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Financing Your Education

For families and students who are interested in making incremental tuition payments, payment plans are available through Tuition Management Systems (TMS).

Many students and families borrow loans to help finance their college education.  We strongly recommend that borrowers take out federal loans before turning to private lenders.  There are two types of federal educational loans presently available to NEC students who are US Citizens or Permanent Residents: the Federal Direct Stafford Loan (for students) and the Federal PLUS Loan (for parents or graduate students). The terms and interest rates of these loans are set and monitored by the Department of Education.

Federal Direct Stafford Loan

This loan is a low-interest federal loan that is made to the student. There are two types of Stafford loans: subsidized and unsubsidized.

  • Subsidized loans are available only to domestic undergraduates who demonstrate financial need.  They are called “subsidized” because the federal government, not the student, pays the interest on these loans while the student is enrolled at least half-time and during a six-month “grace period” after the student graduates or leaves school.
  • Unsubsidized loans are available to domestic students regardless of financial need.  They are called “unsubsidized” because students are responsible for the interest these loans accrue while the student is in school; they may choose pay the interest periodically while enrolled.  Any unpaid interest will be capitalized (added to the loan’s principal) when repayment begins six months after the student graduates or leaves school.

Up to date information on the terms and conditions of this loan program can be viewed on studentaid.ed.gov.

Federal Direct PLUS Loan

This loan is a credit-based federal education loan available to graduate students and the parents of dependent undergraduate students. Borrowers with no adverse credit history may apply for up to the cost of education (for one academic year at a time), less any other financial aid.

Up to date information on the terms and conditions of this loan program can be viewed on studentaid.ed.gov.

Private Student Loans

A variety of private loan options are available to undergraduate and graduate students and/or their families. These loans are offered by private lenders and are usually credit-based. We strongly recommend that borrowers only use private loans as supplemental funding after exhausting all other sources of financial aid.

When researching loan options, we advise taking into consideration the loans’ interest rates as well as any origination, disbursement, and repayment fees. We are happy to answer questions or provide information as you work to identify the program(s) that best suit your family’s needs.