The Direct Loan Program for Graduate and Professional Students includes the Unsubsidized Stafford Loan and the Graduate PLUS Loan. When you complete a FAFSA, you will automatically be considered for all of the federal student loans for which you are eligible. The Office of Financial Aid will then further determine your eligibility amount(s) for the current academic year, and we will include any offer(s) in your Financial Aid Award Notification. You are required to actively accept or decline your federal financial aid award offer(s) on the myIIT portal.

The Office of Financial Aid recommends students borrow conservatively, and does not encourage students to borrow unnecessary federal student loan funds.

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan

  • Non credit-based loan
  • Not based on financial need
  • $20,500 maximum amount per academic year
  • $138,500 maximum lifetime limit 
  • 5.28% fixed interest rate as of July 1, 2021 through July 1, 2022, which begins to accrue once loan is disbursed
  • 1.057% loan origination fee deducted off the top of loans first disbursed on or after October 1, 2021 and before October 1, 2022
  • Repayment begins 6 months after you graduate or drop below half-time
  • Deferment and forbearance are available 
  • Variety of payment plans are available

Additionl Information

General Terms & Conditions

Loan Agreement(s) (Master Promissory Note)

  • First-time borrowers of federal student loans at Chicago-Kent must complete an online loan agreement known as a Master Promissory Note (MPN) with Federal Student Aid at studentloans.gov.
  • As a first-time borrower, you must submit a separate signed MPN agreement for each federal loan you choose to borrow (the Unsubsidized Loan and/or Graduate PLUS Loan) in order to receive the federal loans funds you accept.
  • The MPN completion is typically a one-time requirement, valid for 10 years. If you have an MPN agreement already on file from prior borrowing, you may not need to complete a new one.
  • Specific to Graduate PLUS Loan: There is no direct online application for the Graduate PLUS Loan through Direct Loans for Chicago-Kent College of Law. Your acceptance of the loan on the myIIT portal serves as your authorization for Direct Loans to process a credit check as this is federal credit based loan. A new credit check is processed by Direct Loans each academic year, and in some cases each time a loan is requested by the student. If a Graduate PLUS Loan is approved with an endorser or an appeal, a new MPN agreement may be required.
  • Click here to read about your options if you have been denied the Plus Loan.

Federal Loan Entrance Counseling

  • First time borrowers of federal student loans at Chicago-Kent College of Law must complete Loan Entrance Counseling online with Federal Student Aid at studentloans.gov.
  • This is a one-time requirement for Chicago-Kent borrowers of federal financial aid.
  • Complete the combined Federal Unsubsidized and Federal Graduate PLUS Loan Counseling.
  • Please allow at least 1 week for the requirement to clear on the myIIT portal and for your funds to be disbursed to your student account accordingly.
  • Please note that the Financial Awareness Counseling (FAC) and PLUS Loan Counseling is not the same as the Federal Loan Entrance Counseling. FAC provides tools and information to help students understand their financial aid and assist them in covering the basics of financial literacy. However, FAC counseling session will not satisfy the “Loan Entrance Counseling” requirement for your federal loans at Chicago-Kent College of Law.

Federal Loan Exit Counseling

A student in a graduating/withdraw/less than half time status must complete the Loan Exit Counseling online with Federal Student Aid at studentloans.gov. This counsels the student on their rights and responsibilities of repaying their loan debt. It is considered to be step two, the final step of the loan exit counseling process at Chicago-Kent. Step one is for the student to attend a group loan repayment workshop on campus. Students also have the option to schedule a one-on-one appointment with an Accredited Financial Counselor on campus during the scheduled loan repayment program, typically held in the spring of each term. 

A student this this status is considered to be in their six-month grace period for federal loans obtained at Chicago-Kent College of Law, as of the new status date. After the 6 month grace period the repayment period will begin. To view your loan servicers and loan history log into the National Student Loan Database System using your FSA ID to log in.

  • Even if a student plans on re-enrolling in the future at Chicago-Kent or another school this requirement is still mandatory.

For graduating students the loan exit counseling is conducted as a two-step process. The first is an in person group workshop and second is the online requirement completed at studentloans.gov. Students are provided a copy of their loan portfolio at the group session along with additional resources in the form of a letter with instructions on how to complete the second step online and several loan repayment guides and brochures. Students are advised to complete the online session after the group session, and they are also given the opportunity to schedule a one-on-one counseling appointment to discuss their loan portfolio.

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan

  • Credit-based loan
  • Not based on financial need
  • No lifetime limit
  • Annual limit is Cost of Attendance minus any other financial aid
  • 6.28% fixed interest rate as of July 1, 2021 through July 2022 and starts to accrue once the loan is disbursed
  • 4.228% loan origination fee deducted off the top of loans first disbursed on or after October 1, 2021 and before October 1, 2022
  • Repayment starts immediately once you graduate or cease to be enrolled at least half-time. However, if you have also borrowed the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan, repayment is automatically aligned with the six-month grace period and starts once this expires
  • By accepting the loan, you are authorizing a credit check to be performed and the loan to be processed with Direct Loans
  • If your Graduate PLUS Loan is denied, you may appeal the credit decision or provide a co-signer to Direct Loans
  • Deferment and forbearance are available
  • Variety of payment plans are available

Additionl Information

General Terms & Conditions

Loan Agreement(s) (Master Promissory Note)

