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US Student Loans

Students who are citizens or permanent residents of the United States have several funding options while attending the University of Calgary.

If you're a dual citizen of Canada and the United States, you're encouraged to explore opportunities through the Canada Student Loans program first.

If you have questions about funding options or would like to book an appointment with a US loans specialist, email usloans@ucalgary.ca.

William D. Ford Federal Direct Loans

As a Title IV eligible foreign school, UCalgary students may be considered for one of the following programs Direct Loans Program. Click on each loan type to find more information and determine your eligibility:

  • Direct Subsidized Loans Available to eligible undergraduate students who demonstrate financial need to help cover the costs of higher education at a college or career school
  • Direct Unsubsidized Loans Available to eligible undergraduate, graduate, and professional students, but in this case, the student does not have to demonstrate financial need to be eligible for the loan
  • Parent PLUS Loans Available to parents of dependent undergraduate students to help pay for education expenses not covered by other financial aid
  • Graduate PLUS Loans Available to graduate or professional students to help pay for education expenses not covered by other financial aid

As a foreign school, we are unable to disburse Pell grants to US Direct Loan applicants.

Am I eligible?

Direct Loans are available to US students studying at least half-time (three or more 3.00 credit courses per term) in an eligible degree-granting program. Students enrolled in a certificate program, Nursing, Medicine (MD program), Veterinary Medicine (DVM program) and Open Studies are not eligible for direct loans. Open Studies students should explore options through the Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan program. Direct loan borrowers may not take any exchange, group study or online delivery courses while completing their degree program.

How much can I borrow?

Loan maximums are limited by a borrower's year of study. Students can obtain direct loans to cover their calculated cost of attendance, up to the following maximums:

  Dependent Students Independent Students
Subsidized Unsubsidized Total Subsidized Unsubsidized Total
First year $3,500 $2,000 $5,500 $3,500 $6,000 $9,500
Second Year $4,500 $2,000 $6,500 $4,500 $6,000 $10,500
Third/Fourth Year $5,500 $2,000 $7,500 $5,500 $7,000 $12,500
Graduate/Professional $20,500 $20,500
Lifetime Loan Limit $23,000 $8,000 $31,000 $23,000 $34,500 $57,500
(UGRD)
$65,500 $73,000 $138,500
(GRAD)

How do I apply?

You can apply for direct loans by following these easy steps:

  1. Complete the Free Application For Student Financial Assistance (FAFSA), the University of Calgary's school code is G07874
  2. If you're a first-time loan borrower, complete Entrance Counseling
  3. E-sign your Master Promissory Note (MPN), this must be done annually
  4. Complete & submit the UCalgary US Loans Application

How do I receive my loan?

Complete applications (all required documentation must be submitted before an application will be considered complete) will be assessed within 15-20 business days. Some applications may take longer due to flags or verifications from the FAFSA.

If you're approved, you'll be e-mailed a Notification of Funding Eligibility letter outlining loan amounts and disbursements. Loan applications received prior to August 1 will be disbursed on the following schedule:

  • Disbursement 1: September (October for first year, first-time borrowers)
  • Disbursement 2: January
  • Disbursement 3: May (graduate students only)

Deadlines

Loan applications take 15–20 business days to assess. You should begin the loan process early to ensure loan funds are disbursed in time for fee payment deadlines.

To guarantee disbursement in September, you must submit your application no later than August 1.

All applications submitted after this date will be assessed within the regular 15–20 business day assessment time-frame.

Applications will be accepted up to 30 days prior to the last date of studies.

Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan

If you're ineligible for direct loans, or if you need to borrow additional funding to meet the cost of attendance, you can apply for a Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan.

Am I eligible?

Smart Option loans are available to US students studying at least half-time (three or more 3.00 credit courses per term) in an eligible program. Final eligibility is determined and assessed by Sallie Mae.

How much can I borrow?

Upon approval from Sallie Mae, you can borrow funds up to their full cost of attendance, minus any available resources and previous funding (i.e. loans, scholarships, etc).

How do I apply?

You can apply for direct loans by following these easy steps:

  1. Complete an application through Sallie Mae. The University of Calgary's school code is G07874.
  2. Complete & submit the UCalgary US Loans Application

How do I receive my loan?

Approved students will be e-mailed a Notification of Funding Eligibility letter outlining loan amounts and disbursements. Loan applications received prior to August 1 will be disbursed on the following schedule:

  • Disbursement 1: September (October for first year, first-time borrowers)
  • Disbursement 2: January
  • Disbursement 3: May (graduate student only)

Loan funds are disbursed in the form of a paper cheque mailed by Sallie Mae to the Financial Aid Office. Once the cheque arrives, students will be emailed to endorse the cheque for processing.

Deadlines

Loan applications take 15-20 business days to assess. Students are encouraged to begin the loan process as early as possible to ensure loan funds are disbursed in time for fee payment deadlines.

To guarantee disbursement in September, students must submit their application no later than August 1. All applications submitted after this date will be assessed within the regular assessment timeframe. Applications will be accepted up to 30 days prior to the last date of studies.

Veterans Affairs G.I. Bill Beneficiaries

The University of Calgary supports veterans of the US Armed Forces in obtaining their GI bill benefits while attending studies at the University of Calgary.

Am I eligible?

All GI bill recipients must meet eligibility requirements outlined by the VA. You must apply to receive your benefit.

As UCalgary is considered a Foreign School, there are some important things you need to know about how you will receive your funding.

How do I apply?

Once approved for funding by the VA, you'll need to contact the Financial Aid Office to set up direct invoicing for tuition and fee payment. You can apply for invoicing by following these steps:

  1. Complete the Beneficiary Profile form and email it to usloans@ucalgary.ca along with a copy of your VA funding eligibility/approval letter.
  2. If applicable, the Financial Aid Office will submit a program approval request to the VA on your behalf. You will be contacted by the Financial Aid Office to advise you when your program has been approved for funding.

How do I receive my funding?

Once you've registered in classes each term (initialized registration for graduate students), you must email the Financial Aid Office to advise the loans administrator that you have completed course registration.

The Financial Aid Office will submit an invoice to the VA on your behalf. Processed invoices are submitted to the University of Calgary in the form of a cheque. Once the payment has been applied to your student financial account, you may request a refund for any excess funds remaining due to the exchange rate.

Any housing allowance or additional funding will be sent to you directly by the VA.

In-School Deferment

If you've previously borrowed US loans and are continuing studies with at least half-time (three or more 3.00 credit courses per term), your enrolment may be eligible to receive In-School Deferment.

Once you have enrolled at least half-time into courses, email your In-School Deferment form to usloans@ucalgary.ca for completion. Deferment requests must be initiated by the student, and must be re-completed each academic year.