Federal Stafford Loans
There are two kinds of federal Stafford loans. The subsidized loan is based on need; the federal government “subsidizes” the interest on this loan while the student is taking classes. The unsubsidized is not need-based; it is available to students regardless of personal or family income, but the student pays the interest on it while in school. Repayment must begin six months after graduation or when students drop below the required course load.
Private (Alternate) Student Loans
Alternative (Private) student loans are credit-based funds from lending institutions that can be used to cover the full cost of attendance after students have maximized scholarships, grants, and federal loans. These loans generally will have a higher interest rate and, although repayment of the principal may be deferred, interest payments could begin immediately.
To apply online, consult this list of private lenders or, if you wish to use a lender not listed, simply go to their respective website and follow the same process.