  • First-time borrowers of federal student loans at Chicago-Kent must complete an online loan agreement known as a Master Promissory Note (MPN) with Federal Student Aid at studentloans.gov.
  • As a first-time borrower, you must submit a separate signed MPN agreement for each federal loan you choose to borrow (the Unsubsidized Loan and/or Graduate PLUS Loan) in order to receive the federal loans funds you accept.
  • The MPN completion is typically a one-time requirement, valid for 10 years. If you have an MPN agreement already on file from prior borrowing, you may not need to complete a new one.
  • Specific to Graduate PLUS Loan: There is no direct online application for the Graduate PLUS Loan through Direct Loans for Chicago-Kent College of Law. Your acceptance of the loan on the myIIT portal serves as your authorization for Direct Loans to process a credit check as this is federal credit based loan. A new credit check is processed by Direct Loans each academic year, and in some cases each time a loan is requested by the student. If a Graduate PLUS Loan is approved with an endorser or an appeal, a new MPN agreement may be required.
  • Click here to read about your options if you have been denied the Plus Loan.

Federal Loan Entrance Counseling

  • First time borrowers of federal student loans at Chicago-Kent College of Law must the complete Loan Entrance Counseling online with Federal Student Aid at studentloans.gov.
  • This is a one-time requirement for Chicago-Kent borrowers of federal financial aid.
  • Complete the combined Federal Unsubsidized and Federal Graduate PLUS Loan Counseling.
  • Please allow at least 1 week for the requirement to clear on the myIIT portal and for your funds to be disbursed to your student account accordingly.
  • Please note that the Financial Awareness Counseling (FAC) and PLUS Loan Counseling is not the same as the Federal Loan Entrance Counseling. FAC provides tools and information to help students understand their financial aid and assist them in covering the basics of financial literacy. However, FAC counseling session will not satisfy the "Loan Entrance Counseling" requirement for your federal loans at Chicago-Kent College of Law.

Federal Loan Exit Counseling

A student in a graduating/withdraw/less than half time status must complete the Loan Exit Counseling online with Federal Student Aid at studentloans.gov. This counsels the student on their rights and responsibilities of repaying their loan debt. It is considered to be step 2, the final step of the loan exit counseling process at Chicago-Kent. Step one is for the student to attend a group loan repayment workshop on campus. Students also have the option to schedule a one-on-one appointment with an Accredited Financial Counselor on campus during the scheduled loan repayment program, typically held in the spring of each term. 

A student this this status is considered to be in their six-month grace period for federal loans obtained at Chicago-Kent College of Law, as of the new status date. After the 6 month grace period the repayment period will begin. To view your loan servicers and loan history log into the National Student Loan Database System using your FSA ID to log in.

  • Even if a student plans on re-enrolling in the future at Chicago-Kent or another school this requirement is still mandatory.

For graduating students the loan exit counseling is conducted as a two-step process. The first is an in person group workshop and second is the online requirement completed at studentloans.gov. Students are provided a copy of their loan portfolio at the group session along with additional resources in the form of a letter with instructions on how to complete the second step online and several loan repayment guides and brochures. Students are advised to complete the online session after the group session, and they are also given the opportunity to schedule a one-on-one counseling appointment to discuss their loan portfolio.

Credit Check Processing for Borrowers with a Credit Freeze

As a result of recent data breach events and heightened security concerns, many consumers are understandably taking steps to protect their personally identifiable information (PII). One of those steps may be placing a "credit freeze" on their credit profile at one or more of the credit bureaus, which prevents further credit activity from occurring without additional consent.

Because a credit check is part of the process when a borrower or endorser completes a Direct PLUS Loan Request or an Endorser Addendum on the StudentLoans.gov website, borrowers or endorsers with an active credit freeze may not be able to fully complete either process and may receive an error message when the credit check is run. The borrower or endorser must remove the credit freeze first; this action cannot be done by the school or Federal Student Aid.

Federal Graduate PLUS Loan Counseling

Students who are denied the Federal Grad PLUS Loan and are approved with an endorser must complete the Grad PLUS Loan Counseling online with Federal Student Aid at studentloans.gov. It is distinct and not the same as the first-time-borrower Loan Entrance Counseling requirement. The Plus Loan Counseling must be done in one log-in session, as it cannot be saved to be finished at a later time. The Plus Loan Counseling is only valid for the credit check approval period of 180 days. If a student chooses to accept another Plus Loan after 180 days, they are authorizing another credit check to be performed by Direct Loans. If the credit check results in another denial, the student will need to repeat the entire process by either appealing the credit decision or adding an endorser and completing the Plus Loan Counseling again. Click here to read about your options if you have been denied the Plus Loan.

Origination Fees

The total amount that you borrow for each loan for the academic year is the Gross Amount. The Federal Government takes an Origination Fee off the top of the loan after loan is processed, and what is disbursed to your student account is the Net Amount (Gross Amount less Origination Fees). 

There will be no change in the Origination Fees for Direct Loans in 2022. The fees will remain the same for loans disbursed on or after October 1, 2021 and before October 1, 2022 and are as follows:

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan:   1.057%

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan:   4.228%

Interest Rates

If you receive a federal student loan, you will be required to repay that loan with interest.  The interest rate for a loan, once established, applies for the life of the loan, meaning, the loan is a fixed-rate loan. Interest starts to accrue once a federal loan is disbursed. The amount of interest that accrues month-to-month on each federal loan is determined by a simple daily interest formula determined by the U.S. Department of Education.

Effective for loans disbursed on or After July 1, 2021 through July 1, 2022:

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan:   5.28%

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan:   6.28%

Effective for loans disbursed on or After July 1, 2022 through July 1, 2023:

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan:   6.54%

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan:   7.54%