Private (Alternative) Loans

SB 1289 Disclosure: What do I need to know before applying for a loan?

Students considering student loans need to be aware of the differences between federal student loans and private student loans:
Federal student loans are required by law to provide a range of flexible repayment options including, but not limited to, income-based and income-contingent repayment plans, as well as loan forgiveness benefits that private lenders are not required to provide.

Federal direct loans are available to most students regardless of income. Other qualification criteria do apply. For more information, please visit

Private student loan lenders can offer variable interest rates that can increase or decrease over time, depending on market conditions.

The interest rate on a private loan may depend on the borrower’s and/or co-signer’s credit rating.

Private student loans have a range of interest rates and fees and students should determine the interest rate of, and any fees associated with, the private student loan included in their financial aid award package before accepting the loan. Students should contact the lender of the private student loan or their university campus’ financial aid office if they have any questions about a private student loan.

Private Loan Lenders

ELM Select

ELM Select is a private student loan lender comparison tool to assist borrowers in finding a lender with the most favorable terms and conditions that meets their needs. Vanguard University will certify a private loan with any lender that offers private student loans. If your lender or credit union does not appear in ELM Select, please contact the Financial Aid Office.