct Stafford loan borrowers must complete an Exit Loan Counseling Session upon graduation or withdraw. Repayment begins six months after a student leaves school because of graduation, other reasons, or drops below half-time level. All loan applicants must not have defaulted on prior student loans or borrowed their maximum lifetime amounts as determined by the Federal government. Students may not borrow more than the annual cost of their education minus other financial aid awarded them. To find out your loan service and keep track of your student loan borrowing, please check the National Student Loan Data System at https://www.nslds.ed.gov/nslds/nslds_SA/.