Federal Direct Loan (Subsidized)

This page is in the process of being updated for the 2018-2019 school year

Loan Information for 2017-2018

The Federal Direct Loan is a federal loan program where students borrow directly from the Federal Government instead of from a bank or other lending institution.

A community college student may borrow up to $3,500 as a first year student and up to $4,500 as a second year student.

  • You are considered a first year student if you have completed less than 30 units based on your current program or major.
  • You are considered a second year student if you have completed 30 or more units based on your current program or major.
  • Basic skill units, ESOL units, and units that do not apply to your current program or major do not count when determining your year in school status.

Interest rates for 2017-2018

The interest rate is set each school year for disbursements on or after July 1st. The interest rates are shown below.

Fixed Rates for Loans First Disbursed on or After July 1, 2017

LOAN TYPEGRADE LEVELFirst Disbursed Between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018 caps on interest rates 

Subsidized/Unsubsidized Loans




PLUS Loans




Borrowers are required to pay an origination and insurance fee. These fees are deducted from the proceeds of the loan.
For loans disbursed between July 1, 2017 and September 30, 2017, the origination fee is 1.069%.
For loans disbursed on or after October 1, 2017 through September 30, 2018 the origination fee is 1.066%.

General Loan Eligibility Requirements

  • The maximum total subsidized loan amounts you can receive as an undergraduate student is $23,000.

Aggregate Loan Limits: Maximum Total Outstanding Loan Debt

Dependent Undergraduate StudentsIndependent Undergraduate Students*
Undergraduate $31,000 (maximum $23,000 subsidized) $57,500 (maximum $23,000 subsidized)
Graduate and Professional N/A$138,500

New Lifetime Limits (150% of Program)

Effective July 1, 2013, students who are considered new borrowers will have a lifetime limit on Subsidized loan eligibility of 150% of their declared/enrolled program. A new borrower is a student who has a $0 (zero) balance of loans in repayment. This includes students who have never borrowed a Subsidized loan and students who previously borrowed a Subsidized loan and who have repaid the loan or will repay the loan in the future so that the balance is now $0.

The 150% limit is based on each student's program. In general, students at a community college are usually enrolled in a two year Associate's degree program. Therefore, they will be limited to three years of Subsidized loan eligibility. Once students reach the 150% limit, they will no longer be eligible for Subsidized loans at a two year school.
Students who transfer to a four year university will receive a new limit at that school which generally will be up to six years. Students who transfer from a four year university and who have borrowed three years of Subsidized loans prior to attending a community college will not be eligible for any Subsidized loan because they will have already reached the 150% limit.

General Loan Eligibility Requirements

  • You must be officially enrolled in and keep 6 or more units each semester with at least 1 class at San Diego City College
  • Only classes taken at City, Mesa, Miramar or ECC will be counted towards your enrollment status
  • You must maintain continuous half-time enrollment for the entire loan period to receive your loan payments
  • If you drop or withdraw below 6 units at any time, you will not be eligible to receive your loan payments
  • If your loan period is for one semester only, you will only be eligible for up to 1/2 of the annual loan amount
  • If your loan period is for one semester your loan will be disbursed in two disbursements
  • If you enroll in classes that start later in the semester, your loan disbursement will be delayed until after the start date of the late class that brings your enrollment up to 6 or more current units
  • Loan requests must be submitted by the specified deadlines or your request will not be processed
  • You cannot receive a loan once the loan period has ended
  • You must be making Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) as published in the San Diego Community College District Financial Aid Bulletin. Click the link to the right of this page called Satisfactory Academic Progress to review the new SAP standards
  • You must not be in Default on any Title IV Federal loan or owe an overpayment or repayment on any Federal Grant from any institution
  • You must have unmet need based on your FAFSA application for a Subsidized loan
  • You must meet and maintain all other Federal eligibility requirements

Entrance counseling

All first time borrowers must complete an online entrance interview at: StudentLoans.gov. Sign in with your Federal FSA ID and click on the entrance counseling link.

