Santa Clara University

Private Alternative Loans

Undergraduate students, graduate students and certificate-seeking students are eligible for private alternative loans. Private Alternative Loans can help you pay college expenses that may not be covered by federal loan programs or other financial aid. These loans are one source of additional funds used to close the gap between your financial aid resources and college costs. Private alternative loans typically have variable interest rates, however, some lenders offer fixed rate options.

We strongly encourage all students to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and consider borrowing Federal Loans prior to borrowing Private Alternative Loans.

To apply for a Private Alternative Loan

You will need to choose a lender and apply for the loan using the lender's online application on their website. You may conduct your own research and apply using any lender you wish. The Financial Aid Office will certify Private Alternative Loans from any lender. Santa Clara University has compiled a Student's Choice Lender List. This is a list of lenders Santa Clara University students have selected as their private alternative loan lenders.

NOTE: You can also find additional information on how to choose your lender by reviewing our Guide to Choosing a Lender. These resources may assist you in determining the best lender for you. Santa Clara University does not recommend one lender over another and we will certify an alternative loan from any lender.

Regulation mandate that each student who borrows from a private alternative loan lender be required to complete a Self-Certification form. Your alternative loan lender is required by law to have your signed Self-Certification form in their possession before your loan can be disbursed. In most cases, your lender will request that you complete this form as part of the loan application process.

Once you choose a lender, apply using the lender's website and complete the Self-Certification form. The lender will notify you of the results of your credit check and, if approved, will notify the school of your loan request and approved credit. The Financial Aid Office will certify your loan and communicate with the lender directly to request loan disbursements for the beginning of each quarter. The loan will be disbursed in three equal disbursements; one at the beginning of the fall quarter, one at the beginning of the winter quarter and one at the beginning of the spring quarter.

NOTE: Loans for summer are distributed at the beginning of the session for which you are enrolled.

Regulations require lenders to provide additional loan disclosures to borrowers in addition to a required "waiting period" prior to the first loan disbursement, the "waiting period" could cause delays of up to 3-4 weeks for disbursement.

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