Florida Student Loans
Where to Find Federal and Private Loans
Most college-bound students trying to fund their higher education will require a combination of different forms of financial aid. Grants and scholarships are always preferred, but even these can leave students with a sizable amount of unmet need. Student loans provide the financial answer for many students looking to pay for college.
For resident students in the sunshine state, Florida's Office of Student Financial Assistance provides much needed information on all of the state's student financial aid programs. As an adjunct of the Florida Department of Education, the OSFA offers in depth college planning assistance, as well as direct help with applying for and managing all of your student loans. The OSFA can provide Florida's college-bound students with help and information on the following types of financial aid.
- Federal Family Education Loan Programs
- State-specific scholarships
- State-specific grant programs
Florida's Federal Student Loan Program
Florida's Office of Student Financial Assistance administers all of the government's Federal Family Education Loans, and acts as a lender of last resort for those state colleges and universities that are unable to process a student's financial aid needs. Regardless of the lending authority, students will want to apply for Federal education loans first, before consulting a private lending institution.
To apply for any of the Federal loan programs you will need to fill out and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Once you have filled out and submitted the FAFSA, you will receive your Student Aid Report. The SAR will detail any and all Federal financial aid programs for which you may be eligible.
The following Federal student loan programs are available to Florida residents through the state's Office of Student Financial Assistance:
- The Federal Direct Stafford Loan – This is the most popular and widely used Federal education loan program. The Stafford loan comes in both subsidized and unsubsidized forms, and feature low interest rates and flexible repayment plans. Stafford loans are available to both undergraduate and graduate students.
- The Federal direct PLUS Loan for Parents - This Federal program allows parents with undergraduate students take out a government guaranteed loan to help pay for their child's education. This credit-based loan offers a low interest, low cost alternative to private lender student loans.
- The Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Graduate and Professional Degree Students - This program offers low interest government guaranteed loans to graduate level students who have reached the limits of the Stafford loan allowances.
Resident students in need of financing for their college education should also investigate the Florida Student Scholarship and Grant Programs administered by the state. For Florida's college-bound students the opportunities for financial aid are as bright as the sunshine state itself.
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