After successfully completing the online entrance interview, select San Diego City College as your school of choice. Print your confirmation and bring it to the Financial Aid Office along with your completed Direct Loan Request form.

Additional Loan Counseling Required for Certain Students

San Diego City College is participating in an experiment with the U.S. Department of Education that requires certain students to complete Additional Loan Counseling before their loan can be disbursed. Continuing borrowers will be divided into two groups.

The Control group will not have to comply with the Additional Loan Counseling.

The Treatment group will be required to comply with the Additional Loan Counseling requirement.

Students will be divided into the groups at random. Failure for students in the Treatment group to complete the Additional Loan Counseling will result in their loan disbursement being put on hold.

Electronic Master Promissory Note (eMPN)

  • You must complete and sign your MPN electronically on the Internet. The electronic MPN (eMPN) may be signed at:
    Click on the link "Sign Master Promissory Note".
  • The eMPN is now a multi-year document. It will be valid for up to 10 years at San Diego City College and you will not have to complete and sign a new eMPN every year.
  • You can sign your eMPN at any time even before you submit your loan request.
  • You will be required to use your U.S. Department of Education FSA ID to complete an electronic MPN. To apply for a FSA ID, click this link, FSA ID.
  • Once you sign the eMPN, the U.S. Department of Education will update their database and send an acknowledgement to our school.  If you request a paper MPN, the U.S. Department of Education will print and send you a copy of your MPN.  After signing your eMPN and successfully completing the online entrance interview, select San Diego City College as your school of choice, print your confirmation and you are now ready to submit your Direct Loan Request form. 

Direct Loan Request Form

You can download and print the Direct Loan Request form by clicking this link, Direct Loan Request form.

On your Loan Request form you will need to provide four different references or contact persons that all have a different address than you and that have a different address from each other and who will know how to contact you. You will need to provide their name, complete mailing address, phone number and relationship.

References to be provided include the following:

  • Parent or other adult relative
  • Grandparent or other adult relative
  • Friends or Neighbors

After submitting your loan request, it may take a minimum of 2-4 weeks for your loan to be processed. During our peak periods, it may take longer.

Provided all other conditions, time frames and loan eligibility requirements have been met, your Direct Loan will be set up for disbursement.

Important Deadline Dates

  • December 1, 2017 - Last day to submit your loan request for the Fall 2017 semester only
  • December 16, 2017 - Last day of the Fall 2017 semester
  • May 11, 2018 - Last day to submit your loan request for the Spring 2017 semester
  • May 26, 2018 - Last day of Spring 2018 semester
  • Summer dates to be determined

First Year, First Time Borrowers

  • First Year, First Time Borrowers cannot receive their first loan disbursement until a minimum of 30 days after the start of the semester
  • First Year means you have not completed 24 or more units in your current program or major at San Diego City College
  • First Time Borrower means you have not received a FFEL or Direct Loan from any other college

You may also be required to submit a student education plan if you want to be considered for a second year loan amount. The actual loan amount for which you are eligible will be determined by the Financial Aid Office. You must have financial need to qualify for a Subsidized loan and you must repay the loan.

Loan data and NSLDS accessibility

When you apply for a Federal Direct Loan, your loan data will be transmitted to the National Student Loan Database System (NSLDS). Your loan data at NSLDS may be disclosed to Third Party agencies that San Diego City College has authorized to assist the Financial Aid Office in administering the loan program. As part of our Default Prevention strategies, you may be contacted by these Third Party agencies which includes ECMC.

Direct Loan Deferment Forms

For information about deferments and forebearances, please click this link, Deferment.

If you need additional information, please contact the Financial Aid Office.

Loan Servicers

Visit My Federal Student Aid to view information about all of the federal student loans you have received and to find contact information for the loan servicer or lender for your loans.

For contact information for the various loan servicers for federal loans made through the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program and the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program, please click this link, Loan Servicers.

This page was last updated on September 15, 2017.