Entrance Counseling Required for New Borrowers
All first time borrowers must complete Entrance Counseling, and a Master Promissory Note prior to disbursement of funds at www.StudentAid.gov. You will need your FSA ID to complete both requirements. Entrance counseling ensures that you are aware of your rights and responsibilities as a borrower. After a brief tutorial, you are required to pass a quiz which will be forwarded to Shepherd University.
Financial Awareness Counseling
Financial Awareness Counseling provides tools and information to help you understand your financial aid and assist you in managing your finances. This is a great resource for anyone currently paying for or planning to pay for higher education. You will need your FSA ID along with details on your income, financial aid and living expenses. Please visit www.StudentAid.gov to get started!
Exit Counseling Required for Borrowers
If a student has borrowed through any loan program at any institution, they are required as part of their loan agreement to complete Exit Counseling when they cease to be at least a half time student.
Federal Student Aid recipients will receive an electronic notification on the requirement to complete exit loan counseling at the www.StudentAid.gov website. If the student did not complete the online exit counseling, the university will send the PDF version of the Exit Counseling Guide for Federal Student Loan Borrowers via email to the student borrower within 30 days after the University learns that the student borrower failed to complete the exit counseling as required.
Each Direct Subsidized or Unsubsidized loan borrower and graduate student Direct PLUS loan borrower who is in the final term of the program of study will receive an electronic notification to complete exit counseling.
For administrative withdrawals, the university ensures that exit counseling is conducted within 30 days of the date the university determined the student has withdrawn.
Exit Counseling provides important information in preparation for repayment of Direct Subsidized, Direct Unsubsidized, or Graduate or professional Direct PLUS loans and the borrower’s rights and responsibilities. It includes information on the average anticipated monthly repayment amount, available repayment plan options, description of the consequences of default, availability of the information in the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS), and other information to successfully repay the federal student loans. The borrower may use the Federal Student Aid office Repayment Estimator to see the estimated monthly and total payments including the repayment plan options for which he may be eligible.
The borrower’s rights include the following:
- written information on loan obligations and information on rights and responsibilities as a borrower;
- a copy of the MPN either before or at the time the loan is disbursed;
- a grace period and an explanation of what this means;
- a notification, if the U.S. Department of Education transfers the loan to another servicer without the borrower’s consent;
- a disclosure statement, received before beginning to repay the loan, that includes information about interest rates, fees, the balance owed, and a loan repayment schedule;
- deferment or forbearance of repayment for certain defined periods, if a borrower qualifies and if requested;
- right to prepay the loan in whole or in part anytime without an early-repayment penalty; and
- documentation when the loan is paid in full.
The borrower’s responsibilities are the following:
- completing exit counseling before leaving school or dropping below half-time enrollment;
- repaying the loan according to the repayment schedule even if the borrower does not complete the academic program, dissatisfied with the education I received, or unable to find employment after graduation;
- notifying the lender or loan servicer if the borrower changes address, telephone number, name, social security number, and employer or its address or telephone number;
- making monthly payments on the loan after the grace period ends, unless the borrower has a deferment or forbearance; and
- notifying the lender or loan servicer of anything that might alter the borrower’s eligibility for an existing deferment or forbearance.