Important Information for Student Loan Borrowers

* As a student loan borrower, be aware of your rights and responsibilities.

* Be a responsible borrower. If you have borrowed more money than you need for the semester, you can always return it. There are no penalties for early repayment.

* Know your allotted grace period for each loan. If you go below half time status or withdraw from school, you will enter your grace period. If your grace period elapses and you are not enrolled, you will begin your repayment period.

* Pay off accruing interest to avoid interest capitalization when entering repayment.

* Avoid defaulting on your student loan. If you have trouble making monthly payments, contact your student loan provider or school for help and information.


Direct Stafford Loans, from the William D Ford Federal Direct Loan Program , are low-interest loans for eligible undergraduate and graduate students to help cover the cost of higher education. These federal loans are borrowed directly from the U.S. Department of Education. These loans do not require a credit check.  A small origination fee is withheld from the loan when it is disbursed to you. You do not have to make payments on Direct Stafford Loans while you are enrolled at least half-time (deferment). You also have a six month grace period after you graduate or drop below half-time enrollment before you begin repayment.


There are two types of Stafford loans: Subsidized and Unsubsidized.

Subsidized Direct loans provide low interest rates and are available to students who demonstrate financial need based on income and other information provided on the FAFSA.

    • Subsidized
      • Based on need
      • Federal government pays the interest for the borrower on this loan while he/she is enrolled at least half-time.
      • Repayment of the principal and interest on the loan begins six months after the borrower graduates or drops below half-time.
    • Unsubsidized
      • Not based on need.
      • Interest will be charged while you are enrolled. Interest and repayment of principal begins 6 months after you graduate or drop below half-time status.
      • You have the option to pay the interest as billed by the servicer throughout your schooling, or to allow the interest to be added to the principal at repayment.


Interest rates for these loans can be found at loan limit chart. 

Entrance counseling

Signing your master promissory note  

Borrower rights and responsibilities 

Exit counseling  


Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)

This loan program may be used to bridge the gap between cost of attendance and traditional need-based and/or merit-based assistance. Unlike the Federal Direct Stafford Loan, the Direct PLUS loan program requires that a borrower be creditworthy. In addition, a yearly Direct Parent PLUS loan application must be completed to confirm the borrower is creditworthy.


Important -  Please read the information on this page before clicking on the PLUS online application link at the bottom of the page

  • Parent borrower must not be in default on a federal loan
  • Parent borrower must be a biological or adoptive parent or a stepparent
  • Student must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  • A parent not included on the FAFSA remains eligible for the Parent PLUS Loan
  • Student must be enrolled at least half time
  • Parent borrowers must pass a credit check; if denied, an option to obtain a credit-worthy endorser or allow the student to borrow additional funds from the unsubsidized Stafford loan program is available
  • Credit checks are valid for 90 days; for loans to be used in the fall, do not apply before JUNE 1.

Maximum amount:

In most cases, the parent is eligible to borrow up to the cost of attendance minus any other financial aid the student receives. If in doubt, contact your student’s advisor.

If you request a specific amount, processing fees will be deducted from the amount requested. You can always check the box that says “maximum amount available” and our advisor will calculate this for you.

Additional information:


When the loan is disbursed, the Department of Education calculates a 4.204 percent processing fee which is deducted from the amount you request to borrow.

During the deferment period, accruing interest can be:

  • Paid by the parent borrower monthly
  • Paid by the parent borrower quarterly
  • Capitalized quarterly

Completing the online application:

Please go online to to complete the Parent PLUS loan application. You will need your FSA ID to sign into this secure website. If you do not have one, please apply at

This application will immediately complete a credit check and you will be able to see the decision as soon as the application is submitted. If you are a new borrower, and the credit is accepted, to expedite the loan funds please fill out the Parent PLUS master promissory note (MPN). This MPN will be valid for 10 years or until you submit a written request to close it.

Remember when prompted for the school’s state, Graceland University is located in Iowa, for financial aid purposes.

Contact information:

For help with the online application or website please contact the Loan Origination Center at 800-557-7394. For general questions about the loan, please call Student Financial Services at 641-784-5369.  For more information please read:


Online application (

Sign the master promissory note  (

Request for loan increase   



Direct PLUS Loans for Graduate and Professional Degree Students


  • Grad PLUS loans follow the same general guidelines as listed in the Parent PLUS information above, with the exception that this is the student's loan, not the parents.
  • Enrolled at least half-time in a graduate or professional program
  • Applicant needs to complete the FAFSA (
  • Loan Counseling required (
  • Processing fee: 4%
  • Interest rate: 7.9% fixed
  • Repayment starts within 60 days of the final disbursement for the current year; payments may be postponed until 6 mos. after the student has graduated or is no longer at least a half-time student
  • Repayment timeline: 10 years
  • For more information please read:   


Online application   (

Sign the master promissory note   (

Loan Entrance Counseling   (