Financial Aid Office
Types of Financial Aid - Federal

Perkins Loan

The federal Perkins Loan is a need-based loan awarded to undergraduate and graduate students with exceptional financial need (the lowest EFC from the FAFSA results). Program funds are limited, awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis, so it is important to apply early for financial aid. You must have been awarded the Perkins Loan on your financial aid award letter in order to borrow under this federal loan program.

If you were awarded a Perkins Loan and decide to accept it, complete your Master Promissory Note (MPN) and entrance interview counseling at Educational Computer Systems, Inc. (ECSI), the Perkins Loan servicer for all MnSCU schools.

Effective fall 2013, all borrowers (whether or not you have borrowed under the Perkins Loan before) must complete an MPN and the entrance interview counseling. This is required even if you have already completed a Perkins Loan MPN in the past.

There are many positive features of this loan.

  • No processing or origination fees.
  • Fixed interest rate of 5%.
  • The federal government pays the interest while you are enrolled at least half-time (6 credits) and during the grace period.
  • Repayment begins 9 months after you graduate, withdraw, or enroll less than half-time (6 credits).
  • Interest begins to accrue after the 9 month grace period.

Once students are no longer enrolled in school at least half-time (6 credits), they are required to complete loan exit counseling. Perkins Loan payments will be made to ECSI. Borrowers have up to 10 years to repay the loan and under certain conditions there are loan cancellation benefits.

Questions about your Perkins Loan, including deferment, forbearance, or cancellation may be directed to the Minnesota State Colleges & Universities Student Loan Service Center.

Return to the Loans Overview Page

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