Loans

When you file your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), your Student Aid Report will outline the aid for which you're projected to be eligible; at minimum, the aid will include Federal Direct Stafford Loans. When considering your expenses and financial aid eligibility, it's important to learn about these loan programs and what it means to be a responsible borrower. This page is designed to help you be informed and even learn ways to reduce the amount that you may borrow.

What are Federal Direct Student Loans?

Graduation hat on top on money

Federal Direct Stafford Loans are funds that a student may borrow from the federal government to help with tuition, books and supplies, and other college expenses. There are two types of Federal Direct Stafford Loans: Subsidized Loans and Unsubsidized Loans. Both loans offer low-interest rates for students and have flexible repayment options. Determining which loan a student qualifies for depends on their financial need, as determined by their FAFSA. Subsidized loans are offered to students with financial need, while unsubsidized loans are available to eligible students regardless of financial need. To be considered, the student must be enrolled in at least 6 required units for their approved program of study. There are annual and aggregate limits for Direct Subsidized Loans. Planning for your long-term educational goals is a requirement through loan entrance counseling and the development of a responsible borrowing plan. Loans need to be repaid and can impact a student’s credit and credit scores. Click here to learn about loan amounts.

Loan Amounts

0-29 units = $5500* dependent students/$9500* independent students
30+ units = $6500** dependent students/$10,500** independent students

*may be awarded up to $3500 subsidized, the remaining will be unsubsidized
** may be awarded up to $4500 subsidized, the remaining will be unsubsidized

Learn more about subsidized and unsubsidized loans by visiting the Federal Student Aid website.

 

Subsidized vs. Unsubsidized Loans

 
Subsidized Loans
Unsubsidized Loans
Who qualifies? Must have financial need Available to eligible students regardless of financial need
How much can I borrow? Loan amount varies, but they are typically lower than unsubsidized loans Loan amount varies, but they are typically higher than subsidized loan
How does interest work? Paid by the U.S Department of Education while you're enrolled at least half time Interest begins accruing as soon as loan is taken out

Are there ways to reduce my borrowing?

Before you borrow, we encourage you to carefully weigh the pros and cons of borrowing, consider whether or not you really need to borrow, and if you do, remember you can borrow less than the loan amount offered. Click on the links below to learn ways to minimize your loan amount.

  • Live at Home

    While you might have to cover a portion of rent and utilities, living with parent(s) or relatives is a great way to save some money. If living with family is not an option, you might want to consider renting a room/apartment with friends before considering renting a place on your own.

  • Work Part-Time

    Did you receive Federal Work-Study as part of your financial aid package? If so, this is a great way to not only reduce your future debt but also gain professional experience. Visit our Federal Work-Study page to learn more. If you do not see a work-study offer in your financial aid package, you can still apply for on-campus and off-campus jobs by visiting SRJC Online Job Board.

  • Apply for Scholarships

    Scholarship is a type of gift aid (money does generally does not require repayment) that can be based on academic merits and/or financial needs. SRJC offers hundreds of scholarships to SRJC students! Be sure to check out AwardSpring to submit your scholarship application.

  • Buy, Rent, or Try Digital Textbooks

    Textbooks are a pricey investment but are necessary for success in the classroom. Carefully shopping around for your books and considering renting or utilizing an e-Textbook (digital textbook) can be a frugal option.

The Loan Process

The Student Financial Services is here to guide you through the loan process. Click on the tabs below to learn more about the loan process, and, as always, when in doubt, just ask us!

Document with money sign
  • Step 1: Request a Federal Direct Stafford Loan

    If you have determined that you need to borrow a Federal Direct Stafford Loan, please log into StudentForms to request the Federal Direct Loan Request Form.

    Follow the steps below to fill out the Federal Direct Loan Request Form:
    1. Log in to your StudentForms portal
    2. In the upper right-hand corner of the screen, you will find the REQUEST button
    3. Select the "Federal Direct Loan Request Form Primary - Santa Rosa"
    4. Fill out the form and submit

    Please allow 4-6 weeks for your request to be processed. If there are questions or concerns about your request, one of our specialists may contact you.

  • Step 2: Complete Entrance Loan Counseling

    Entrance Counseling is required before any Federal Direct Stafford Loan can disburse. It is the government's opportunity to educate the student borrower about the commitment the student is making and becoming a responsible student borrower. Entrance Counseling provides guidance students need to understand interest rates, loan repayment and more.

    To complete your Entrance Loan Counseling:
    1. Log in to your Federal Student Aid account using your FSA ID. The FSA ID is the username and password used to complete the FAFSA. If you forgot your username or password, you can reset it on the login page.
    2. Under "Manage Loans" at the top of the page, select "Complete Entrance Counseling"
    3. Click "Start" next to "I'm an Undergraduate Student"
    4. From the list of schools, select Santa Rosa Junior College. This will allow SRJC to receive notification of your completion.
    5. Complete each step of the entrance counseling process and click "submit" once you have finished.
  • Step 3: Complete a Master Promissory Note

    Signing the Master Promissory Note (MPN) is required before any Federal Direct Stafford Loan can disburse. The student borrower's signature states that they understand the commitment of borrowing and that they fully commit to repaying the loan(s).

    To sign your Master Promissory Note (MPN)
    1. Log in to your Federal Student Aid account using your FSA ID. The FSA ID is the username and password used to complete the FAFSA. If you forgot your username or password, you can reset it on the login page.
    2. Under "Manage Loans"  at the top of the page, select "Complete Master Promissory Note"
    3. Click "Start" next to "I'm an Undergraduate Student"
    4. From the list of schools, select Santa Rosa Junior College. This will allow SRJC to receive notification of your completion.
    5. Complete each step of the MPN process and click "submit" once you have finished.

    You can view or download a PDF of your MPN through your Federal Student Aid account.

  • Exit Loan Counseling

    Exit Loan Counseling ensures that you understand your student loan responsibilities and provides you important information that will prepare you for repaying your federal student loans. If you graduate, complete your program, or drop below 6 units for 6 or more months, you need to complete the Exit Loan Counseling within 30 days.

    To complete your Exit Loan Counseling:
    1. Log in to your Federal Student Aid account using your FSA ID. The FSA ID is the username and password used to complete the FAFSA. If you forgot your username or password, you can reset it on the login page.
    2. Under "Manage Loans" at the top of the page, select "Complete Exit Counseling"
    3. Click "Start" next to "I'm an Undergraduate Student"
    4. From the list of schools, select Santa Rosa Junior College. This will allow SRJC to receive notification of your completion.
    5. Complete each step of the exit counseling process and click "submit" once you have finished.