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Federal Nursing Loan (NSL)

Eligibility: FAFSA filed; must demonstrate financial need

Interest Rate: 5.0%, fixed rate; interest does not accrue during deferment and grace periods

Award Amount: Awarded to students in selected Nursing Programs for the academic year with disbursements divided equally between fall and spring terms

Notes: These low-interest loans are made with government funds through a school's financial aid office. The school acts as the lender. You are not responsible for paying the interest on the loan while enrolled as at least a half-time student.

•  After you stop attending school at least half time, your grace period begins.

•  Your initial grace period is nine months. If you re-enroll as a nursing student during this grace period and are approved for an in-school deferment, you get another 9-month grace period the next time you stop attending school. If you re-enroll after your initial grace period has ended, you are not eligible for another grace period.

•  Repayment begins after the grace period ends.

•  The maximum repayment period is 10 years.

•  Regular payments are expected, usually each month, though your school might use a quarterly billing cycle.

•  The minimum monthly payment is $40, but may be higher depending on your balance.

•  You may prepay your loan at any time without penalty. Prepayment may substantially reduce your interest costs.

If you ever have difficulty repaying your loan, contact your servicer immediately, as you may have options.