Private (Alternative) Student Loans

Hawkeye understands that in exceptional cases, families need to pursue alternative loans to help bridge the gap between the actual cost of your education and your financial aid package offered by Hawkeye.

Alternative private student loans are available through private lenders and require a separate loan application.

Please note:

  • Private loans are offered by banks and lending institutions. They are not guaranteed by the federal government.

  • Private loans tend to cost more than the loans offered by the federal government.

  • Interest rates and origination fees vary by lender.

  • Approval of an alternative loan is contingent upon credit approval by the individual lenders and your debt-to-income ratio.

  • Most traditional age students will be required to secure a co-signer. Many lenders have informative websites and we encourage you to visit each lender's site.

  • Private loans cannot be consolidated with federal loans. You will make separate payments to Federal Stafford Loans and the private lender of your choice.

  • Hawkeye reserves the right to limit borrowing.

  • If you are enrolled in a program with required tools or equipment expenses exceeding $500 per semester and you would like aid to help cover these expenses, please complete a Cost of Attendance Appeal form and attach documentation to show that the materials are required and the cost. Once we review your submitted form, we will consider your request to increase your borrowing limit.

Apply for a Private Student Loan

We want to be sure that you are educated regarding the differences between federal loans and private loans and the future effects of borrowing either type of loan.

Before You Apply for a Private Student Loan

We recommend you:

  1. apply for scholarship opportunities.

  2. apply for federal and state financial aid by completing a FAFSA.

  3. apply for a Federal Stafford Parent PLUS Loan.

  4. read through our recommended questions to ask before considering a private loan.

  5. read through our comparison chart comparing Parent PLUS Loans vs. Private Student Loans.

For most private loans you need to be enrolled and attending at least six credit hours to be eligible.

How do I apply?

You can contact the lender directly. Depending on the loan program, lenders offer borrowers various ways to apply for a private loan. Many lenders offer you a pre-approval process so you can determine your eligibility for a private loan.

You must verify that the lender of your choosing disburses to two-year institutions.

It may take up to four weeks to process a private loan. Early application is important.

How much can I borrow?

The actual amount varies according to each student's financial circumstance. Other variables include the cost of attendance, financial aid resources, and loan limits imposed by the lender.

Loan disbursement

Before a private loan is certified for disbursement by our office, and any of your Federal aid can be disbursed, you are required to complete a “Good Choices” packet. This packet of information contains exercises that will help you estimate how much student loan debt you may accumulate during your college years, projecting expenses and financial resources while attending Hawkeye each academic year, and distinguishing “wants” from “needs” in an attempt to keep borrowing to a minimum.

Hawkeye Community College:

  • will certify a loan from whatever lender you determine best meets your needs.

  • is required by federal statute to comply with individual lender terms and cannot certify a loan for more than your eligibility as determined by the student cost of attendance minus any other available financial aid.

  • does not participate in revenue-sharing practices, referral fee arrangements, or private loan application fee payments. Please review our Institutional Code of Conduct for Educational Loans.

Your private loan funds will be disbursed by the Business Office once per term beginning no earlier than the financial aid disbursement date.

Where can I go to get a private student loan?

Private loans are offered by a wide variety of lenders. Each lender offers different programs with varying terms. Most lenders have informative websites and we encourage you to visit each lender's site.

Hawkeye Community College does not imply endorsement of any loan products. We recommend that you use our guidelines for evaluating and comparing private alternative loan programs before you choose a lender.

You have the right to choose any lender.

If you have had a private loan in the past, we recommend you stay with the same lender.

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