Alternative Loans

Alternative Loans

Also known as private loans, alternative student loans are offered by banks or lending institutions to help students and parents bridge the gap between the cost of education and financial aid already received. These loans are not guaranteed by the federal government. Alternative loans:

  • have fixed or variable interest rates
  • accrue interest while you are enrolled in school
  • may require repayment while you are still in college
  • credit-based
  • usually require a co-signer

Choosing a lender

Calvin does not endorse any particular alternative loan program. However, we do provide this lender list as a starting point for you and your family to begin researching alternative loan options. These loans have been used by Calvin students and have distinct features.   

The lender list was developed by Calvin College financial aid professionals. Lenders are reviewed on an annual basis and are asked to provide Calvin College with up-to-date information regarding benefits and services. The Calvin College financial aid office adheres to the code of conduct as established by the Higher Education Opportunity Act.

Due to federal regulations, Calvin College is required to disclose why a lender was chosen for the Preferred Lender List. We must also disclose any affiliations between the selected lenders. See this disclosure »

Most alternative loans require a co-signer (parent, grandparent, or legal guardian with established credit history) to reduce interest rates and fees and save money over the life of the loan.

You are not required to choose a loan from the preferred lenders list. If you find an alternative loan that better serves your specific needs, you  may apply for that loan and Calvin will process the paperwork according to the standards set by the code of conduct.