Loans can cover any remaining balance that isn't covered by scholarships, grants, and work study. 

Cornell institutional loans

You might find out you are eligible for one of Cornell's two different institutional loans. You'll find out when you receive your financial assistance award letter. 

Mabel Sherman loan

The interest rate for the Mabel Sherman loan for the 2016-2017 academic year has been set at a fixed 3%. Each year the rate will be determined based on the usury rate in accordance with the provisions of the Iowa code section 535.2(3)(a), on July 1. Principal payments will begin one year from the first day after separation from Cornell College. Interest will begin to accrue at an annual rate of 3.000% on any delinquent principal amount at 60 months (5 years) past due.

McElroy loan

The interest rate for the McElroy loan for the 2017-2017 academic year has been set at a fixed 3%. Each year the rate will be determined based on the usury rate in accordance with the provisions of the Iowa code section 535.2(3)(a), on July 1. The set interest rate after July 1 will be below the usury rate at that time. Interest will accrue six (6) months after you leave school or are enrolled less than half time. Repayment shall not exceed 10 years.

Federal Direct Loans

You might consider low-interest loans through the Department of Education. Typical amounts vary, depending on your need. All of the steps we discuss and all of the information you need on Federal Direct Loans can be found on their website. 

Direct Subsidized Loans

  • Low-interest
  • No interest charged as long as you are enrolled at least half-time
  • Need-based
  • Must fill out the FAFSA to be eligible

Direct Unsubsidized Loans

  • Low-interest
  • Interest accrues as soon as your loan is disbursed to you
  • Principal balance is deferred
  • Available to all students regardless of need

Master Promissory Note

If you get a federal loan, you'll need to complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) the first time you borrow a Federal Direct Loan. The MPN will be used for all future federal direct loans you borrow while at Cornell.

Entrance Counseling

You'll also complete an Entrance Interview before you can borrow a Federal Direct loan.  It's a requirement.

Exit Counseling

The Department of Education will also require you to complete exit counseling with us with all at the time of graduation or if you were to withdraw college. Look for an email from us with your exit counseling information.  

Direct Consolidation Loan

Combine one or more of your Federal loans into a new loan. 

Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)

Your parents can borrow money for this loan, assuming their credit qualifies them. If you would like to see if your parent(s) would be approved for the Parent PLUS loan, you can complete the pre-approval form and return it to our office. We will be able to request a credit check to determine if your parent(s) would be approved.

Origination fees

Origination fees are deducted from the amount you borrow before the funds arrive at Cornell. Please take this into consideration if you are trying to borrow an exact amount to cover charges. Repayment begins 60 days after the last disbursement of the loan with up to ten years to repay. Other repayment plans are available. Interest and principal may be deferred in some circumstances.

Private loans

  • Credit-worthiness determines eligibility
  • Not need-based

Private education loans are credit-based consumer loans. Always consider your lowest-cost options first. Obviously, scholarships and grants should be used if you are awarded them. Federal student loans typically will be a lower-cost option over a private loan. However, private loans can be an additional funding source.