Federal Loans

The Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid will work directly with you and your family to secure an affordable, premier college education at UST. Loans are an important part of many students’ college tuition solutions. All loans, including student loans, represent debts that must be repaid; however, most student loans do not require repayment until after you graduate or cease half-time enrollment.

In addition to delayed repayment options, most student loans have relatively low interest rates and other favorable terms and conditions. Student loans can be thought of as an investment in your future, but please keep in mind that failure to repay your student loans will have serious adverse consequences. We encourage first-time borrowers to learn about the loan process and make informed decisions.

Federal Stafford Loans

All students who complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and are eligible to be considered for financial aid may receive a Federal Stafford Loan. This loan may be subsidized or unsubsidized (or a combination of each). This loan is borrowed and repaid by the student. A student's eligibility is determined by the total cost of attendance, results of the FAFSA and other financial aid resources.

Subsidized Loan: The federal government pays the interest on this loan while you are in school at least half time.  Interest will begin to accrue during your six-month grace period after you leave school and during any other deferment periods. You must have financial need to qualify for this type of loan.

Unsubsidized Loan: You will be charged interest on this loan from the time the loan is disbursed until it is paid in full. You may allow interest to accumulate until repayment, at which time it will be capitalized. We encourage you to make quarterly interest payments, if possible. Financial need is not required to receive this loan.

Interest Rates

2016-17 Interest Rates (for loans made from July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017)


  • Subisdized: 3.76%    
  • Unsubsidized: 3.76%    


  • Subisdized: n/a
  • Unsubsidized: 5.31%

Steps to accept the student loan(s) offered to you

  1. Log into your myStThom account and accept the loan(s).
  2. Proceed to Direct Loan website to sign electronic Master Promissory Note (eMPN) Direct Loan website to sign electronic Master Promissory Note (eMPN).
  • Open your browser and go to
  • Sign in under "Manage My Direct Loan" using the same PIN number you used to e-sign your FAFSA form.
  • If this is your first time borrowing a student loan, select "Complete Entrance Counseling" and continue through that process.
  • All students need to select "Complete Master Promissory Note."
  • Click "Subsidized/Unsubsidized" on the next page and continue throughout eMPN process.
  • Enter reference information, including the addresses and phone numbers of two references.
  • Read all terms and conditions.
  • Review and e-sign your eMPN.
  • Log out, you are finished!

WATCH: How do I complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN) for my loan?

Watch & Learn

Federal Direct PLUS

The Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) is a loan for the parent of a dependent student. A stepparent may be eligible to borrow if income and assets were reported on the FAFSA. The first step in applying is to complete the FAFSA for the appropriate year. A parent can borrow the total estimated cost of attendance less the student's total financial aid (see student's award letter).

The PLUS loan is credit based, and parents may APPLY HERE.  The Office of Financial Assistance will receive your application electronically, and we will certify your PLUS/Grad PLUS loan.

Interest Rates

For the 2016-17 school year, all PLUS loans made through the Federal Direct PLUS Loan program will have a 6.31 percent interest rate.
Additional Loan Funding or Optional Outside Loan

Additional Loan Funding is the maximum amount you may borrow in either, your choice of a Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) or an Alternative loan.

Alternative Loans

Alternative loans are credit-based consumer loans that can be used for any educational related purpose. Most loans require that the applicant must have established credit history to be approved by The University of St. Thomas does not endorse or promote any particular lender that offers private alternative loans. The University advises that this loan option be used as a last resort after all federal loan options have been exhausted.

Below is a historic list of loans and/or lenders from whom our students have borrowed over the past five years and it includes only those that continue to offer private alternative loans. You are free to choose any lender, regardless if they are listed. We encourage all students to extensively research all alternative loan providers.

Historic List of Alternative Loan Programs/To Apply

Things to consider when researching Alternative Loans

  • These loans will require a credit check.
  • These loans may have variable or fixed interest rates.
  • There could be fees attached to the loan, dependent upon your credit score or your cosigner's credit score.
  • You may be required to have a credit-worthy cosigner.​

Repayment terms

Repayment terms vary from lender to lender. Most lenders have direct links to their alternative loan application and information via their website. A resource for finding active private education loan programs is

Self-Certification Form — Regardless of which private loan program you choose, you will need to complete a self-certification form before receiving your first disbursement of loan funds. Your lender will probably provide this form to you during the application process.

In Section Two of the self-certification form, you will be asked to provide the following dollar amounts:

A. Student's cost of attendance for the period of enrollment covered by the loan.

B. Estimated financial assistance.

C. Difference between amounts A and B.

You can find the amounts for items A and B in your myStThom account. For item A, use the figure listed in your myStThom financial aid tab. This is the dollar amount next to Fed Year COA. For item B, this is the amount listed within the Aid Summary For Aid Year chart, under “Offered” column, in the “Total” row.

If you have trouble locating these figures, please contact the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid for assistance.

The Certification Process

Once approved for an alternative loan, your lender will send our office a certification request. Once your loan amount has been approved and certified electronically by our office, your funds will be disbursed and will post to your student account. Before considering alternative loan programs, we encourage all students to first visit the.

Watch & Learn

Federal Grad PLUS Loans

The Federal Direct Grad PLUS Loan is for graduate students enrolled at least half time. In order to apply for a Grad PLUS loan, you must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). A graduate student can borrow the total estimated cost of attendance less the financial aid the student receives for the academic year. Students should accept their Federal unsubsidized loan first, however, before considering the Graduate PLUS loan. The Graduate PLUS loan has higher interest rates than the Federal unsubsidized loans.

The Federal Direct Grad PLUS loan is credit based, and students may APPLY HERE. The Office of Financial Assistance will receive your application electronically, and we will certify your PLUS/Grad PLUS loan.

Interest Rates

For the 2016-17 school year, all Grad PLUS loans will be made through the Federal Direct Grad PLUS Loan program and will have a 6.31 percent interest rate.

Watch & Learn