Loans

A Westminster education is worth investing in, but figuring out which loan is right for you can be daunting. So this page is your one-stop-shop to understanding the loans on your award letter—or any other loans you’re considering.

International students may be eligible for loans sponsored by US lenders provided they apply with a loan co-signer who is a US citizen or a permanent resident.

Types of Loans

Federal Stafford Loans are long-term, low-interest loans awarded to students by the Westminster College Financial Aid Office and are funded through the William D. Ford Federal Direct Student Loan Program. Eligibility for these loans is not based on credit history or income. These can be subsidized or unsubsidized, but we’ll explain that later.

Federal Perkins Loans are low-interest federal student loans for undergraduate and graduate students with exceptional financial need.

PLUS Loans are federally-funded loans awarded to parents of dependent undergraduate students to meet the costs of higher education.

Alternative Education Loans are loans offered by private lenders.

Applying for Federal Loans

Applying for loans is straightforward. Start by filling out the FAFSA. If you’re undocumented, we only require tax forms (from parents or students depending on the age of the student) to apply for loans. Learn more about undocumented student resources.

The federal government uses information from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine what federal financial aid you qualify for. This includes grants, low-cost loans, and work study.

Basically, it’s a chance to get money to pay for college. Who wouldn’t want that?

How to Submit a FAFSA

The FAFSA form is available October 1, for the upcoming fall semester. Once we receive your FAFSA application electronically, we will review the information and award you as soon as possible.

The FAFSA application must be submitted each academic year.

1

Create Your Account

Create a username and password at fafsa.ed.gov.

Parent(s) will have to create their own FAFSA ID.

2

Select Your Year

Selet the academic year you will be attending.

3

Pull Your Tax Information

Use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to pull your tax information into your FAFSA.

4

Submit to Westminster

Submit your FAFSA to Westminster using Westminster College (Utah) Federal Code 003681.

5

Receive Results

Receive the FAFSA results and review your Student Aid Report (SAR).

Start a FAFSA

First-Time Loan Borrowers

If you have never borrowed a Federal Perkins or Stafford Loan, you will be required to complete Loan Entrance Counseling. This will provide you with useful information regarding what your loan terms are and how loan repayment will work. You can complete Stafford Loan Entrance Counseling online.

Federal Stafford Loans

Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans

We promised we’d explain later. Here’s the rundown: There are two types of Federal Stafford loans, subsidized and unsubsidized. Loans must be repaid, but students are not required to make payments on either type of loan while enrolled at least half-time in an eligible educational institution. However, students may choose to make regular or interest-only payments while enrolled.

  • Subsidized Stafford Loans are awarded to students who demonstrate financial need. These loans are interest-free while the student is enrolled at least half-time at an eligible educational institution or during authorized deferment periods. Interest is charged when the loan is in a repayment or forbearance status.
  • Unsubsidized Stafford Loans are awarded regardless of a student's demonstrated financial need. These loans generate interest charges as soon as they are disbursed. The interest charges may be deferred during enrollment (at least half-time) and deferment periods, but they will be capitalized (added to the outstanding loan balance).

The amounts awarded on the Federal Stafford Loans are based on a student's academic level and status as either a dependent or independent of their parents as determined on the FAFSA. To determine your maximum loan eligibility, see the dependent undergraduate and independent undergraduate tables below. Dependent undergraduate students may borrow up to a total of $31,000 (no more than $23,000 may be subsidized). Independent undergraduate students and dependent undergraduate students whose parents are unable to borrow through the Federal PLUS Program may borrow up to a total of $57,500 (no more than $23,000 may be subsidized).

Dependent Undergraduate Students

Cumulative College Credit HoursAcademic LevelStafford Loan Amount
0-27First-Year Student$5,500
28-59Sophomore$6,500
60+Junior/Senior$7,500

Independent Undergraduate Students

Cumulative College Credit HoursAcademic LevelStafford Loan Amount
0-27First-Year Student$9,500
28-59Sophomore$10,500
60+Junior/Senior$12,500

These amounts indicate the federal maximums. Individual student loans are based on the student's need level, expected costs, other financial aid, and additional factors.

Students awarded a Stafford Loan will be required to sign a Master Promissory Note during the first academic year that the funds are borrowed. The loan amount will be applied directly to the student's account once a Master Promissory Note has been signed and the student has completed Stafford Loan Entrance Counseling. Your information will be submitted to NSLDS and other authorized parties will have access.

Loan repayment usually begins six months after the student graduates, leaves school, or drops below half-time enrollment. Repayment will initially be scheduled for fixed monthly payments over a 10-year period. Other repayment options are also available. Find your loan information and servicer.


Federal Perkins Loans

Perkins Loans are low-interest federal student loans for undergraduate and graduate students with exceptional financial need. New loans are no longer offered under the Federal Perkins Loan program, but if you have an existing Perkins loan, we provided repayment information below.

Borrowers in repayment may make payments directly to the Westminster College cashier by calling 801.832.2135 or mailed to Westminster College Attention Perkins Loan. Questions on the Federal Perkins Loan may be directed to 801.832.2129.

Payments, automatic payments, deferments, and other requests can be handled by the servicer UNISA Inc.

UNISA Inc.
7400 E Arapahoe Rd. Ste 10
Englewood CO 80112-1279
800.875.8910
unisainc.com


PLUS Loans

Parents of dependent undergraduate students may choose to apply for a PLUS loan to assist in meeting the cost of education. The student must be attending school at least a half-time (six credit hours for undergraduate students) in an approved program.

