The Federal Direct PLUS is a loan designed for parents of dependent undergraduate students.

The maximum eligibility amount per academic year is the school’s estimated cost of attendance minus the combined total of all other financial aid.

To be considered for a Parent PLUS loan, the student must file a FAFSA.  Please note that that PLUS loan is credit-based and approval, therefore, is not guaranteed.  Parents of dependent undergraduate students may apply for a Parent PLUS loan by clicking here and logging in with their FSA ID and password.  Please note that the borrower on the application must be the parent; listing the student as the borrower will result in processing delays.  If the parent is approved, they will be instructed to complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN) online and Entrance Loan Counseling for the PLUS Loan (if appealing a denial or using an endorser). If you are denied for a Parent PLUS loan and plan to appeal, please indicate this on your electronic PLUS Loan application.  You will also be required to complete an Online Parent PLUS Acknowledgment as part of the process.

Who qualifies: All credit-worthy parents and stepparents of dependent undergraduate students are able to borrow.  Financial need is not a requirement for the PLUS loan but completing a FAFSA is mandatory for determining eligibility for this loan.

Please note, only parents and stepparents may apply for this loan for the student.

Please note, only dependent students are eligible for their Parents to apply for a PLUS loan.

Borrowing limits: Parents are only eligible to borrow up to the cost of attendance.  We encourage all borrowers to borrow as little as possible in order to cover educational costs.

Interest rate:  The fixed interest rate for loans disbursed after July 1, 2018, is 7.6%.  

Fees:  There is a 4.248% origination fee deducted by the government for loans disbursed after October 1, 2018.  The net amount of your loan will be 95.736% of the amount you originally borrowed.

Disbursement: PLUS loans proceeds are sent directly to the college in two disbursements (generally half the annual amount you borrow each semester).  The funds are sent by electronic funds transfer (EFT).  The Business Office will credit the loan funds to the student's account and any excess will be refunded to either the parent or the student as designated on the Parent PLUS loan application.  If you have further questions regarding refunds, please contact the Student Accounts Office at (828) 771-2062.

Repayment: Repayment of your loan begins immediately after disbursement.  You may be eligible for deferment options which you may discuss with your servicer.  The standard repayment period is 10 years.

*Denied: If a parent applies for a Federal Direct PLUS Loan with the Federal Department of Education and is denied due to credit reasons, we are able to offer an additional amount of Direct Unsubsidized Loan money to the student.  In addition to the denial, the student's FAFSA results must be on file with our office in order to qualify for the additional Direct Unsubsidized Loan funds.

If the credit check results in a denial and the parent will not appeal the decision or acquire a co-signer, the parent will need to notify the Financial Aid Office they will not seek an appeal or a co-signer.  You may forward the "denial" email to to expedite the process.  Once received, the Financial Aid Office will recalculate the Financial Aid Award Letter to include the additional Direct Unsubsidized Loan eligibility.  The student will be emailed that a revised award letter is available on Net Partner and the student must accept the additional amount on Net Partner by accessing the "Accept Awards" tab.

In the case of a PLUS denial, we are able to offer up to an additional $4000 per year in Direct Unsubsidized to Freshmen and Sophomores and up to an additional $5000 in Direct Unsubsidized to Juniors and Seniors.

Appeal or Approved with an Endorser:  If a parent is denied a Parent PLUS loan, the parent may appeal the decision or apply with an endorser.  If approved, the parent must complete PLUS Entrance Counseling at