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Loan Repayment

When you leave the University of Chicago, you will probably have a number of questions concerning the repayment of your student loans. We are here to help you avoid confusion concerning the loan repayment process. You are strongly encouraged to take some time to learn about your obligations now and familiarize yourself with important requirements. If you need further guidance regarding loan repayment, we suggest you make an appointment with a Loan Officer in Graduate Financial Aid.

Your Repayment Schedule

Each of your lenders will provide you with a repayment schedule for your loans that will specify both when your first payment is due and the amount of your monthly payment. Please read the repayment schedule carefully and be sure you understand it before you sign it. Your lenders will also provide you with a monthly billing statement.

Grace Periods

Under most loan programs, you will be allowed a grace period between the time your registration falls below half time and the time you have to begin repayment. This grace period allows you time to get established in a new job and a new living situation. Interest on all subsidized Federal Stafford Loans will not begin to accrue until the end of the grace period. However, you are responsible for interest on all unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loans from the date of disbursement. Please refer to your promissory note for the grace period length.


If you qualify for deferments, you must contact the lender for a deferment form. You must verify that the deferment form is completed and certified by the appropriate school or agency official and returned to the lender. Always follow up with your lenders to verify that deferments have been received and processed. You may be required to make loan payments until your lender receives the form.

Loan Forgiveness under the Stafford Loan

The Loan Forgiveness Program cancels your obligation to repay all or part of your outstanding principal and interest on Stafford Loans or consolidation loans you used to repay those loans.

You may qualify if you:

  • Teach elementary school or secondary school and are a highly qualified teacher.
  • Teach elementary school and can demonstrate your knowledge and teaching skills in reading, writing, math, and other areas of elementary-level curriculum.
  • Teach secondary school in a subject area relevant to your academic major.
  • You are a full-time elementary or secondary special education teacher or a full-time secondary math or science teacher.

In order to confirm that you meet these qualifications, you must complete a Teacher Loan Forgiveness application approved by the Department of Education, which is available via your lender.

Loan Consolidation

Loan consolidation enables a borrower with multiple loans from different lenders to obtain one loan with one interest rate and repayment schedule. Loan consolidation is intended solely for those who need greater flexibility in repaying their student loans or who seek to increase their monthly disposable income.

The following loan programs can be consolidated:

  • Stafford Loans (subsidized and unsubsidized)
  • Federal GradPLUS Loans
  • Federal PLUS Loans (parent loans made after October 16, 1986)
  • Health Professions Student Loans (HPSL)
  • Consumer Information
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