Skip navigation

Loan Options for Undergraduate Students

The Office of Financial Aid at Wisconsin Lutheran College guides students and parents through the loan application process.

  • Although loans should not be a family’s first option to pay for school, many students may need to borrow to pay a portion of their education costs.

     Overview

    • Consider federal loans first. They often provide better benefits.
    • Students can borrow the Federal Direct Loan on their own.
    • Click here for more information on federal loans.
    • If other loans are needed, a dependent student will usually need the help of a parent or a cosigner.

    Federal Direct Loan Fixed Interest Rates 

    For loans disbursed in 2016-2017

    • Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans (Undergraduate): 4.29%
    • Direct Parent PLUS Loans: 6.84%
    PRINTABLE LOAN INFORMATION (PDF)  ESTIMATE YOUR LOAN REPAYMENT


    Entrance and Exit Counseling

    Entrance counseling is required of all first time student borrowers. If you are borrowing federal loans for the first time at WLC, you must complete this session before your loan funds can be disbursed. Clicking the "Start Now" link will take you to the Direct Loans website where you will log in with your FSA ID and password. Once logged-in, click on the "Complete Counseling" link to start the "Entrance Counseling Session." The session will take about 30 minutes to complete. START NOW

    Exit counseling is a federal requirement before you withdraw, graduate, or drop below half-time attendance (even if you are planning to transfer to another school). The session includes information on repayment options for your federal loans. Clicking the "Start Now" link will take you to the Direct Loans website where you will log in with your FSA ID and password. Once logged-in, click on the "Complete Counseling" link to start the "Exit Counseling Session." The session will take about 30 minutes to complete. START NOW

    Questions? Contact the Office of Financial Aid by phone at 414.443.8856, by fax at 414.443.8540, or via email.



    Explore Loan Programs and Options

    Select a heading below to explore loan programs options.

  • FOR STUDENTS: DIRECT SUBSIDIZED AND UNSUBSIDIZED LOANS

    Federal Direct Loan Program

    These fixed rate federal loans for students enable you to borrow for college now and repay after college. No income or credit history is required.

    Features include:

    • Fixed interest rate for Direct Loans borrowed by undergraduate students in 2016-2017 is 4.29%.
    • A 1.068% origination fee (Subject to change by the U.S. Department of Education)
    • Repayment begins 6 months after student drops below half time status or after graduation
    • Standard 10 year repayment plan with other repayment options available
    • A 0.25% interest rate reduction when you pay via auto-debit during repayment

    Your FAFSA determines the type of loan you can receive. Your loan eligibility for the year is reflected on your financial aid award. You will be eligible for a subsidized loan, an unsubsidized loan, or a combination of both.

    Subsidized Loan:

    Federal government pays your interest while you are enrolled at least half time.

    Unsubsidized Loan:

    Interest accrues and can either be paid periodically while you are in school or capitalized (added to the principal of your loan to repay later).

    Maximum annual loan eligibility is:

     ALL STUDENTSDEPENDENT STUDENTS INDEPENDENT STUDENTS 
     Subsidized Direct Loan Total Direct Loan Total 
    FRESHMAN  $3,500$5,500 $9,500 
    SOPHOMORE $4,500$6,500 $10,500 
     JUNIOR/SENIOR (per year) $5,500$7,500 $12,500 


    Maximum total undergraduate loan eligibility is:

      SUBSIDIZEDDIRECT LOAN TOTAL 
    DEPENDENT STUDENTS $23,000 $31,000
    INDEPENDENT STUDENTS $23,000 $57,500

     

    FOR PARENTS: DIRECT PLUS LOAN

    The Direct PLUS Loan program for parents enables parents to borrow funds to pay the education expense of each child who is a dependent undergraduate student enrolled at least half time.

    Features include:

    • 6.84% fixed interest rate for all PLUS Loans borrowed in 2016-2017
    • A 4.272% origination fee (subject to change by the U.S. Department of Education)
    • Quick credit pre-approval
    • Payments begin approximately 60 days after the second disbursement
    • A 0.25% interest rate reduction for many when you pay via auto-debit during repayment
    • Interest only payments available
    • Tax deductible interest for many
    • Can request postponement of payments until after your student graduates

    WLC PLUS Partner Program

    The WLC PLUS Partner Program is Wisconsin Lutheran College's commitment to you to help pay a portion of the interest on your PLUS loan. That's right; WLC will pay a designated amount of the interest for a maximum of four years while your son or daughter is enrolled at Wisconsin Lutheran College. You might call it a "value-added" Federal Direct PLUS Loan. Click here to learn more about this unique opportunity!

