Student Loan Programs

Student loans have varying repayment terms and interest rates and must be repaid. The interest rates listed below are the standard rates for the 2013-14 academic year; however, the promissory note is the final word on the correct rate.

For the class of 2010, 69.8 percent of students borrowed to help with educational costs. For undergraduates, the average amount borrowed by students was $26,343. The undergraduate median amount borrowed by students was $21,759.

Federal Direct Stafford Loans
This federally funded loan program is available to full- and part-time undergraduate students. The Federal Direct Stafford Loan program enables students to borrow directly from the U.S. Department of Education, and repay to an approved Federal Student Aid Loan Servicer. MassArt's Office of Student Financial Assistance originates and processes the loan.

Repayment begins six months after the student graduates, withdraws from the college, or drops to less than half-time enrollment. In order to receive a Stafford Loan, a student must be enrolled for at least six credits per semester and must be maintaining satisfactory academic progress.

Application Process: In order to apply for a Federal Direct Stafford Loan, students must file the annual FAFSA. Once the Office of Student Financial Assistance determines your eligibility for financial aid, then the Stafford Loan(s) for which you are eligible will be offered to you on your financial assistance letter.

The Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan is provided based on financial need. The federal government pays the interest on a subsidized loan while the student is enrolled in school for at least six credits per semester, and during authorized deferment periods. The current interest rate for undergraduate Subsidized Stafford Loans for the 2013-2014 school year is fixed at 3.86 percent. Rates vary from year to year.

The Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan is provided regardless of financial need. The student is responsible for the interest that accrues during all periods. During this time, students may either pay the accumulating interest or capitalize the interest. Capitalization means the unpaid interest will be added to the principal balance of the loan at the beginning of the repayment period. The current interest rate for undergraduate Unsubsidized Stafford Loans for the 2013-2014 school year is fixed at 3.86 percent. Rates vary from year to year.

For 2013-2014, Federal Direct Stafford Loans have a 1.072 percent origination fee, which gets subtracted from the loan before disbursement.

Students who receive a Stafford Loan for the first time at MassArt are required to complete entrance counseling and sign a Master Promissory Note. Entrance counseling and the MPN are completed online by visiting www.studentloans.gov. Once you are signed in, click on "Complete Entrance Counseling" in the menu on the left-hand side of the screen. After completing the Entrance Counseling, click on "Complete MPN" in the menu on the left-hand side of the screen. Stafford Loan applications are considered incomplete until the Entrance Counseling and Master Promissory Note have been completed.

Undergraduate Federal Stafford Loan Limits
Stafford Loan Instructions for New Borrowers

Massachusetts No Interest Loan (NIL)
This is a student loan offered to needy Massachusetts residents by MassArt's Office of Student Financial Assistance on behalf of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. This loan requires repayment six months after the borrower graduates, withdraws, or drops to less than half-time, and there is absolutely no interest charged. Students awarded this loan must come to the Office of Student Financial Assistance to complete the necessary paperwork in September.

Federal Perkins Loan
This is a federal student loan offered to undergraduates that does not need to be repaid until nine months after the student graduates, withdraws, or drops to less than half-time. The interest rate is 5 percent, however interest is not charged until repayment begins. First-time borrowers awarded this loan must come to the Office of Student Financial Assistance to complete the necessary paperwork in September.

Alternative Loans (Private Loans)
If the aid a student has accepted does not cover the total cost of his/her education, then applying for a private student loan may help to fill the additional need.

Students' maximum eligibility for alternative loans is their costs of attendance less any other aid they have received. While the Office of Student Financial Assistance will process any private loan application, please visit our alternative loan programs page for suggestions.