Loans are a major source of funding for college. Almost everyone can borrow. The question is how much and who pays the interest. Students can borrow and parents of dependent students can borrow to pay for college costs. Loans must always be repaid. Loan programs available to ATCC students and their parents are described below. Complete the FAFSA before applying for Loans.

Alexandria Technical & Community College participates in the Federal Direct Student Loan program and Federal Direct PLUS Loan program. Direct loans will be originated and serviced by the Federal Government. More information on Direct Loans can be found at: External Website: Dept. of Education Federal Direct Loans -

Descriptions of loans appear below.

Federal Direct Student Loan

  • Subsidized Student Loan is for students with demonstrated financial need, as determined by federal regulations. No interest is charged while a student is in school at least half-time, during the grace period, and during deferment periods. Annual loan limits apply.
  • Unsubsidized Student Loan is not based on financial need; interest is charged during all periods, even during the time a student is in school and during grace and deferment periods. Annual loan limits apply. Complete the process for a Federal Direct Subsidized and/or Unsubsidized Student Loan.

Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)/ Federal Direct Parent Loan

  • Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)/ Federal Direct Parent Loan is not a need-based loan. This is an unsubsidized loan for the parents of dependent students and for graduate/professional students. PLUS loans help pay for education expenses up to the cost of attendance minus all other financial assistance. Interest is charged during all periods. Complete the process for a Federal Direct PLUS Loan.

Private or Alternative Loans

  • Alternative Loans are really consumer loans for education in a very similar way that automobile loans are consumer loans for buying an automobile. Alternative loans are intended to be used only after all eligibility for Federal Direct and PLUS loans has been exhausted. Multiple loans require multiple payments. Excessive borrowing can lead to default. ATCC encourages you to determine your borrowing needs by preparing a budget. ATCC does not endorse any one particular lender. If you must make an alternative loan, we do provide the service of FASTChoice to assist with comparisons of lender loan options such as interest rates, fees, repayment terms and application instructions. You will be provided a historical list of lenders from which ATCC students have borrowed in the past three years.

    If you choose a loan that requires the college to certify, the loan will be disbursed according to the policies established by the college for disbursement of Federal Direct loans. You will not have access to the funds until the second week of each semester of enrollment. Your alternative loan, plus all other forms of financial aid will be limited to the cost of attendance as used for Direct loans.

    If you need money prior to the start of each semester, you may want to choose a loan that does not require the college to certify.

    If you determine you need to apply for Alternative or Private Loan, please go to: External Website: FASTChoice (ATCC Students)