Federal Direct Loans

Rice University continues to work diligently to lower student indebtedness. Loan funding is available to assist students and parents with meeting their educational expenses. Please review the information below regarding the different types of federal loans offered at Rice University.

Direct loans require applicants to have a citizenship status of either U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident. Students must complete the Free application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and be enrolled at least half time for funds to disburse to the student's account. For undergraduates, this means enrolling in at least six (6) credit hours. Graduate students must enroll in a minimum of four and one-half (4.5) credit hours. All loans are disbursed into two equal parts, unless you specifically request one semester only. The lender for these loans is the U.S. Department of Education. On July 1, borrowers will be able to view interest rates for the new academic year. Please visit the U.S. Department of Education for additional detailed information.

Direct Loan Limits, Interest Rates, and Origination Fees

The Direct Loan Program includes:

The Direct Subsidized Loan: A need-based loan with a fixed interest rate. The government pays the interest subsidy while the student is enrolled at least half time. Repayment begins after the six-month grace period when the student graduates, withdraws or drops below half-time enrollment.

The Direct Unsubsidized Loan: A non-need based loan with a fixed interest rate. Repayment begins after the six-month grace period when the student graduates, withdraws or drops below half-time enrollment.

The Direct PLUS Loan for Graduate Students: A credit-based, fixed rate loan that enables graduate or professional students to borrow funds to meet their educational expenses. For more information, please visit Direct PLUS Loans.

The Direct PLUS Loan for Parents: A credit-based, fixed rate loan that parents of undergraduate students can borrow on the student’s behalf to meet educational expenses. For more information, please visit Direct PLUS Loans.

Once awarded a Subsidized and/or Unsubsidized loan(s):

Log into your Esther account to accept your loan offer. You may accept, reduce or decline your loan.

In order to complete the loan process, Complete Entrance Counseling and Master Promissory Note (MPN).

You have the option to reduce or cancel your loan prior to disbursement or within 14 days after the funds have disbursed. If there is no loan award offered, please email fina@rice.edu to submit your request.

Contact Us

Office of Financial Aid
P.O. Box 1892
Houston, TX 77251-1892
713-348-4958 office
713-348-2139 fax
fina@rice.edu