Entrance & Exit Counseling
Federal Direct Loan counseling is required by the federal government for all federal student loan programs, including both the subsidized and/or unsubsidized Federal Direct Stafford, and Graduate Federal Direct PLUS loans. SAIC does not release official academic transcripts and diplomas until students complete any outstanding Loan Exit Counseling requirements.
There are two types of loan counseling: Entrance Counseling and Exit Counseling. Each will help you learn about the federal loans that you are borrowing, including repayment terms and other important details you need to know to successfully manage your debt. Information on the Federal Student Aid Ombudsman is provided to assist with any repayment solutions to discrepancies in loan balances and payments or issues with servicer quality by the holder of your loans.
Online Entrance Counseling
Entrance counseling helps students understand the rights and responsibilities of their loans before they incur loan debt. This counseling covers:
- The importance of repayment
- The consequences of default
- The use of the Master Promissory Note
- Examples of sample monthly repayment amounts
Note: SAIC cannot credit a student's account with loan proceeds until after the online entrance loan counseling is complete.
Federal Direct Plus, Subsidized and Unsubsidized Student Loans
Students borrowing Federal Direct Student Loans who have not previously received a Federal Direct Student Loan (at SAIC or any other school) must complete online entrance counseling before SAIC can make the first disbursement of the loan.
Entrance loan counseling for direct loans is only needed once when the student first borrows a Federal Direct Stafford (subsidized and/or unsubsidized) or a Grad Federal Direct PLUS loan. To complete entrance counseling for Federal Direct Loans, students must log on to StudentAid.gov with their FSA ID and click on the link named "Complete Counseling." Entrance Counseling is in the form of an online session that the student (the borrower) must read and answer several questions.
Online Exit Counseling
Exit Counseling helps students to understand their rights and responsibilities as a student loan borrower, and also provides useful tips and repayment information to help students manage their loans. Students who need to complete Exit Loan Counseling are notified by the SAIC Student Financial Services office.
Exit Counseling includes:
- Information about the importance of loan repayment
- Loan repayment options
- Deferment and forbearance
- Loan forgiveness and cancellation
Student Loan Repayment Checklist for Graduates
About to graduate from SAIC? Check out these helpful tips for student loan repayment.
Federal Student Aid Ombudsman
If a student enters repayment and has a problem with his/her federal loan and other reasonable efforts have failed, we recommend that the student contacts the Federal Student Aid Ombudsman. The Ombudsman office managed by the U.S. Department of Education may be able to:
- Propose solutions to discrepancies in loan balances and payments
- Clarify interest and collection charges
- Clarify financial aid requirements
- Find loan holders
- Rehabilitate loans by establishing satisfactory repayment plans
- Reestablish eligibility for Federal Aid
- Find promissory notes
- Defer or discharge loans
- Resolve issues related to income tax refund offsets, default status, consolidations, or bankruptcies
- Service quality, and any other customer concerns
Students can contact the U.S. Department of Education's Ombudsman at:
Office of Ombudsman
Student Financial Assistance
Room 3012, ROB #3
7th & D Streets, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202