Step 1: Do I Really Need a Federal Student Loan?
Borrowing is a responsibility. Be sure to consider all your funding options and make sure borrowing is right for you before making a long-term commitment to loan repayment.
- Plan ahead: Review typical costs for tuition, fees and books at MCC (link to new COA webpage) and write down your monthly expenses and income. Try to cover your monthly expenses with your income and use financial aid only for tuition, fees, books and expenses directly related to your education.
- Apply for scholarships and grants: These are funds that do not have to be repaid, but may take an investment of your time to secure funding.
- Consider asking your employer for tuition assistance or reimbursement: Many regional and national employers offer funding assistance for education. Local employers may also be willing to assist. Don’t be afraid to ask, especially if you can demonstrate how your education benefits your employer.
- Take advantage of tax benefits or incentives that are associated with your tuition and/or student loans. You can also visit the IRS website for general information about your taxes; whether you need to file, forms, how to file, how to get a tax transcript, and much more.
If you find you need a student loan to help fund your education, borrower only what you need and know your rights and responsibilities and monthly payment obligations. MCC and your federal student loan servicer can help you stay on track with your monthly payments.
- Estimate the amount of debt you can afford: Use a repayment calculator to understand the cost of monthly payments and use the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook to get a reasonable estimate of your future salary based on your career goal.
- Make interest-only payments on your student loans while you’re in school: Paying interest on your federal unsubsidized loans saves you money in the long run.
- If you are struggling to make loan payments, call your loan servicer: Your loan servicer will assist you in finding a payment plan that fits your budget and can help postpone payments if you have a financial or other hardship. To view what repayment options work for you click HERE
- Stay on schedule: Repaying your student loans on time each month may help you build an excellent credit history.
- Prepay your student loan: There are no prepayment penalties and you’ll save on the total interest due.
If you’re struggling to make payments, get help now!
We’ve teamed up with Solutions at ECMC to answer all of your student loan repayment questions. Solutions is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping students manage educational loans and their resources are available to you free of charge. To contact a Solutions Student Loan Repayment Advisor, email or Web chat, or call them at 877.331.3262.
Step 2: Accept My Loan Award
- Login to the MCC Online Financial Aid System, also known as NetPartner
- Click the “Accept Awards” tab
- Accept your awards and then go to your Course and Fee Statement in JICS to make sure your aid shows as “pending” on your student account
- Once aid shows as “pending”, you are ready to register for classes
Step 3: Complete My Loan Request Form
- The Loan Request Form helps you understand whether or not you need to borrow a federal student loan, and if yes, help you borrow only what you need to help with educational expenses.
- You will need the names, addresses and phone numbers for three references to complete the form. MCC will verify that your references are reachable, so be sure to provide accurate information to speed up processing of your federal student loan.
- This is part of entrance counseling and is required annually.
Step 4: First-Time Borrowers
Complete Annual Online Entrance Counseling and Other Loan Requirements
A first time borrower (FTB) is defined as a first-time freshman who is borrowing federal Direct Loans for the first-time, or a student who requesting a new federal Direct Loan for the first time or since paying off their prior federal student loans. Your first loan disbursement will be delayed 30 days from the start of your first semester.
The following are federal and institutional requirements:
Step 5: Continuing Borrowers
Complete Financial Aid Awareness Counseling
Online Financial Aid Awareness is a federal requirement to help you understand your rights and responsibilities as a federal student loan borrower.
- You will need your FSA ID to login to online Financial Aid Awareness Counseling.
Step 6: Save Your Seat – Be Financially Complete
To save your registration for the Spring 2017 semester, you must have pending financial aid that will cover your entire tuition and fee bill showing on your Course and Fee Statement in JICS for the Spring semester.
- Sign up for a payment plan and prepare for monthly payments to cover the full bill, or the remaining balance after financial aid pays,
- Pay in full for your courses, or
- Utilize financial aid to cover all or part of your bill.
Pending financial aid must be in place prior to registering for the upcoming semester. If you do not see pending aid on your Course and Fee Statement, you must pay in full or sign up for a payment plan no later than January 6, 2016 for the Spring semester.
To ensure your classes are reserved for Spring, sign up for the payment plan when you register.
Step 7: Complete My Annual Exit Counseling
- Online Exit Counseling is a federal requirement to help you understand the many options to help you successfully repay your Federal Direct Student Loans.
- You will receive requests to complete Exit Counseling each time you withdraw from all classes, drop below half-time enrollment (5 credits or less) or graduate from MCC. In addition, all borrowers receive a request to complete Exit Counseling at the completion of each semester to make sure you have the information you need to repay your Federal Direct Student Loans if you are unable to return to school within your 6 month grace period.
- Remember, Federal Direct Student Loans are a debt and must be repaid.
Click here to complete your online Exit Counseling.