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Continuing Studies

Financial Aid and Graduate Programs

Attending graduate school opens a new door to learning beyond college. While graduate school can be complicated, getting the funding and information you need shouldn’t be.

If you’re eligible, the Federal Student Aid Program has a variety of options to help you pay for your graduate or professional education. Some programs you may qualify for include:

William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program


Graduate degree-seeking students can borrow up to $20,500 each year. No more than $8,500 of this amount may be in subsidized loans. Because you can’t borrow more than your cost of attendance minus any other financial aid you’ll get, you may receive less than the annual maximum amounts. Students interested in Direct Loans must be attending at least half time, or taking a minimum of 6 semester 14-week courses.

PLUS Loans for Graduate Degree Students


Graduate degree students are now eligible to borrow under the PLUS Loan Program up to their cost of attendance minus other estimated financial assistance. Graduate PLUS loans requirements include a determination that the applicant does not have an adverse credit history, repayment beginning on the date of the last disbursement of the loan, and a fixed interest rate of 7.9 percent in the Direct Loan Program. Graduate students also must have applied for their annual loan maximum eligibility under the Federal Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loan Program before applying for a Graduate PLUS loan. Students must be enrolled at least half time to qualify for this program.

To qualify for any of the above Federal Student Aid Programs, graduate students must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year they are attending Carthage. Review the Direct Loan Basics and Entrance Counseling Guide to learn more.