Stafford Student Loan

The Federal Stafford Loan Program enables eligible students to borrow funds directly from the U.S. Department of Education to help pay the expenses of their University education. Students with financial need are eligible for a Subsidized Stafford Loan. Students without financial “need” are eligible for an Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. Maximum subsidized Stafford Loan amounts yearly are $3,500 for freshmen, $4,500 for sophomores, $5,500 for juniors, seniors and fifth-year undergraduates, and $8,500 for graduate students. However, required adjustments frequently reduce the actual amount for which an individual applicant is eligible. The interest rate is capped at 6.8%. For Subsidized Stafford Loans, interest does not begin to accrue and repayment does not start until six months after the recipient graduates or drops to less than one-half time status. For Unsubsidized Stafford Loans, interest starts to accrue at the time the loan is disbursed. Submission of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid is required.

Federal Perkins Loan

This is a low-interest loan available primarily to full-time students. Interest accrual and loan repayment begin nine months after graduation. Annual awards range from $1000 to $2,400.


The Federal PLUS program provides loan assistance to parents of dependent undergraduate and graduate students. The Federal PLUS interest rate varies from year to year. PLUS loan applications and information are available from the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid.

Short-Term Loan Funds

Short-term loan assistance is made available by such donors as the faculty and staff of UNO, the Alumni Association, Faye L. Hickey, Ben Garman, Alpha Kappa Delta, Sigma Gamma Rho, Phi Delta Gamma, UNO Parents Association and Rotary International. Application and eligibility information may be obtained from the Office of Financial Aid. Typical loan amounts range from $50-$300 with 30-60 days allowed for repayment.

Return of Title IV Funds Policy

The Higher Education Amendments of 1998 established new provisions that may require a certain percentage of Federal financial aid (Title IV funds) to be returned to the Department of Education or lender when a student completely withdraws from all classes. Federal funds that may have to be returned, in order of their required return are: Federal Unsubsidized Stafford Loan, Federal Subsidized Stafford Loan, Federal Perkins Loan, Federal PLUS Loan, Federal Pell Grant, Federal SEOG, ACG and SMART Grant.

When a student officially, or unofficially withdraws (i.e. quits attending class), during the first 60 percent of the semester, and has received or was eligible to receive federal Title IV funds, the Financial Aid Office is required to perform a Return of Title IV funds calculation as follows:

  • Step One: Determine how much Title IV aid was earned by the student. This is calculated by dividing the number of days a student attended by the total number of days in the semester (percent of aid earned), and then multiplying that percentage by the total amount of Title IV aid disbursed, or that could have been disbursed.
  • Step Two: Determine the Title IV aid to be disbursed to student. If the student received less Title IV aid than earned from step one, a post-withdrawal disbursement will be made. This situation may occur in a case where federal aid was approved, or a loan certified, but not yet disbursed before the student withdrew.
  • Step Three: Determine the amount of unearned Title IV aid that must be returned by UNO. UNO must return the lessor of the amount of Title IV aid that the student does not earn, or the amount of tuition and fee charges that the student incurred for the semester multiplied by the percentage of Title IV aid not earned. Title IV funds that have to be returned by the school will result in a university obligation to the student. The student will receive a bill from the Cashiering/Student Accounts Office.
  • Step Four: Determine the amount of unearned Title IV aid to be returned by student. Any federal grant funds that are calculated to be returned by the student will be returned by the school so a federal overpayment situation does not result and will be included in the amount billed in step three. Any loan funds required to be returned by the student would be returned in accordance with the terms of the promissory note.

An aid recipient should contact the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid prior to withdrawal from the University. Upon request, the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid will provide written examples of various return of funds calculations.