Student loans provide money for college that you must pay back in the future. There are several types of student loans offered by the U.S. government. In addition, some private lenders offer student loans, although these are generally more expensive.
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Federal Direct Loan Program
Federal Direct Loans are not automatically offered at LTCC, but are easily available by student request. Students must meet the minimum eligibility requirements, which include completing a FAFSA and being enrolled in at least six units at the college in the term in which they want to borrow a loan.
- Direct subsidized loans are made to eligible students who demonstrate financial need. The college will determine the amount you can borrow based on your need, dependency status, and college credits completed. You will not have to pay interest on this type of loan as long as you are attending school at least half-time, during the first six months after you leave school, or during a period in which you have qualified for a deferment of loan payments.
- Direct unsubsidized loans are made to eligible students without a required demonstration of financial need. The college will determine the amount you can borrow based on dependency status and college credits completed. You must pay the interest on this type of loan, even while you are in school.
- Direct Plus loans are made to parents of dependent students who wish to borrow money to help pay for their student's education. For more information, visit the Federal Student Aid website.
- Prorated Loans
Students attending Lake Tahoe Community College for one or two terms are subject to prorated loan amounts. Students attending for one quarter will have their loan disbursed in two equal disbursements on scheduled days.
- Entrance Counseling/Orientation
All new borrowers are required to do an in-person and/or online session known as "entrance counseling/orientation" before receiving the first Direct Subsidized Loan or Direct Unsubsidized Loan disbursement.
- Exit Counseling/Interview
All students who receive a federal loan are required to complete an in-person and/or online session known as "exit counseling" when they graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time enrollment. This counseling is designed to give students information about repaying their loans and help them understand their rights and responsibilities as a borrower.
If you are leaving school after receiving a federal loan, you will receive an email with a link to the website where you can complete the online counseling session. You can also find a link to the exit-counseling site at studentloans.gov. You will have 30 days to complete the online session. If you don’t, the college may place a hold on your student records, including transcripts.
- National Student Loan Data System
If you are a student or parent borrower, Lake Tahoe Community College is required to submit information about your loan to the National Student Loan Data System. This information will be available to guaranty agencies, lenders, and other institutions that qualify as authorized users of the data system.
Direct Loan Disbursement
Direct Loan Cancellation
Once you have been paid a Federal Direct Student Loan, it can be cancelled and returned through the LTCC Financial Aid Office up until the year closes. The last day to request a loan cancellation of each academic year is June 15th (also the deadline for all annual financial aid documents to be submitted). All you need to do is:
1. Email email@example.com from your LTCC email and say that you want to cancel your Federal Direct Student Loan. Provide a numerical dollar amount that you would like to return in the body of your email, and please include your LTCC Student ID number.
2. Make a payment for the amount that you would like to cancel. You may pay in-person at the LTCC Fiscal Services Office, or send a check or money order for the dollar amount you would like to return to:
Direct Loan Repayment
Student loan payments are deferred while you are in school at least half time during mandatory terms (at LTCC: Fall, Winter, Spring), meaning that you do not have to pay. However, there is no pre-payment penalty, so you are allowed to begin repayment whenever you like.
Once you have left school, or drop below half time (6 units at LTCC), you get a one-time only, six-month grace period before you are required to begin repayment of your student loans.
When your loan is approved by Federal Student Aid, you will get a notification in the mail that will tell you your Loan Servicer. This will be the company that you will repay, who will collect loan payments and provide customer service on behalf of the government for your loan. They usually have a website where you can create an account, track your loan, and make repayments, just the same type of thing as your online banking, phone bill, or utility bills.
If you are scheduled to begin repayment, but you are not sure you will have the money to repay, Please contact your loan servicer and request a deferment or forbearance of your payments! You are usually entitled to up to 12 months of relief, and this will help you avoid Defaulting on your Federal Student Loans.
Default means that you are 270 days or more past due on your student loan payment. Defaulting on student loans can be very unpleasant. You can be denied access to regular checking or savings accounts, or you could have your accounts garnished by the federal government.
Please feel free to call or text Naomi Follett, Director of Financial Aid, at (530) 314-7857 if you have any questions or concerns about repaying your student loans.
LTCC Payment Plan
If you determine that a Federal Direct Student Loan is just not for you, Lake Tahoe Community College offers students the option of a quarterly payment plan to assist in the payment of tuition and fees. No fees are charged nor interest accrued on outstanding balances. A payment plan is either 3 or 4 months in length and is dependent on the length of the quarter. The terms are such that a quarter must be paid in full prior to registering for the following quarter. Any balances outstanding at the end of the quarter will result in a hold on a student’s account, which will block registration and the ability to obtain a transcript. Payment plan requests and questions should be directed to the Bursar or Fiscal Assistant in the Fiscal Services Office.