Education Loans

Student Education Loans

How to Apply for a Federal Direct Stafford Loan

  • Make sure you have completed the completed the FAFSA.
  • Sign Your Award Letter/Loan Request Form on Empower Web and return it to the Student Financial Services Office
  • For First-Time Direct Loan Borrowers (Only). Go to and sign in. The next two steps will be done on this website.
  • Complete Entrance Counseling (First-Time Borrowers). Once signed in, click “Complete Entrance Counseling.”  Follow the instructions through to final submission.
  • Complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN) (First Time Borrowers). Once signed in, click “Complete MPN” and choose the “Subsidized/Unsubsidized” MPN option.  Follow the instructions through to final submission.
  • After you complete the online steps it will take 24-48 hours for processing before the Student Financial Services Office is notified of completion.

*Returning Direct Loan Borrowers do not need to complete steps 3-5. Your loan request will be renewed by the Student Financial Services Office using your valid MPN on file. If no valid MPN can be found Student Financial Services Office will notify you.

How to Apply for a Federal Direct PLUS Loan

  • Make sure you have completed the FAFSA.
  • Determine the Amount You Need for the Year. The Student Financial Services Office may be contacted at (619) 201-8730 to help determine the amount needed for the year.  The student may also access their account information on Empower Web to determine the amount needed.
  • Request PLUS Loan–For New and Returning Borrowers.  Log-in This is where you will request the loan amount and submit a the application for a credit check.  If you are denied the Student Financial Services Office will notify you of further options.
  • Complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN)- For New, 1st Time Borrowers Only. Log-in to The parent’s information must be used when logging in in order to request a PLUS loan.  Click the link that reads, ‘Complete MPN’ and electronically sign and submit your MPN.


How to Apply for a Federal Perkins Loan

  • Make sure you have completed the FAFSA.
  • If you are eligible to receive the Federal Perkins Loan, it will be listed as an award on your Award Letter.
  • You will be contacted by the Student Financial Services Office once school begins to complete the necessary paperwork.


How to Apply for an Alternative/Private Loan

  • Before applying for an Alternative/Private Loan, we strongly recommend you exhaust all government loan options as they offer fixed interest rates and better repayment terms.
  • Make sure you know what your balance is and the amount you need to apply for.  If you need guidance in this area, please contact the Student Financial Services Office.
  • Click here to view a list of lenders that offer Alternative/Private Loans and follow the links to apply. (This link will take you to an external site called FAST Choice which has additional educational information on Private loans, as well as links to loan options. You are welcome to apply with any lender of your choice, but this is a good place to start.)
  • Submit a Self-Certification Form with the lender.

As of February 14, 2010, borrowers are required to complete a Private Education Loan Self-Certification Form with their lender and loan application. In order to complete this form you will need to know the following: Full cost of attendance at your school for the loan period you are requesting & Estimated financial assistance you will receive (grants, loans, work study, etc).
To determine your cost of attendance see the Cost Sheet and add up charges that apply to you.  For estimated financial assistance, review your Financial Aid Award Letter.  You MUST complete the Certification Form within the timeframe the lender gives you as your loan application is subject to cancellation (by the lender), per unfulfilled documentation!  Do not delay in completing this step to avoid check-in deadlines and late fees with SDCC. If you need assistance completing the certification form please contact the Student Financial Services Office at (619) 201-8730.

Please Note: In order to provide the best customer service to our students and parents, SDCC has identified several lenders to choose from.  We have chosen these lenders based on the following criteria: interest rate, repayment reductions offered, loan benefits to the borrower, prior experience, online services, and customer service.  We do not endorse any particular lender.  You may choose any lender who offers Alternative/Private Education Loan even if they are not on the list.