Scholarships and loans

Loans for students from the USA

Sources of Funding

The University of Kent administers US Federal Direct loans, US Private loans and US Veterans Educational Benefits (or GI Bill) for students from the United States.

William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program

The University of Kent participates in the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program.

Direct Loans are low-interest loans for students and parents to help pay for the cost of a student's education after high school. The lender is the US Department of Education, although the entity you deal with - your loan servicer, can be a private business.

With Direct Loans, you:

  • borrow directly from the US Federal government and have a single contact - your loan servicer - for everything related to repayment, even if you receive Direct Loans at different schools;
  • have online access to your Direct Loan account information via your servicer's website;
  • can choose from several repayment plans that are designed to meet the needs of almost any borrower, and you can switch repayment plans if your needs change.

The University is authorised to process US Direct loans for students who are:

  1. Citizens or permanent residents of the United States (US) and who have a valid US social security number. 
  2. Studying for Bachelor's degrees, First Professional degrees, Masters degrees and Doctoral degrees.
  3. Studying at the University of Kent’s Canterbury, Medway, Brussels and Rome campuses and centres.

 

However, there are some exceptions.  The following students are not eligible to borrow US Direct loans:

  • Students whose programme includes study or research for any length of time in the United States. However, there is a narrow exception for independent research carried out by PhD students – please email foreignloans@kent.ac.uk for details.  
  • Students whose programme includes study or research for any length of time at the University of Kent’s Paris or Athens centres. 
  • Students who have a study period abroad at an institution which is not certified to receive US Federal Direct funds.  If you are planning to have a study period abroad and want to borrow a US Direct loan, please contact the Foreign Loans Unit at foreignloans@kent.ac.uk to ensure that you select an eligible overseas institution.
  • Students who are registered on the International Foundation Programme.
  • Students who are registered on an External / Distance Learning programme of study.

These students may be eligible to borrow a US Private loan.

Consolidation

If you have multiple Federal education loans, you can consolidate them into a single Direct Consolidation Loan. This may simplify repayment if you are currently making separate loan payments to different loan holders, as you will only have one monthly payment to make.

However, there may be trade-offs, so you will want to learn about the advantages and possible disadvantages of consolidation before you consolidate. To learn more, visit the Direct Consolidation Loan website

Additional information

For additional information about US Direct Loans:

US Private Loans

As the following students are not eligible to borrow US Direct loans, they can apply to borrow a US Private Loan:

  • Students whose programme includes study or research for any length of time in the United States. However, there is a narrow exception for independent research carried out by PhD students – please email foreignloans@kent.ac.uk for details.  
  • Students whose programme includes study or research for any length of time at the University of Kent’s Paris centre. 
  • Students who have a study period abroad at an institution which is not certified to receive US Federal Direct funds. 
  • Students who are registered on an External / Distance Learning programme of study.

The only US private loan currently available to students attending a university outside the United States is the Smart Option Loan from Sallie Mae.  Information about Smart Option private loans can be found at:  https://www.salliemae.com/ .

US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Education Benefits

Veterans Affairs (VA) Education Benefits Administration

The University of Kent has been approved by the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to administer education benefits to eligible students.

US veterans or their dependents who are eligible for Veterans Affairs education benefits (VA benefits) should contact the Foreign Loans Unit at foreignloans@kent.ac.uk as soon as possible if they wish to use funding from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).  Programme approval may be required, which can take several months.

To enable us to process your VA benefits, we will need the following:

  • Full details of your course.  We will then have the course approved by the Department of VA.
  • Your full name and current US address.
  • Your date of birth.
  • Your social security number.
  • Chapter number.  This can be obtained from the Department of VA.
  • Copy of your Certificate of Eligibility letter.  This can be scanned and a pdf copy sent via email.

 

Veterans can contact their local Veterans Administration (VA) or the Veterans Benefits Administration in Washington DC for more information on educational assistance.

Students in receipt of VA benefits can also borrow US Federal Direct Loans.

Other useful links:

GI Bill page on Veterans Benefits Administration website

Regional VA Benefit Offices

 

 

 

Scholarships Unit - © University of Kent

The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T: +44 (0)1227 764000

Last Updated: 13/09/2017