A message from VSAC: Our commitment to racial and social justice >
Students planning on college or training in the fall have much to navigate, especially this year as schools and training programs continue to adjust their plans. But whether students will be on campus or online, there’s a “to do” that is just ahead: Paying the fall semester tuition bill, as well as any other costs.
For many students (and parents), that means taking out an education loan to cover gaps between your financial aid and what’s due. Most Vermont families (nearly 7 out of 10, in fact) need to borrow to help foot the bill. So you’re not alone.
At VSAC we understand that paying for college, and student loans in particular, can be complicated. There’s a lot to consider, and we want to help make it easier. Our goal is to help students and parents better understand the details — and choices — so they borrow only what they need and minimize their cost of borrowing.
Simply put, education loans are money that you borrow that must be paid back, with interest, over usually a term of 10 or 15 years.
There are two main types of education loans: federal loans and non-federal loans.
Know more. Borrow less.
Remember, all loans are borrowed money that need to be repaid with interest. It’s important to compare all of your loan options and understand the costs and terms. You get to decide whether to accept some or all (or none) of the loan amounts offered in the student’s financial aid offer. Think carefully about how much you really need before you borrow.
If you’re facing a college bill for the fall, this list can help you confidently take the right steps (and not miss anything):
IMPORTANT: If your financial situation has changed, especially due to COVID-19, you may be able to get additional free aid. If you haven’t applied for free federal aid or a Vermont grant, you still have time. Go to vsac.org/grants for more information on how to appeal your financial aid or apply for a Vermont grant.
Still have questions or need more information? Contact us — that’s why we’re here. Call to speak with a Vermont-based counselor Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 800-226-1029; or send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.