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Federal Perkins Loan

A fixed loan interest (5%) loan for students with exceptional financial need. The amount of the Federal Perkins loan is determined by the financial aid office. This is a campus-based loan program, with the school acting as lender using a limited pool of funds provided by the federal government. This loan does not have an origination fee.

Qualification Requirements

  • At least half-time enrollment in a degree program
  • U.S. citizenship, permanency residency, or eligible non-citizen status
  • Satisfactory academic progress
  • No unresolved defaults or overpayments owed on Title IV educational loans and grants
  • Satisfaction of all Selective Service requirements

To apply for this loan program, you must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Entrance Counseling

Before receiving a Perkins loan, borrowers must complete an entrance counseling session. The counseling session reviews basic facts about student loans:

  • Loan terms and conditions
  • Rights and responsibilities of the borrower
  • Use of the Master Promissory Note
  • Repayment and consolidation plans
  • Deferment, forbearance, and cancellation options
  • Late payment and default consequences
  • Importance of keeping lender(s) informed

Entrance counseling for the Federal Perkins loan is administered by the Financial Aid Office.

Exit Counseling

Federal regulations require that institutions offer exit counseling to federal student loan borrowers who are graduating, withdrawing from the college, or dropping below half-time enrollment. Exit counseling covers:

  • Borrower's rights and responsibilities
  • Loan repayment
  • Consequences of default

During exit counseling, borrowers are also required to provide updated personal information, such as address, telephone number, and employment.

Schools must keep documentation that shows that the borrower received the required exit counseling, either electronically, in person or by mail.

If a borrower withdraws from school without the school's knowledge, or if a borrower fails to attend a scheduled exit counseling session, the school must mail written exit counseling materials to the borrower at his or her last known address.

To complete exit interview for the Federal Perkins Loan, please schedule an appointment with the Assistant Director of Student Account Services by calling (410) 225-2356.

NOTE: There will be a hold on all educational records (i.e. diploma, transcript, etc) until then exit interview is complete.


The Federal Perkins loan program has a nine month grace period so that borrowers begin repayment in the tenth month upon graduating, falling below half time status, or withdrawing from their college or university. The federal government does not charge interest on the Federal Perkins loan while borrowers maintain an enrollment status of half-time, during the nine month grace period or during authorized periods of deferment.

Deferment or Forbearance

Under certain conditions, borrowers can receive a deferment or forbearance on their loan. During a deferment, borrowers are allowed to temporarily postpone payments on their loan, and no interest accrues.

Deferments are not automatic. Borrowers must apply for one through their school by using a deferment request form. Borrowers must file their deferment request on time or they will pay a late charge.

If borrowers are temporarily unable to meet their repayment schedule but are not eligible for a deferment, they can receive forbearance for a limited and specific period. During forbearance, payments are postponed or reduced. Interest continues to accrue; borrowers are responsible for it.

Forbearance isn't automatic either. Borrowers may be granted forbearance in up to 12 month intervals for up to three years. Borrowers must apply for forbearance through the school or through the agency the school employs to service their loan. Borrowers must continue making scheduled payments until they are notified that deferment or forbearance has been granted.


A loan can qualify for cancellation under certain conditions-as long as the borrower is not in default.

If the borrower serves as an enlisted person in certain specialties of the Armed Forces, the U.S. Department of Defense might, as enlistment incentive, repay a portion of their student loan. Note that this is not a cancellation. The borrower should contact their recruiting officer to check for qualification.

If the borrower has any questions about the terms of their Federal Perkins Loan(s), repayment obligations, deferment, forbearance, or cancellation, they will need to check with the school. Only the school may grant deferment, forbearance, or cancellation, or make other decisions concerning their loan.


If the borrower is graduating and entering repayment on their Federal Perkins Loan(s), or if the borrower has already entered into repayment, a Consolidation Loan can help ease the burden of loan payments. Loan consolidation provides many positive benefits such as low fixes interest rates, a longer repayment period, and a single monthly payment to one lender. These benefits often allow recent graduates to begin paying off their loans without placing an undo burden on their entry into the job market. However, depending on the borrower's specific circumstances, a consolidation loan may or may not be right for them.


Serious delinquent Federal Perkins loans may be rehabilitated. After 12 consecutive monthly payments, the account is considered current and reported to the credit bureaus and National Student Loan Database (NSLDS) as such. MICA will determine the amount to be paid during the rehabilitation. The borrower may rehabilitate the account only once. If the borrower defaults on the loan again after a successful rehabilitation the borrower cannot receive the benefit again.

For more information, please contact (410) 225-2356 and ask to speak to the Assistant Director of Student Account Services.