Approval for a PLUS loan is based on a credit check. However, this credit check is more modest as it is not usually debt-to-income or credit score driven; rather, it determines whether the parent has an adverse credit history. An adverse credit history is defined as being 90 or more days late on any debt or having Title IV debt (including a grant overpayment) within the past five years subjected to default determination, bankruptcy discharge, foreclosure, repossession, tax lien, wage garnishment, or write-off.

Students whose parents are unable to obtain a credit approval for a PLUS loan may qualify for additional funding through the Federal Stafford loan program. Parents who wish to apply for a PLUS loan must first complete a FAFSA form.

Complete the following steps to apply for a Federal PLUS Loan:


Alternative Loans

Alternative loans are private loans offered to students to help pay for college. Since the loans are privately funded, the terms and conditions will vary based on the lender. This also means that interest rates and fees are not federally regulated and are set by the individual lenders. Students are highly encouraged to carefully review the details of private loans before applying. Whenever possible, students considering alternative loans are encouraged to first consider federal student loans as the terms and conditions of federal loans may be more favorable than the provisions of alternative loans.

Eligibility for an alternative student loan is determined by the lender. In most cases, a student will need a co-signer in order to be approved. The lender will provide the student with an applicant self-certification form. Once the loan has been approved by the lender, the Westminster College Financial Aid Office will need to certify the loan amount.

Westminster College adheres to a Code of Conduct for Private Education Loans.

The Higher Education Act requires Westminster College (referred to throughout this document as “the institution”) to develop, administer, and enforce a Code of Conduct with respect to private education loans. This Code of Conduct addresses standards of business for the working relationships between college officials and private loan lenders.

A private education loan is any loan that is not under Title IV of the HEA and is issued to a borrower expressly for postsecondary education expenses, regardless of whether the loan is provided through the institution that the student attends or directly to the borrower from the lender.

I. Revenue-sharing Arrangements with Any Lender

The institution will not enter into any revenue-sharing arrangement with any lender. Specifically, the institution will not recommend a lender or loan products of a lender in exchange for a fee or other material benefit, including revenue or profit sharing.

II. Gifts

No agent for the institution who is employed in the Financial Aid Office or who has responsibilities with private education loans may solicit or accept any prohibited gift from a lending institution. Prohibited gifts include: any gratuity, favor, discount, entertainment (including expenses for shows, sporting events, or alcoholic beverages), hospitality (including private parties of select training or conference attendees), loan, or other item having a monetary value of more than a de minimus amount. A gift includes services, transportation, lodging or meals whether provided in kind, by purchase of a ticket, payment in advance, or reimbursement after the expense has been incurred.

An agent of the institution may accept items of a de minimus amount from a private education lender that are offered as general marketing or advertising or to create good will. Examples of de minimus gifts include, but are not limited to: pens or pencils, notepads, sticky-notes, rulers, calculators, small tote bags, calendars, and other office supply items.

III. Philanthropic Gifts and Contributions to the Institution

The College will not accept any philanthropic contributions from a lending institution that are related to the loans that are provided to our students, or that is provided to gain an advantage related to private education loans. In addition, we will not accept scholarships or grants from a private lending institution in exchange for loan applications or referrals for applications, or for a specific volume or dollar amount of private loans received.

The College may accept philanthropic contributions from a lender that are not related to the loans provided to our students, or that is not provided in exchange to receive an advantage related to private education loans.

IV. Consulting or Other Contractual Arrangements

An agent of the institution who is employed in the Student Service Center and/or has direct responsibilities with the private education loan programs may not accept from any lending institution any compensation for any type of consulting arrangement or other contract to provide services to or on behalf of the lender. An agent of the institution can be permitted to engage in these consulting activities as long as they are not employed in the Financial Aid Office or as long as they do not have direct responsibilities related to private education loans.

V. Choice of Lender

Agents of the institution will not:

  1. Assign the student’s loan to a particular lender
  2. Encourage or influence the student to choose a specific lender
  3. Show preference for one lender over another
  4. Refuse to certify, or cause delays in loan processing for a borrower based on their choice of lender

VI. Opportunity Pools

For purposes of this document, an opportunity pool is defined as a private education loan made by a lender to a student attending this institution or the student’s family member that involves the College paying points, premiums, additional interest, or financial support to the lender for the purpose of that lender extending credit to the borrower.

The institution will not request or accept an offer of funds from an opportunity to be used for private education loans.

VII. Staffing Assistance

The institution will not request or accept from any lender any assistance with call center staffing or financial aid office staffing.

VIII. Advisory Board Compensation

An agent for the institution with direct private education loan responsibilities may not accept anything of value in exchange for service on an advisory board established by a lending institution. If an agent of the institution without private education loan responsibilities does serve on an advisory board established by a lending institution, the agent may accept compensation for reasonable expenses incurred by that service

    The amount available to be borrowed in alternative loan funding will vary by student. The certified loan amount cannot exceed the student's cost of attendance less any other financial aid received. If the amount approved by the lender is higher than the allowable maximum, it will be reduced by the school.

    Students should contact the lender of their choice for application instructions. Additional information about alternative loans and a historical list of lenders that Westminster has worked with in the past can be found on FASTChoice.

    LOAN OPTIONS FOR STUDENTS LOAN OPTIONS FOR PARENTS

    Most lenders have online applications. We advise students to pursue all other source of funding before applying for an alternative loan. Please be sure to carefully review all terms and conditions before completing an application.

    Check out all your financial aid options.

    Learn more