SOURCE: NextStudent

September 10, 2007 12:52 ET

Graduate Students Can Receive up to $20,500 a Year With Stafford Loans From NextStudent

PHOENIX, AZ--(Marketwire - September 10, 2007) - For graduate and professional degree students trying to meet the costs of their degree programs, Federal Stafford Loans from NextStudent, a leading Phoenix-based education funding company, could provide the financing they need, with up to $20,500 a year available for tuition, program fees, materials and other school-related expenses. Awarded both with and without consideration of financial need, Stafford loans provide eligible graduate students with a flexible, non-credit-based financing option that allows them to postpone repayment until they've finished their studies or stopped attending school at least half time.

Stafford loans are low-interest, federal student loans available to both graduate and undergraduate students for education-related expenses. While subsidized Stafford loans are awarded on the basis of financial need, unsubsidized Stafford loans are non-need-based, so eligible graduate students can qualify for unsubsidized Stafford aid regardless of their income or assets. With a subsidized Stafford loan, borrowers don't pay any interest while they're in school, in deferment, or in a grace period. With an unsubsidized Stafford loan, interest accrues even when borrowers aren't making payments (for example, while they're in school, in deferment, or in a grace period), and that interest will be added to their student loan amount once repayment begins.

Federal Stafford Loans feature several borrower benefits:

  • No credit check
  • No prepayment penalties
  • Fixed interest rate
  • No payments while in school, so graduate students can focus on their studies instead of on repaying their Stafford loan
  • Forbearance and hardship deferment periods during repayment for borrowers who are having trouble making their monthly payments
  • Six-month grace period before repayment begins
  • Student Loan Consolidation benefits, so borrowers consolidating their Stafford loan(s) can take advantage of all the benefits of federal student loan consolidation, including extended repayment terms that give them more time to repay

Eligible graduate and professional degree students can borrow up to $20,500 a year in graduate Stafford loans, up to a maximum of $138,500 in total Stafford loan debt (which includes any undergraduate Stafford loans they may have received).

Graduate students applying for a Stafford loan must file a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). To be eligible for a graduate Stafford loan from NextStudent, students must be enrolled or accepted as at least a half-time student in an eligible graduate or professional degree program and must maintain satisfactory academic progress, as determined by their school. Stafford applicants must also be U.S. citizens or permanent residents, and they may not be in default on any federal student loans.

Graduate and professional degree students interested in a Federal Stafford Loan from NextStudent should contact their school's financial aid office for the Stafford application deadline.

About NextStudent

NextStudent, Federal Lender Code 834051, is dedicated to helping students and their families find affordable ways to pay for college. NextStudent offers one-on-one education finance counseling and has a portfolio of highly competitive education finance products and services, including a free online scholarship search engine, federally guaranteed parent and student loans, private student loans, both federal and private student loan consolidation programs, and college savings plans.

The NextStudent Scholarship Search Engine, one of the nation's oldest and largest scholarship search engines, is updated daily, available free of charge, completely private -- and represents 2.4 million scholarships worth $3.4 billion.

For more information about NextStudent and its student loan programs, please visit the NextStudent website at www.nextstudent.com.

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