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Pepperdine | Graziadio Business School

Federal Direct Stafford Loans

The Unsubsidized Stafford Loan is not interest-free at any time. However, the interest and principal payments may be deferred while the student is in school at least half time, during the grace period, and during authorized periods of deferment. If the interest payments are deferred, the interest will continue to accrue and will be added (capitalized) to the principal balance once repayment begins.

Loan Limits:

  • $138,500 Lifetime Aggregate

How To Apply

To apply for a student loan, students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). 

Interest Rate

The interest rate is fixed for the life of the loan.

Loan Fees

The Stafford Loan and Graduate PLUS have an upfront origination fee charged by the government.

No Prepayment Penalty

The Stafford Loan can be repaid in full or in part at any time without penalty. Prepayments are applied first to any accrued interest and then to the loan principal.

No Credit Check for Stafford Loan

Because the Stafford Loan is guaranteed by the federal government to the bank, there is no credit check required for students. However, the student cannot be in default on a prior student loan.

Grace Period

Both loan types have a grace period which means the student does not have to begin making payments until six months after graduating or dropping below half-time attendance.

Repayment Options

The Stafford Loan is repaid over a ten-year period following the end of the grace period. There are many types of payments available to students. In order to request a specific repayment option, please contact your lender.

  • Standard repayment (the same payment every month for up to ten years)
  • Graduated repayment (the payment starts small and gradually increases over the ten-year time frame)
  • Income-sensitive repayment (the payment is dependent upon your income and is adjusted each year for up to ten years)
  • Extended repayment (the eligible borrowers receive payment relief through a lengthened repayment term of up to 25 years.)
  • Consolidation (the Federal Consolidation Loan program allow borrowers to refinance one or more federal education loans and significantly lower their monthly repayment by extending the payback period.  The original loans are paid in full, and a new loan for the combined balances is issued with new terms, including a new, low-interest rate that is fixed for the life of the loan.)
  • Pay As You Earn (you must have a partial financial hardship. You have a partial financial hardship if the monthly amount you would be required to pay on your eligible federal student loans under a 10-year Standard Repayment Plan is higher than the monthly amount you would be required to repay under Pay As You Earn.)

Loan consolidation

Through the Federal Consolidation Loan program,  all of your eligible loans are combined into one new loan.


The federal government offers deferments on this loan  for periods of:

  • Enrollment in school
  • Study in a graduate fellowship program
  • Rehabilitation training program for disabled individuals
  • Unemployment
  • Economic hardship

Please contact your lender to request the appropriate forms.