Undergraduate Federal Perkins Loan
The Federal Perkins Loan is a low-interest, long-term loan made to needy undergraduate and graduate students to help pay for their cost of education. The University of Mississippi receives funds directly from the Department of Education and is responsible for administering the loan program on our campus. Students repay directly to The University.
Perkins Loans are need-based aid. Eligibility is based on financial need as determined by federal guidelines. Interest does not accrue on the loan for the student during:
- At least half-time enrollment in school
- The nine-month grace period after the student ceases attendance on at least a half-time basis.
- The interest rate is 5%.
- It carries no origination and guarantee fees. Many other loans may have fees of 0-4%.
- Repayment of the loan does not begin until you graduate or drop below half-time status.
- In cases of economic hardship, payments may be deferred, extended, or reduced.
- The loan is forgiven in case of permanent disability or death.
- You may be allowed up to 10 years to repay the Perkins Loan.
- Certain professions and public service activities may qualify you in the future for loan cancellation (including service in teaching, the Peace Corps, law enforcement, and nursing.)
- Perkins Loans may be consolidated with Stafford Loans for repayment purposes.
Your Perkins loan eligibility is determined by the Office of Financial Aid and is based on information you provided in the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Federal criteria include:
- Enrollment in an eligible school and degree program
- U.S. citizenship, permanent residency, or eligible noncitizen status
- Satisfactory academic progress (as determined by the Office of Financial Aid)
- No unresolved defaults or overpayments owed on Title IV educational loans and grants
- Satisfaction of all Selective Service Act requirements
Loans are usually issued for a single academic year, and both eligibility and amount are redetermined annually throughout your academic career.
Limited Perkins funds are available each year, so you must submit the FAFSA by the Office of Financial Aid’s recommended priority deadline to ensure consideration for a Perkins Loan.
Perkins Loans are available for up to $2000 during the academic year. Loans may also be available in the summer based on the level of remaining funds.
The interest rate is computed at the rate of 5% per annum simple interest on the unpaid balance.
Since federal regulations require that awards be made to the most needy students first, the Office of Financial Aid must make determinations of eligibility. Although you cannot apply specifically for a Perkins Loan, you will be automatically considered if you do the following.
- Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application online at the Department of Education's website http://fafsa.ed.gov. Be sure to file by the priority deadline each year (March 15). The University of Mississippi's school code is 002440.
- Once your FAFSA is processed, you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) documenting your financial resources and expected family contribution towards educational costs. An electronic copy will be sent to the Office of Financial Aid of the school listed on your application.
- Check your SAR for accuracy. If there are errors, follow the correction process indicated on the SAR or as instructed by the Office of Financial Aid.
- From the information obtained in the SAR and other supporting documents, we will generate an online Financial Aid Award Notification documenting the financial aid available to you including Perkins Loan eligibility.
If your aid includes a Perkins Loan, processing will include the following steps.
- The student may accept all or a part of the aid by accepting and confirming your Financial Aid Notification online.
- The student must complete Loan Entrance Counseling by completing the process on the Web site Ole Miss Online Entrance Counseling.
- Once the Financial Aid Award Notification has been accepted and submitted and Loan Entrance Counseling has been completed, complete the Perkins Loan Contract which is available online at www.olemiss.edu/depts/Financial_aid/ under the "Check Your Award Status" icon.
- Submit the contract by mailing it or returning it in person to the Bursar’s Office.
The loan proceeds will be processed through the Office of Financial Aid. Funds will credit first to your Bursar bill and any excess funds will be mailed to your permanent address or directly deposited to your personal account.