All students borrowing to attend WCCC for the first time are required to complete loan entrance counseling. Students leaving WCCC, dropping below 6 credits, or graduating are required to complete loan exit counseling.
Information Regarding Student Loans
Loans are borrowed and must be repaid with interest. Do you have student loans? Need help with your finances? Want to be more money savvy? Get $ALT! For more information, go to www.saltmoney.org/wccc.
Subsidized William D. Ford Federal Direct (Stafford) Student Loan:
Based on financial need. The principal and interest are both deferred as long as the student is enrolled at least half-time (6 credits). In addition, the principal is deferred until six months after the student graduates or drops below 6 credits–this is known as the “grace period.” Students with Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loans that first disburse between 7/1/2012 and 7/1/2014 will no longer have interest-subsidy benefits during the six-month grace period. Payments on the principal will not be due during the grace period, but interest will accrue.
Unsubsidized William D. Ford Direct (Stafford) Student Loan:
Non-need-based. The interest is either paid while a student is in school or capitalized over the life of the loan. (The principal is deferred until six months after a student graduates or drops below 6 credits.)
Direct Loan Interest Rates
The Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act of 2013 ties federal student loan interest rates to financial markets. Under this Act, interest rates will be determined each June for new loans being made for the upcoming award year, which runs from July 1 to the following June 30. Each loan will have a fixed interest rate for the life of the loan. The interest rate for new Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans made on or after July 1, 2014 and before July 1, 2015 is 4.66%.
Direct Plus Loans
(Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students):
This loan is available to parents of a dependent student (parents must have a good credit history to qualify). As with Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized student loans, the interest rate for PLUS loans will be determined each June for new loans being made for the upcoming award year, which runs from July 1 to the following June 30. Each loan will have a fixed interest rate for the life of the loan. The interest rate for new PLUS Loans made on or after July 1, 2014 and before July 1, 2015 is 7.21%.
As of December 1, 2013, Federal Direct Stafford Loans have a 1.073% loan fee taken out at disbursement. For Direct PLUS loans, a 4.288% fee is taken out at disbursement.
Annual Loan Limits
Annual loan limits for subsidized and unsubsidized loans are: $3,500 for first year undergraduates $4,500 for second year undergraduates, and $5,500 for students in a post-Associate’s Degree Advanced Certificate. Dependent students may be eligible to borrow an additional unsubsidized loan of up to $2,000 per academic year. Independent students and dependent students whose parents cannot borrow a PLUS loan may be eligible to borrow an additional unsubsidized Stafford Loan of up to $6,000 per academic year.
30-Day Delay in Disbursement for First-time, First-Year Borrowers
If a student is a first-year undergraduate student and a first-time borrower, WCCC cannot disburse his/her first payment until 30 days after the first day of the enrollment period. This practice ensures that students won’t have a loan to repay if they don’t begin classes or if they withdraw during the first 30 days of classes.
150% Direct Subsidized Loan Limit:
First-time borrowers as of July 1, 2013 or students who have paid in full previous FFEL/Direct Loans and are borrowing a new Direct Loan as of July 1, 2013, have a maximum subsidized loan eligibility period of 150% of the published length of the borrower’s academic program. For example, the maximum subsidized loan eligibility period for a two-year Associate’s Degree is three years, generally prorated for less than full-time enrollment. See the following chart:
Program Length Maximum Eligibility Period
- 5-year Bachelor’s Degree 7.50 Years
- 4-Year Bachelor’s Degree 6.00 Years
- 2-Year Associate’s Degree 3.00 Years
- 2-Year Certificate 3.00 Years
- 1-Year Certificate 1.50 Years
- 18-Week Certificate 27 Weeks
- 10-Week Certificate 15 Weeks
It is important to know that changing programs of study from one program at the same level to another (for example, from one Associate Degree to another) does not reset the measurement to maximum. Eligibility already used is subtracted from maximum eligibility allowed. Students transferring to a four-year degree must subtract eligibility already used from the 6 years they are allowed for a Bachelor’s.
The Department of Education will calculate a student’s remaining loan eligibility based on program-level enrollment data reported by WCCC and other higher-education institutions the student may have attended. Students who lose subsidized loan eligibility are still eligible for unsubsidized Staffford Direct Loans (provided they meet all other eligibility requirements). For more information, see “Time Limitation on Direct Subsidized Loan Eligibility.”
The Student Aid Report (SAR) that you receive from the Department of Education after filling out your 2014-15 FAFSA will indicate whether you are subject to the 150% limit, and if so, will let you know your subsidized usage periods to date, whether you have reached your 150% limit, and if you are now responsible for interest that is accruing. You can monitor your Maximum Eligibility Period or Remaining Eligibility Periods by logging into the National Student Loan Data System.
These loans are not federal loans and not federally guaranteed. Borrowers are subject to a credit check, and interest rates vary. For more information, check with the Financial Aid Office.
No Preferred Lender List for Alternative Loans
WCCC does not have a “preferred lender list” for alternative loans. The following lenders have issued alternative loans to WCCC borrowers in the last five years:
- Bank of America
- Maine Educational Loan Authority
- Sallie Mae
- Wells Fargo
Should WCCC provide information regarding a private education loan from a lender to a prospective borrower, WCCC will provide information to the prospective borrower, including:
- Information required under Sec. 128(e) of the Truth in Lending Act (15 U.S.C. 1638(e) (see https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/15/1638
- That the prospective borrower may qualify for loans or other assistance under Title IV, HEA programs; and
- That the terms and conditions of Title IV, HEA program loans may be more favorable than the provisions of private education loans.
Monitor Student Debt via the NSLDS Student Access Website
To monitor all of your federal student loan debt, you may access the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) online or call toll-free 1-800-999-8219. You will need your federal PIN number to view your loan history. Please note that this website does not list your alternative or private student loans.
It is important that you know who your loan servicer is so you can contact them prior to going into repayment. To determine your servicer, click on “Financial Aid Review,” then click on the “Accept” button, and again click “Accept” on the following screen. Type in your Social Security Number, the first two letters of your last name, your date of birth and click “Submit.” Then click on “Financial Aid Review.” Your loan information will appear. You can click on the blue number on the left side of the screen that corresponds with each loan to see the associated servicer and contact information.
Information on any Stafford loan taken out by a student or parent will be submitted to the NSLDS, and will be accessible by guaranty agencies, lenders, and institutions determined to be authorized users of the data system.
Calculate what your monthly payments would be when you go into repayment under various repayment plans with this loan calculator.
Federal Loan Limits and Refusal to Certify a Stafford Loan:
Through debt management and loan counseling, students are discouraged from borrowing more than the “recommended” eight percent of projected first-year earnings.
Individual, comprehensive counseling by WCCC’s Financial Aid Office is mandatory for any student wishing to borrow. (Borrowers are encouraged to limit borrowing requests to a combination of subsidized and unsubsidized Federal Stafford loans that does not exceed the College’s average 2012-2013 graduating student’s indebtedness of $5,000 for the 55% of graduating students who had loans.) As part of our Student Loan Default Management Program, WCCC reserves the right, as granted by the U.S. Dept. of Education, to refuse to certify a student’s Stafford loan or to certify the loan for an amount less than the established federal limits. In that instance, WCCC must document the reason and provide that written explanation to the student. WCCC’s decision is final and cannot be appealed to the Dept. of Education.