• Manage Your Federal Student Loans
  • Types of Student Loans
  • Student Loan Default Statistics
  • Federal Student Loan Repayment

Students are responsible for tracking and managing federal grants and/or loans received over the course of their education. The National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) has important information for students to manage and track their federal aid history.

Manage Federal Loans and Grants, here: National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS)

Loans and grants have annual and aggregate (lifetime) limits on how much a student may receive. Use the National Student Loan Data System to maintain awareness of your annual and lifetime eligibility.

Federal Perkins Loan

Loans are funds which will need to be repaid

The Federal Perkins Loan program is no longer in effect.

The Federal Perkins Loan is a low interest federal loan for eligible students. Repayment of a Perkins loan begins 9 months after you are no longer enrolled at least half-time at an eligible institution. The monthly minimum payment is $40. The maximum repayment period is ten years, but the actual amount of your payments and the length of the repayment period depend upon the size of your debt. No interest is charged until the repayment period begins.

The interest rate is fixed at 5% per year on the unpaid balance. Repayment of a Federal Perkins Loan that is not delinquent or in default can be deferred if you are enrolled at least half-time at an eligible institution. Other Federal Perkins Loan deferment provisions are listed in the Student Guide, available at the Financial Aid Office or on the Web. Repayment of a Federal Perkins Loan may be canceled if you have a permanent and total disability or if you die. Certain circumstances such as full-time employment in specific fields designated as teacher shortage areas, full-time teaching in a designated school serving students from low-income families or service as a full-time law enforcement or corrections officer may qualify for the cancellation of a Federal Perkins Loan.

Entrance & Exit Loan Counseling

Students who have accepted a Federal Perkins loan at WOU must complete an online entrance loan counseling prior to loan disbursement, and exit counseling prior to departure from WOU. Complete Federal Perkins loan entrance & exit counseling at www.mappingyourfuture.org. Questions about Perkins loan counseling should be directed to the WOU Business Office at 503-838-8201.

Additional information about cancellation provisions for the Federal Perkins Loan and Master Promissory Notes are available from WOU’s Business Office. You may contact the Business Office at (503) 838-8201. Students awarded a Federal Perkins Loan on their financial aid award letter will be required to sign a promissory note prior to receiving their loan.

Federal Direct Loan Program

Loans are funds which will need to be repaid

Student Loans are available to both undergraduate and graduate students. A student must complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) and entrance counseling before receiving a Federal Direct Loan. Information about interest rates and fees can by found by clicking here.

Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan

If you are eligible for a Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan, the federal government pays your interest while you’re in school at least half-time and for some loans, during grace periods and periods of deferment. You must have “need” to qualify for the subsidized loan.

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan

These loans are available to students who do not qualify for “need” based Federal Direct Subsidized Loans or who are not eligible for the full Federal Direct Subsidized Loan amount. The amount of the loan cannot be more than the difference between the cost of attendance and any financial assistance you will receive from the school and any outside source (including the subsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loan). Interest accrues on the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan while you are in school and during the six-month grace period before repayment begins.

Additional Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan

Additional Direct Unsubsidized Loans may be available for independent students, and for dependent students whose parents do not pass a credit check and therefore are unable to borrow under the Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) Program.

Annual Federal Direct Stafford loan limits

Annual Federal Direct Stafford loan limits cover the academic year and summer term. For example, if you are a junior and are considered “dependent” for financial aid purposes, your annual loan limit is $7,500 whether you attend three or four terms. See below for the annual maximum Direct Stafford loan limits. The amount you are eligible to borrow depends on your other financial aid, cost of attendance and dependency status. Students can apply for private loans through banks or credit unions to cover the costs of study abroad.

 Year in School  Total Additional limits for Independent Students
Freshman (0-44 credits) $5,500 $4,000
Sophomore (45-89 credits) $6,500 $4,000
Junior/Senior (90+ credits) $7,500 $5,000
Graduate $20,500 N/A

Aggregate Loan Limits Dependent Students (except students whose parents are unable to obtain PLUS Loans) Independent Students (and dependent undergraduate students whose parents are unable to obtain PLUS Loans)
Subsidized and Unsubsidized Aggregate Loan Limit $31,000—No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. $57,500 for undergraduates—No more than $23,000 of this amount may be in subsidized loans.

$138,500 for graduate or professional students—No more than $65,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. The graduate aggregate limit includes all federal loans received for undergraduate study.

