Graduate School Loans for Working Professionals

Ok, you finally got your degree and you have entered the workforce but now you realize that in order to get where you really desire to be you will need graduate school. Chances are you have just started working and you are currently attempting to pay for your undergraduate loans, so you are wondering how you get a graduate school loan if you are a working professional.

While graduate school is a significant investment for anyone there are ways that you can get assistance.

Federal Student loans - These are often the lowest cost way to borrow. Graduate school Federal loans are guaranteed by the U.S. government under the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP). This program uses private sector capital that has been extended by banks and loan organizations to help students and parents pay for both undergraduate and graduate education. This private sector capitol is guaranteed by EdFund, a nonprofit public benefit corporation and state agencies.

There are two primary styles of Federal students loans designed for the working professional seeking to attend graduate school.

Stafford Loans - These loans are fixed rate student loans that are made to graduate students who are attending college at least half time. Stafford loans have a graduate school or lifetime professional limit of $138,500 and may be subsidized up to $65,000. These loans are actually designed to assist the working professional in completing graduate school. These are the most common of federal student loans and provide one of the cheapest ways to pay for graduate school.

While in Graduate school you will be responsible for the interest that accrues on the unsubsidized portion of your Stafford loan but you are not obligated to pay these costs until after graduation. These costs get added to the cost of the loan and become due after a 6 month grace period from the time of completion or separation from graduate school.

Another way to pay for Graduate school is with a Federal Graduate PLUS loan. Graduate PLUS loans are federally sponsored loans for students attending graduate school. With a Grad PLUS loan, you may borrow up to the full cost of your education, less other financial aid received including Federal Stafford loans.

A Federal Graduate PLUS loan is intended to supplement your Stafford loan, and the repayment of both may be grouped together into one repayment program.

It used to be that PLUS loans stood for "Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students" but the guidelines of these loans have been revised and these loans now are available as graduate school loans as well.

Both of these loan types are tailored for the working professional and are available for students attending graduate school at least part-time. Also repayment is not due as long as the working professional is attending graduate school on a part-time basis.

Private loans - Along with these Federal loan programs many loan institutions provide private student loans with reasonable interest rates and repayment programs.

So do not worry that you are now in a situation where you cannot afford to go to Graduate School and work. Remember that these programs are designed with you, the working professional in mind.

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