Loans: Financing Your HSPH Education

 Many students find it necessary to defray the cost of their education (tuition/fees plus living expenses) through borrowing federal and private loans.  For domestic students, it is recommended that federal loan programs be considered first; and fully used as a resource(s) based on the annual/aggregate loan limits before borrowing from private loan programs.

 FEDERAL STUDENT LOAN PROGRAMS

(Automatically reviewed/packaged via Financial Aid Application Process)

SUPPLEMENTAL LOANS – FEDERAL & PRIVATE LOAN PROGRAMS

(Student-initiated Request)

 

Federal Student Loan Programs

 

WILLIAM D. FORD FEDERAL DIRECT LOAN PROGRAM

Home Page: http://www.direct.ed.gov/

Terms & Conditions –

  • Interest Rate
    • 5.41% fixed interest rate – for loans disbursed between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014
    • 6.8% fixed interest rate – for loans disbursed between July 1, 2006 and June 30, 2013
  • Origination Fee
    • A 1.051% origination fee is deducted from the proceeds of the loan at the time of disbursement (for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2013). 
    • A 1.072% origination fee is deducted from the proceeds of the loan at the time of disbursement (for loans disbursed on or after December 1, 2013). 
    • The origination fee was 1% for loans disbursed between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013.
  • Unsubsidized Loan – (NOTE: Effective July 1, 2012 the Subsidized Direct Loan no longer exists) – $33,000 annual maximum depending on the cost of attendance and other financial aid/loans awarded; $224,000 aggregate limit (health professions students annual/aggregate loan limits apply to HSPH students.) The interest accrues while the student is in school as well as during the 6-month grace period.   Students may pay the interest as it accrues OR opt to have the interest capitalized (added to the principal balance). Students must be enrolled at least half-time (10 credits per term) to be eligible.
  • A Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Interview are required documents for disbursement.
  • Exit Counseling is required for all graduating students as well as those whose enrollment falls below half-time status.

For more details regarding the Direct Loan interest rates in previous years, please visit: http://www.finaid.org/loans/scripts/interest.cgi .

For information on Direct Loan Servicers, Direct Loan Repayment Plans, Deferment & Forbearance Options, Loan Forgiveness/Cancellation, and Federal Loan Consolidation  please visit the Loan Debt & Repayment section of our website.

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FEDERAL CARL D. PERKINS LOAN PROGRAM

Harvard Student Loan Office Homepage: https://sfsportal.harvard.edu/admin/slo/index.shtml

Terms & Conditions

  • 5% fixed interest rate; subsidized loan – no interest accrues while the student is enrolled) at least half-time – 10 credits per term) or during the 9-month grace period.
  • $8000 annual maximum; $60,000 aggregate limit
  • Awarded to students with exceptional financial need
  • A Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Interview are required documents for disbursement to the term bill.
  • Exit Counseling is required for all graduating students as well as those whose enrollment falls below half-time status.

For information on the Servicer, deferments/forbearance options, loan forgiveness/cancellation, and loan consolidation, please visit the Loan Debt & Repayment section of our website.

HOW TO APPLY FOR FEDERAL LOANS – Direct Loans and Perkins Loans

  • Complete the FAFSA and HSPH Application at MyFinaid. 
  • Incoming students must be accepted into a degree-granting program before awards can be determined.
  • OSFS will send an email to students who are eligible for federal loans.
  • The award types and amounts can be viewed on the “Awards” Tab in MyFinaid and the loans may be accepted/declined/reduced on the “Accept Awards” Tab in MyFinaid.
  • Students who have accepted their federal loans will be instructed when to complete the necessary online loan documents (MPN and Entrance Interview) required for disbursement to the student term bill. Note: Students will be notified by mid-August and should wait to complete these requirements until prompted by OSFS.

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Supplemental Loans – Federal & Private

 

SUPPLEMENTAL LOANS – FEDERAL & PRIVATE LOANS

Supplemental loans may be borrowed to finance any remaining educational costs not covered by other financial aid such as grants, scholarships, and automatically-packaged federal loan funds (i.e. Direct Subsidized/Unsubsidized Loan and Perkins Loans). A student may apply for a supplemental loan up to the amount of his/her HSPH budget minus any financial aid already awarded.

Supplemental loans (federal or private) are not packaged automatically and are considered self-initiated requests. Students may choose from a number of different loan options and initiate a loan application with the lender. Once all required loan documents are completed, OSFS will certify the loan and the funds will disburse directly to the student’s Harvard term bill.

When considering which supplemental loan to borrow, students should compare programs and decide what factors are the most important to them.

For students that are eligible for federal aid, the Direct GradPLUS Loan should be considered first.

FEDERAL DIRECT GRADPLUS LOAN PROGRAM

Terms & Conditions -

  • Interest Rate
    • 6.41% fixed interest rate - for loans disbursed between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014
    • 7.9% fixed interest rate – for loans disbursed between July 1, 2006 and June 30, 2013
  • Origination Fee
    • A 4.204% origination fee is deducted from the proceeds of the loan at the time of disbursement (for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2013). 
    • A 4.288% origination fee is deducted from the proceeds of the loan at the time of disbursement (for loans disbursed on or after December 1, 2013). 
    • The origination fee was 4% for loans disbursed between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013.
  • Unsubsidized loan – interest accrues over the life of the loan
  • Applicants must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident and must have a satisfactory credit history; so unlike other federal loans, students must pass a credit check.
  • A Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Interview are required documents for disbursement.
  • Individuals who apply and are denied due to credit issues are eligible to obtain an endorser (co-signer) and reapply.

For more information on deferment, forbearance, consolidation, and cancellation options, please visit our Loan Debt & Repayment section of our website.

How to Apply for the Direct GradPLUS

  • Applicants must complete and return a Credit Check Authorization Form.
  • Students who pass the credit check will be notified of approval.
  • Instructions will be emailed to students who need to complete the online Entrance Interview and/or MPN.   Note: Students should wait to complete these requirements until prompted by OSFS.

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PRIVATE LOAN PROGRAMS

A list of lenders who responded to the University’s Request for Proposal and offer private education loans to domestic students may be found at our central ISite, Private Loans for Graduate and Professional Students.  While some loan programs do not require a U.S. co-signer, applying with an eligible U.S. cosigner may offer more favorable terms and conditions.  Due to the volatile economic climate, rates and terms may change throughout the year.  Therefore we strongly recommend students review the lenders’ websites directly to access the most up to date information on the supplemental private loan programs.   In addition, loan disclosures can be found on the Private Loan Disclosures page.

Harvard graduate and professional students are not required to use the lenders on this list.

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