The FCC Financial Aid Office encourages students to explore various grants and scholarship opportunities and to evaluate loan options carefully. Borrow only what is really needed and remember that loans must be repaid!
What is a Federal Direct Student loan?
Federal Direct Student loans are one form of student financial aid. Through the Federal Direct student loan program, students borrow money for college from the Federal government.
How much can I borrow at FCC?
What is the difference between a subsidized and an unsubsidized loan?
- $5,500 is the maximum annual amount for which a first year student is eligible for, no more than $3,500 can be subsidized.
- $6,500 is the maximum annual amount for which a second year student is eligible for, no more than $4,500 can be subsidized.
- Independent students and students whose parent(s) are denied a Federal PLUS Loan qualify for up to an additional $4,000 unsubsidized loans.
For the Federal Direct Subsidized Student Loan
, the federal government will pay the interest until you enter your grace period
; the time you are no longer enrolled on at least a half-time basis. Repayment of the principal and interest begins six months after you cease to be enrolled at least half-time (including leaves of absence). The interest rate for Federal Direct Subsidized Loans for undergraduate students for which the first disbursement is made on or after July 1, 2022 and before July 1, 2023 is 4.99%.
For the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Student Loan
, the government does not pay the interest while a student is in school (as it does for the subsidized loan). Interest accrues and must be paid or capitalized during periods of enrollment in school and/or deferment. The interest rate for Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans for undergraduate students for which the first disbursement is made on or after July 1, 2022 and before July 1, 2023 is 4.99%.
Are there any federal loans available to parents?
The Federal Direct PLUS Loan (parent loan for undergraduate, dependent students) is a loan from the U.S. Department of Education for parents of undergraduate students who complete a FAFSA and meet general eligibility requirements. The interest rate for Federal Direct PLUS Loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2022 and before July 1, 2023 is 7.54%.
For information on how to apply for a Federal Direct PLUS Loan, please contact Financial Aid to obtain our application.
What fees, if any, are associated with these loans?
For student loans disbursed on or after October 1, 2019, an origination fee of 1.057% of the total loan will be assessed and automatically deducted. For PLUS loans disbursed prior to October 1, 2019, an origination fee of 4.228% will be assessed and automatically deducted. The origination fees are not expected to change for the 2022-2023 award year. The net disbursement will reflect these fees; therefore, the amount credited to the student’s account will be less than the loan amount. This fee is determined by the U.S. Department of Education.
How do I apply for a Federal Direct Student loan?
Federal Direct Student Loan Process
- Step 1: Complete the financial aid process at FCC View printable Road Map for Financial Aid. The FAFSA is the first step to applying for any type of Federal student aid, including loans.
- Step 2: When your financial aid eligibility has been determined, you will receive an award letter which lists any grants, scholarships, and loans on the system. Loans may be decreased if the student’s enrollment status is less than fulltime, if the student receives additional need based aid, or if the student is reaching their aggregate undergraduate loan limits.
- Step 3: If you are interested in pursuing a student loan while attending FCC, you must complete loan Entrance Counseling and sign a Master Promissory Note at studentloans.gov.
- Step 4: You must accept, reduce or decline your loan award through your PeopleSoft Self-Service. Additional items may be required throughout the application process. You should continue to monitor your "To Do List" and FCC email account.
Where can I learn more about the various federal student loan programs?
- If you have attended other colleges prior to attending FCC, you may be asked to submit your transcripts for transfer credit before you loan is originated.
- If you wish to reinstate a loan you have already declined or modify a loan you have already accepted, please contact our office.
To learn more about the various federal student loan programs and about debt management visit:
Loan Exit Counseling
Are you Ready? Repayment is Coming
The COVID-19 student loan relief period is ending soon. Interest rates will revert back to their original amounts and your payments will resume.
- Loan Exit Counseling is required when you are graduating, leaving school, or drop below half-time enrollment (half-time enrollment is defined as at least 6 credits per term at FCC).
- Exit Counseling prepares you for loan repayment and provides you with important details regarding your student loan rights and responsibilities and repayment plan options.
- Completing Exit Counseling is a federal requirement. FCC requires that all students complete the on-line exit counseling session at https://studentloans.gov/myDirectLoan/counselingInstructions.action?counselingType=exit.
- Please contact Financial Aid as soon as you know you will be graduating, leaving school or dropping below half-time.
How to be prepared for repayment:
- Know your next payment due date by logging into your servicer’s website. If you are unsure of your servicer’s information, you may log into www.studentaid.gov, select “Manage Loans”, and then log in using the “View My Account” button. You can log into the Federal Student Aid website with the same credentials you use to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
- Set up your auto-draft payments so you don’t miss a payment in the future.
- Remember that ECMC Solutions can help you determine the best path forward with all of your repayment options.
Frederick Community College has partnered with ECMC Solutions, a non-profit organization to help you navigate your federal student loans! We encourage you to take advantage of their free
Counselors are available to help you through their ecmcsolutions.org
live chat, email
, or by calling (844) 338-2863.