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Federal Financial Aid Programs
Programs requiring a financial aid application (FAFSA) for determination of eligibility are:
Federal Pell Grant is a federal entitlement program provided to students who are determined to have financial need. The Pell Grant does not have to be paid back. The minimum Pell Grant is $577 and the maximum amount is $5550.
Federal SEOG Grant (Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant) is also an entitlement grant that does not have to be paid back. It is available on a limited basis to students who have an exceptional need. The award amount at WSC is $500.
North Dakota State Grant is another "need based" grant that can be applied for by completing the FAFSA. A student must be a graduate of a North Dakota high school and be enrolled as a full-time student in a North Dakota college or university. The award amount is $1500.
FEDERAL WORK PROGRAM
Federal Work Study (FWS) is a financial aid program in which a student with financial need may be provided with a job on or off campus. Students may work in various areas including office, clerical, library, bookstore, cafeteria, or buildings and grounds. WSC also participates in the America Reads Program, providing reading tutors to children in grades 1-3 in local elementary schools.
Federal Perkins Loan is a loan program in which funds received must be repaid. A student who demonstrates financial need may be eligible for this student loan at the current interest rate of 5 percent. There is a nine month grace period after the student graduates or terminates enrollment on at least a half-time basis before repayment of the principal and interest begins. The student has up to ten years to repay the Perkins Loan. All Federal Perkins loans are serviced through the Student Loan Service Center in Fargo, ND. For repayment information please refer to www.slscndus.com. The maximum award amount at WSC is $1500. An entrance counseling session must be completed before the Perkins Loan is disbursed. Please refer to Perkins Loan Rights and Responsibilities for more information regarding your loan.
The Federal Subsidized Direct Loan is a loan program available to students who are found to have financial need. This low interest loan is made to a student by the federal government, to help pay for college expenses. The interest rate is fixed at the rate that is determined every July 1. Students must be enrolled at least half-time (6 credit hours) in order to borrow a student loan. Annual limits range from $5,500 to $10,500, depending on the grade level and dependency status of the student. Once the loan has been originated, the information is submitted to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) and will be accessible by guaranty agencies, lenders, and institutions determined to be authorized users of the data system. All first-time Direct Loan borrowers must complete the entrance loan counseling and sign a Master Promissory Note (MPN) before they receive their first disbursement.
There is a six month grace period after the student graduates or terminates enrollment on at least a half-time basis before repayment of the principal and interest begins. The student is allowed up to ten years to repay the Direct Loan.
For more information on Direct Student Loans and student rights and responsibilities, please visit the Department of Education's website.
Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loans are non-need based loans. Students who may not be eligible for any or all of the Subsidized Direct Loan may apply for the difference through the Unsubsidized Direct Loan. Interest accrues during the student's enrollment, and should be paid if the student is able.
The Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act was approved by Congress and signed by President Bush on May 7, 2008. This legislation included an increase to the annual maximum of the Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loan by $2,000 for undergraduate students not to exceed the Cost of Attendance. Lifetime aggregate amounts for the Unsubsidized Direct Loan have also been increased.
Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS) is a loan available to parent(s) of dependent, undergraduate students. Parents may borrow up to the "cost of attendance" less other aid for each dependent, undergraduate child.
PLUS loans are made by the federal government at a fixed interest rate that is determined on July 1 of each year. Financial need is not a requirement for this type of loan, although approval will be based on credit information. Loan repayment begins 60 days following the disbursement date on the check. Parents may contact www.studentloans.gov to apply.