Financial Aid : Federal Work-Study and Loan Programs

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Federal Work-Study Program (FWS)

The College receives federal funds to provide on campus and off campus employment opportunities to a limited number of students with demonstrated need that are enrolled in at least six (6) credits and are in good academic standing. Every attempt is made to place students in jobs that match their academic majors, skills or past experiences, and/or desired areas of employment. Students may work up to 20 hours per week while classes are in session and 30 hours per week when classes are not in session, but may never exceed 8 hours per day. Students work at $8.00 per hour and payment is made by the Human Resources office of the College on a bi-weekly basis. Students are hired on a rolling basis. FWS is awarded until funds are exhausted. Students interested in FWS must complete the Thomas Nelson Community College Federal Work-Study Application. Students who are hired in FWS positions are required to complete a background check administered by our Human Resource Department.

Federal Direct Loan Program (FDLP)

The Federal Direct Loan Program (FDLP) provides eligible students with loans for the freshman and sophomore year. Loans made under the Federal Direct Loan Program are low-interest, long-term loans. A student must be enrolled for at least six (6) credits and be in good academic standing.

Students with financial need can obtain a subsidized Stafford Loan. This means the U.S. Department of Education will pay the interest charges on your behalf as long as you remain enrolled on at least a half-time basis (6 or more credits) and during a six-month period following enrollment (grace period). At the end of the grace period, repayment of the loan must begin and interest begins to accrue to the student borrower. Repayment may extend up to ten (10) years but borrowers must make payments of at least $50 per month. Students who do not qualify for the need-based (subsidized) Stafford Loan can obtain an unsubsidized non-need-based loan. Unlike the subsidized loan, the student is responsible for the interest obligation while enrolled. The student, while enrolled on at least a half-time basis (6 or more credits), may pay interest only or have the interest capitalized (added to the principal).

Student Loan Borrowers must complete a Master Promissory Note, an Entrance Loan Counseling session with each loan and an Exit Loan Counseling session upon graduation or withdrawal. Repayment begins six (6) months after a student leaves school because of graduation, other reasons, or drops below half-time level. All loan applicants must have completed a FAFSA and may not have defaulted on prior loans or have excessive existing student loan debt. Students may not borrow more than the cost of their education minus expected family contribution (EFC) and other financial aid awarded them. The Financial Aid office must approve all federal loans and reserves the right to refuse loan applications due to academic deficiency or evidence that a student may have difficulty managing loan debt.

The Federal Direct Student Loan Application Process

Beginning with the 2010 summer semester, Thomas Nelson Community College (TNCC) will participate exclusively in the Federal Direct Loan Program which includes Subsidized Student Loans, Unsubsidized Student Loans and Parent Loans. TNCC previously participated in the Federal Family Educational Loan Program (FFELP) and students were required to choose a private lender. The Federal Government is the lender in the Direct Student Loan Program. Students and parents interested in federal student and parent loans will be required to apply through the Direct Student Loan Program and complete a new master promissory note.

For additional information on the Direct Student Loan Program, please go the following website:

  • General Direct Loan Information
  • Direct Loan Consolidation Information
  • Direct Loan Servicing Information

How to Apply for a Direct Student Loan:

To apply for a Direct Student Loan, students must meet basic eligibility criteria and complete the following steps at this website:

  1. Complete Direct Student Loan Entrance Counseling
  2. Complete a Direct Student Loan Master Promissory Note at and then:
  3. Print a Federal Direct Loan Request Form at and go to “Forms”. Complete the form and submit it to the Financial Aid Office via e-mail, mail, fax or in-person.

Federal Direct PLUS (Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students)

The Federal Direct PLUS Loan program is a non-need-based source of loan funds to the parent(s) of dependent students. Federal Direct PLUS loans may be used in conjunction with the Federal Stafford Loans. Each year, parents of dependent students may borrow an amount equal to the cost of attendance less any financial aid including any federal loans. Repayment begins immediately unless the parent borrower is enrolled in college on at least a half-time basis. The interest rate is a variable rate. The PLUS loan is only available to parents. Guardians are ineligible. A credit check is performed on all parental borrowers and pre-approval is required.

How to Apply for a Direct PLUS (Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students)

To apply for a Direct Parent Student Loan, students must meet basic eligibility criteria, and parents must complete the following steps:

  1. Complete the Direct Parent Loan Promissory Note at and then:
  2. Print a Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan Request Form at and go to “Forms”. Complete the form and submit it to the Financial Aid Office via e-mail, mail, fax or in-person.