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Skidmore College
Financial Aid Office

Federal Direct Student Loan Program Information

How is my loan eligibility determined?

Your official class standing determines your maximum loan eligibility. Loan limits for the academic year consists of both the Federal Direct Student Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loan programs. Freshmen may qualify for up to $5500, sophomores up to $6500, juniors and seniors up to $7500. At least $2,000 of the total loan limit will be from the Federal Direct Student Unsubsidized Loan program. The Financial Aid Office will review the information received from your processed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), Federal Income Tax Returns for both parents and students (including all schedules filed and W-2's), and a Federal Verification Worksheet. This information will be used to determine your maximum eligibility for a "subsidized" Federal Direct Student Loan. If the subsidized eligibility is not the full amount you are eligible to receive based on your class standing, you may elect to apply for the remaining amount as an "unsubsidized" Federal Direct Student Loan. Note that the total aid received by a student cannot be greater than the student's cost of attendance.

How do I accept or decline a Federal Direct Student Loan?

Student will need to access the "Skidmore Student System" financial aid award acceptance form through the student system.  For step by step instructions, please click here.  

What is the difference between a "subsidized" and "unsubsidized" Federal Direct Student Loan?

The Federal government pays the interest on a "subsidized" loan while the borrower is in school. The interest on an "unsubsidized" loan is the responsibility of the borrower. Students have the option of paying the interest (usually billed quarterly) or have it "capitalized" (added to the principal and paid when the borrower enters repayment). The fixed interest rate on the subsidized loan is 5.05% for 2018/2019. The fixed interest rate on an Unsubsidized Federal Direct Student loan is also 5.05%. Information regarding paying the interest will be mailed directly to the student from the U.S. Department of Education.

How do I apply ONLY for a Federal Direct Student Loan?

If you are not receiving any type of financial aid but are interested in applying for a Federal Direct Student loan please follow the instructions for Federal Direct Student Loan Only.

What do I need to do for Skidmore to certify my loan?

You must complete the three steps listed below:

  1. Student will need access the "Skidmore Student System" financial aid award acceptance form through the student system.  You can find step by step instructions here.  
  2. First time Federal Direct Student Loan borrowers must complete the federally required Direct Loan Entrance Counseling, by following instructions for entrance counseling. You must use your FSA Username and password to complete the entrance counseling session. If a student has borrowed a Federal Direct Student Loan at Skidmore College, and completed the Entrance Counseling in a prior year, they are not required to complete it again.
  3. Complete a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN). This is required of all first time borrowers. If a student has borrowed a Federal Direct Loan in a previous year at Skidmore and completed the MPN they are not required to complete it again.

Are there fees associated with the Federal Direct Student Loan?

A 1.066% loan fee is deducted by the government for origination.

An example: If you borrow $3,500 in a Federal Direct Student Loan, the origination fee for 2018/2019 is 1.066% or $37 which is deducted from the loan proceeds. This means Skidmore receives $3,463. The student borrows $3,500 and needs to repay $3,500.

What is a Master Promissory Note?

All loan borrowers will need to complete a master promissory note. The Master Promissory Note is a written promise to pay the U.S. Department of Education a fixed amount of money over a specified period of time. You will complete the master promissory note once for your four years at Skidmore. The U.S. Department of Education must have the master promissory note on file in order to disburse funds to Skidmore.