Entrance & Exit Loan Counseling

If you decide to accept a loan, you are making a commitment to repay it. Loan counseling is required by WOU’s Financial Aid Office to help you understand your loan obligations. Students receiving the Federal Direct Loan for the first time at WOU must complete an online entrance loan counseling session at www.studentloans.gov. When a student departs WOU, they must complete exit counseling at www.studentloans.gov (this data system only reflects federal loans, not private loans).

Parent Loans

Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)

Loans are funds which will need to be repaid

Available to parents of dependent undergraduate students. The loan maximum cannot exceed the total cost of attendance (budget) minus any other financial aid received (including any subsidized, unsubsidized and additional unsubsidized Federal Direct Loans the student is receiving). Information about interest rates and fees can by found by clicking here.

To be eligible for the direct PLUS loan, a parent will be required to complete the parent PLUS Loan application and Master Promissory Note (MPN) online at www.studentloans.gov. Parents will be notified directly by the Direct Loan servicer if they are eligible to receive the PLUS loan. If the parent does not pass the credit check and the PLUS loan is denied, the credit check may be challenged, additional information and documentation may be provided or an endorser may sign for the loan with the parent.

If the parent decides not to pursue the denied PLUS loan, the student may apply for an additional unsubsidized loan. Prior to that additional loan being awarded, the parent must notify Western Oregon University in writing that they no longer wish to continue the application process for the PLUS loan.

Graduate Loans

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans

Loans are funds which will need to be repaid

Available to students admitted and enrolled in a graduate program who have eligibility for additional funding after receiving Stafford loans and any other financial assistance. The loan maximum cannot exceed the total cost of attendance (budget) minus any other financial aid received (including any unsubsidized Federal Direct Loans the student is receiving). Information about interest rates and fees can by found by clicking here.

To apply for the Graduate PLUS loan, the graduate student will need to complete the Graduate PLUS loan application (includes a credit check), Master Promissory Note (MPN) and a special Graduate PLUS Loan counseling session online at www.studentloans.gov. Applicants will be notified directly by the Direct Loan servicer if they are eligible to receive the PLUS loan. If the applicant does not pass the credit check and the Graduate PLUS loan is denied, the credit check may be challenged, additional information and documentation may be provided or an endorser may sign for the loan with the applicant.

Alternative/Private Student Loans

Loans are funds which will need to be repaid

Alternative student loans are credit-based loans obtained directly through a financial institution. The Financial Aid Office will certify the loan amount within the cost of attendance upon the loan being approved by the financial institution. Students should investigate private loan options carefully to see if there is a loan that is right for them. Although WOU does not recommend any particular lender, we have developed a worksheet with questions to consider when shopping for an alternative student loan. WOU never recommends that a student obtain a “direct to consumer” student loan as these loans generally charge high fees and interest.

Student Loan Default Rate Statistics FY 2015 FY 2014 FY 2013
National Default Rate 10.8% 11.5% 11.3%
WOU Default Rate 7.0% 6.6% 7.2%
Avg. Fed. Loan Debt per WOU Student $26,390.24 $27,559.89 $26,493.12
Students in Default 116 111 124
Students in Repayment 1,652 1,661 1,714
Enrollment (FTE) 4,986 4,794 4,923

Understanding how to repay your federal student loans can save you a lot of time and money. For more information on finding the right repayment plan for you, what to do if you can’t afford your payments, student loan forgiveness, cancellation, and discharge, visit https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/repay-loans.

A deferment or forbearance allows you to temporarily postpone making your federal student loan payments or to temporarily reduce the amount you pay.

How do I request a deferment?

Most deferments are not automatic, and you will likely need to submit a request to your loan servicer, the organization that handles your loan account. If you are enrolled in school at least half-time and you would like to request an in-school deferment, you’ll need to contact your school’s financial aid office as well as your loan servicer.

Your deferment request should be submitted to the organization to which you make your loan payments.

  • Direct Loans and FFEL Program loans: contact your loan servicer
  • Perkins Loans: contact the school you were attending when you received the loan

How do I request a forbearance?

Receiving loan forbearance is not automatic. You must apply by making a request to your loan servicer. In some cases, you must provide documentation to support your request.

 

 

Contact

Financial Aid Office

toll free 1-877-877-1593 | or e-mail: finaid@wou.edu | Location: Administration Building, Room 310