    Applying for the Federal Direct PLUS Loan

    The following "START HERE" link will allow you, the parent, to:

    1. Determine the amount of loan you plan to borrow for the entire academic year
    2. Request a PLUS Loan
    3. Complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN)

    Allow 60 minutes to complete this process. You will need your FSA ID and password.

    START HERE

    PRIVATE EDUCATION LOANS

    Private education loans are specific consumer loans in the student's name offered by private lenders to help pay education expenses for the year. These need to be researched very carefully as they are not federal loans. Our office recommends borrowing Federal Direct Subsidized, Unsubsidized and PLUS loans first before borrowing a private education loan. Students from Minnesota may also want to check out the Minnesota SELF Loan program.

    Features include:

    • Cosigner is usually required
    • Must undergo credit check
    • Variable interest rates may change monthly or quarterly
    • Fixed interest rates offered by some lenders

    Tips for Selecting a Private Education Loan

    1. Where can you find a Private Education Loan?

    Some banks and credit unions offer private education loans. Details regarding these programs are provided when you click on the 'Start Now' button below. You can borrow from a lender on this list or from any other lender of your choice.
    • CU Student Loans
    • Discover Student Loans
    • Minnesota SELF Loans (must be a Minnesota resident)
    • Sallie Mae Smart Option Loan
    • Thrivent Federal Credit Union Private Student Loan
    • Wells Fargo Collegiate Loan
    • Wells Fargo Graduate Loan
    2. What are the interest rates and fees charged private education loans?

    Each lender determines the interest rate and fee structure for its own loan programs. They will typically base the interest rate on a benchmark such as prime or LIBOR plus a specific percent margin. As prime or LIBOR go up or down, so does your interest rate.

    3. When does repayment begin and how long does it last?

    Many private education loan programs start the payments 6 months after college graduation (or after leaving school). Interest accrues while you are still in school. Typical repayment plans last anywhere from 7-25 years. You may save money by starting immediate repayment on the principal and interest of the loan or by making interest only payments while you are in school. To save even more money, consider paying the loan off as fast as possible!

    Remember to borrow only what is needed when using a private education loan. Compare loan programs to determine the program that is best for you.

    Applying for a Private Education Loan

    1. Determine the amount of loan needed for the entire school year. Be sure to borrow your maximum Direct Subsidized/Unsubsidized Loans first.
    2. Determine the private education loan that you plan to use.
    3. Sign the promissory note and complete the requirements of the lender for that loan program.

    Private Loan Options

    If you prefer to borrow from a lender of your choice, go to the lender's website to apply for the loan.

    Private Lender Selection Disclosure

    Wisconsin Lutheran College officials select private lenders based on the best interest of the students. The criteria includes but is not limited to benefits offered to the borrower, customer service provided to the borrower, ease of applying for loans and timely processing. The list includes three or more lenders and is reviewed annually to ensure that the lenders continue to meet our criteria. Borrowers can select a lender from the list or any other lender of their choice.

    Wisconsin Lutheran College prohibits officials from accepting benefits (financial or other) from lenders. These prohibitions include: participating in revenue-sharing arrangements where Wisconsin Lutheran College would receive revenue for recommending lenders to students; accepting gifts of more than minimal value including trips and entertainment; allowing contracting arrangements related to education loans; assigning students to a specific lender or refusing to certify a loan from a specific lender; accepting offers of funds for private loans; accepting assistance with office staffing from a lender; and receiving anything of value from a lender, guarantor or group for serving on an advisory board except for reimbursement of reasonable expenses incurred for serving on the board.

    Wisconsin Lutheran College is allowed to accept training materials, training sessions, assistance with entrance and exit loan counseling sessions as long as the presenter does not promote the services of a specific lender and philanthropic contributions as long as they are not related to education loans.