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US Federal Aid

Federal loans for US undergraduate and postgraduate students

St Mary’s University, Twickenham participates in the William D Ford Federal Direct Loan Program. Federal Direct Loans are low-interest loans to help undergraduate and graduate students pay for their education.

Before applying for your loan, please read the following information carefully. You will need to fill in all of the details online and then send the completed forms to St Marys via our Federal Aid Documents form

Complete the Funding Declaration Form 

Submit Federal Aid Documents

There are no short cuts to loan origination. The steps you need to take are quick and easy, but as we are a foreign school we are not automatically sent the documents; please do not rely on this. Your loan will not be processed unless you contact us directly with all of the relevant documentation. Failure to do so may result in a delay in your loan being disbursed.

As a student studying at a foreign institution, you are eligible for a Direct Subsidised and a Direct Unsubsidised loan, as well as a Direct PLUS loan.

For more information on these loans, including the maximum amount you can borrow and related interest rates please check the Federal Student Aid website.

There are a number of things you must consider if deciding to study at a foreign school that affect the loans and grants you can receive.

The application process

You may complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) before that date, but please wait until you have completed everything you need, before you send the documents to us in one single email. We will not be able to originate your loan until we have all the necessary elements.

Please read the information carefully but do not send any documents until you have everything available in one separate email.

St Mary's school code: G41437

The loan application flowchart provides a summary of the steps involved in applying for federal loans. The application process involves filling out the forms detailed below, every year of your studies:

  1. Completed FAFSA form (your loan eligibility will be assessed in the first instance by checking if you meet all of the criteria)
  2. Cost of Attendance
  3. Master Promissory Note (separate ones for both unsub/sub and Plus)
  4. Entrance Counselling (first year only)
  5. Credit Check for Plus loan if applicable

The CARES Act was passed by congress allowing students in receipt of Federal Aid to maintain their loan eligibility throughout the pandemic. This legislation permits US Federal Aid students enrolled on full-time in-person courses to receive their loan and study virtually.

The provision only applies to programmes which are normally delivered on-campus and cannot be extended to Distance Learning programmes.

 All students taking advantage of this provision will be required to study on campus at the end of the qualifying emergency as declared by the UK Government.

To be eligible for US Direct Loans you must satisfy the following conditions:

  1. Receive an offer of admission for an eligible programme. Ineligible courses include:
    • All Distance Learning Courses
    • Undergraduate Degrees which include a year abroad/Erasmus programme
    • Courses including Internships or Placements
    • Non-degree programmes (including: Graduate Diplomas, Postgraduate Certificates in Education)
  2. Be enrolled and continue to be enrolled at least half-time. Part-time study is not permitted.
  3. Be a US Citizen or an Eligible non-citizen
  4. Possess a valid US Social Security Number
  5. Continuing students must display Satisfactory Academic Progress
  6. All applicants must not have exceeded their aggregate loan limits
  • Consumer Disclosure
  • Satisfactory Academic Progress form
  • Satisfactory Academic Progress policy
  • Return of funds Policy
  • St Mary’s University Cancellation Policy
  • Loan application flowchart

*Please note: the exchange rate shown is for illustration only and is set once a year for the cost of attendance. The actual exchange rate used when processing disbursements will be dependent on the market rate on the day the funds are processed.

Once your FAFSA application has been processed you will be emailed a copy of your Student Aid Report (SAR). Please review this information carefully and ensure that it includes an Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) and the details of any previous loans.

Things to look out for in your Student Aid Report:

  • Any missing information or comments stating further information is required; you'll need to make corrections and re-submit your application.
  • If there is a "C" next to your EFC data, further information will be required; check the comment codes and make any necessary corrections.
  • In some cases we may need to ask you to provide documentary evidence, for example we may ask you for proof of US citizenship.

Loan repayment

Information on repaying your student loans can be found on the Student Aid website.

For US Federal Aid, St Mary’s University deems you ‘graduated’ once you stop attending full-time study. Therefore, you will be registered as a ‘graduated student’ and your loans will enter into repayment when you finish attending full-time classes.

Satisfactory academic progress

You will have to maintain satisfactory academic progress (SAP) and remain in at least half-time study throughout the course of your programme to remain eligible for federal loans. The University will check your progress twice a year, before each disbursement, through the completion of a Satisfactory Academic Progress form. Please make sure to check the St Mary's SAP Policy.

Change in student status

If you withdraw, graduate or drop below half-time study you will no longer be eligible for further federal loans at St Mary's University. This will mean that your federal loans will enter into repayment and any remaining disbursements will have to be cancelled (if applicable). You may need to return a portion of your unearned loan.

Exit counselling

If you withdraw, graduate or drop below half-time study you will need to complete exit counselling, which can be found on the Student Loans website.

Origination fees for loans disbursed between 1st October 2020 and 1st October 2021

  • Direct Stafford loan (sub/ unsub): 1.057%
  • Direct Parent Plus: 4.228%
  • Direct Graduate Plus: 4.228%
  • Disbursement one: 11th October 2021
  • Disbursement two: 14th February 2022
  • Disbursement three: 6th June 2022

The disbursement date is not the date that you will have access to your loan. The disbursement date is the day that the loan will be added to your student ledger to cover the costs for tuition and where appropriate accommodation. If there is a cash excess/ refund, this will be paid to you 10 days after the disbursement date.

Please note: You must ensure that you have enough funds to cover your expenses for the first 4-6 weeks of the semester before your loan is paid to you. You must be fully registered and present on campus before your loans can be drawn down. If you late are in arriving and/or completing your registration, your loan will be delayed. Please bear this in mind.


The information provided on this webpage is accurate to the best of our knowledge. However, US Department of Education regulations are subject to change and St Mary’s University cannot be held responsible for any changes that may adversely affect your eligibility for federal loans.

This section also contains important consumer information for US students, that we are required to disclose.