Information About Student Loans
What is the difference between a grant and a loan?
Often, students need to borrow money to help with school related expenses. Typically, a student who needs to borrow to complete school is making a good investment in their future. However, many students enter into debt without a clear picture of how it will affect them in the long run.
The SRJC Financial Aid office is dedicated to student success. To help students successfully navigate the student loan process and develop a realistic educational borrowing plan, our loan application includes a “Responsible Borrowers Worksheet”.
We have workshops to assist you in defining a realistic long term borrowing plan, understanding how the 150% subsidized loan limit affects you in completing the Responsible Borrowers worksheet. Visit the Responsible Borrower's Workshop schedule for a complete list of upcoming workshops.
Ways to reduce debt: jobs, scholarships, & budget planning
It is important to understand how much it costs to live and go to school. Here is a link to the student expense budget, which defines a reasonable expectation of cost – note that many students living away from their parents may experience higher costs due to housing and transportation.
We encourage students to consider part-time employment as a way to help pay for their expenses. Please visit the SRJC Career Development Center on the Santa Rosa Campus in the Bertolini Student Center or online at https://careerdevelopmentservices.santarosa.edu/ to explore job opportunities both on and off campus.
We also encourage students to actively search for scholarships. A little bit of effort in this area has the potential to save students hundreds or even thousands of dollars in student loan debt. Visit the Santa Rosa Junior College Scholarship office on the Santa Rosa Campus in Plover Hall, on the Petaluma Campus in Room 116, Jacobs Hall or at http://scholarships.santarosa.edu for more information.
The Student Loan Process at SRJC
- Student must apply for financial aid to receive a student loan by completing the Free Application for Student Aid at www.fafsa.gov; SRJC’s school code is 001287.
- After completing the FAFSA, students will receive a Student Aid Report online.
- Within a few weeks, students may receive a letter from the SRJC Financial Aid office requesting additional information and/or documents to be submitted.
- The letter will also advise students interested in student loans, that the Loan Request Form can be picked up from the Financial Aid Office or can be downloaded .
- After any documents requested by the Santa Rosa Junior College Financial Aid office are completed and returned, the file will be reviewed for grant, work study, and BOG fee waiver eligibility. An initial award letter will be mailed to the student. When the Loan Request form is submitted, it is processed in date order after other awards have been determined. This often takes 2-4 additional weeks.
- A student then receives notification explaining if their loan is approved or denied. If the loan is approved a loan packet is mailed to the student. This packet includes a revised award letter, instructions, and a schedule of disbursement dates.
- The student must complete and submit a Direct Loan Promissory Note online at http://studentloans.gov. Detailed instructions on how to fill out your promissory note online are available at https://financialaid.santarosa.edu/how-fill-out-your-promissory-note--mpn-online
- The student will complete any necessary entrance counseling workshops http://financialaid.santarosa.edu/entrance-loan-counseling or any necessary exit counseling workshops http://financialaid.santarosa.edu/exit-loan-counseling-requirement
- The funds are requested, transferred electronically to the school, and mailed to the student on the next available loan disbursement date.
- The student’s financial stress is eased during the school year allowing them to focus on their studies and complete their educational goal, which in turn offers them more career opportunities. When the student is able to successfully complete their education in a timely manner and then work in their chosen field, the debt is worthwhile.