U.S. student loans

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


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.

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 (Due to COVID 19 the CARES Act allows for US student loan borrowers to take online courses from foreign institutions).

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:

  1. First year ( Dependent Students)

    Subsidized: $3,500

    Unsubsidized: $2,000

    Total: $5,500

  2. First year (Independent Students)

    Subsidized: $3,500

    Unsubsidized: $6,000

    Total: $9,500

  3. Second Year (Dependent Students)

    Subsidized: $4,500

    Unsubsidized: $2,000

    Total: $6,500

  4. Second Year (Independent Students)

    Subsidized: $4,500

    Unsubsidized:$6,000

    Total: $10,500

  5. Third/Fourth Year (Dependent Students)

    Subsidized: $5,500

    Unsubsidized: $2,000

    Total: $7,500

  6. Third/Fourth Year (Independent Students)

    Subsidized: $5,500

    Unsubsidized: $7,000

    Total: $12,500

  7. Graduate/Professional (Independent Students)

    Subsidized: - N/A

    Unsubsidized: $20,500

    Total: $20,500

     

  8. Lifetime Loan Limit (Dependent Students - UGRD)

    Subsidized: $23,000

    Unsubsidized: $8,000

    Total: $31,000

  9. Lifetime Loan Limit (Independent Students - UGRD)

    Subsidized: $23,000

    Unsubsidized: Dependent on Subsidized

    Total: $57,500

     

  10. Lifetime Loan Limit (Professional and Graduate Students)

    Subsidized: $65,500 (obtained in UGRD)

    Unsubsidized: Dependent on Subsidized

    Total: $138,500

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 and submit the UCalgary US Loans Application

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)

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.

Smart Option loans are available to US students:

  • Attending school full-time, half-time, or less than half-time, or taking prerequisite classes
  • Taking a full class load, just a few classes, enrolled in a winter or summer term, or studying abroad
  • Who still need funds after maximizing grants, scholarships, and federal student loans
  • Seeking a professional certification or enrolled in a continuing education program
  • Taking courses that do not qualify for federal student loans

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).

You can apply for 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

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 Registrar's Office. Once the cheque arrives, students will be emailed to endorse the cheque for processing.

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.