Federal Direct Student Loans are low interest loans to help you pay for the cost of your education. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education rather than a bank or other financial institution. Direct Loans are a form of financial aid and must be repaid with interest.

A student loan is a serious long-term obligation that should be used only as a last resort. If it is necessary for you to apply for a student loan, you must complete all required steps for processing of the Direct Loan.

Borrowing Student Loans

Types of Direct Loans

Direct Subsidized Loan

A subsidized loan is for students who demonstrate a financial need which is determined by federal regulations. These loans charge no interest while you are in school as at least a half-time student (taking 6 units), during your grace period, and during your deferment periods Interest begins to accrue once you enter repayment.

Direct Unsubsidized Loan

Direct Unsubsidized loans are not based on financial need. The interest begins to accrue after your first disbursement. Interest is charged during all time periods including the time you are at school and during grace periods and deferment periods.

Loan Amounts

The Direct Loan amount you request may not be the amount you are eligible to receive. PCC determines your amount of eligibility based on the Admissions and Records grade level at the time of certification. We also determine the maximum amount of eligibility based on other factors such as your current student cost of attendance budget and financial aid awards.

Direct Loan Eligibility Requirements 

Requirements and criteria needed for a student loan:

  1. All loan requests must be filled out completely and are reviewed on a case by case basis.

  2. You must be enrolled in at least 6 degree applicable credit hours. If you drop below 6 units this will result in the cancellation of all loan funds and/or return of any remaining funds. You will also be required to complete the Exit Counseling at Student Loans.gov.

  3. You must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) and have a  status of Good or Warning for terms applying for loans and have a 2.0 Cumulative GPA at the time of Disbursement.  

  4. Having an Appeal approved does not mean that your loan request will be automatically approved.

  5. As part of our default prevention plan, as a student loan applicants you must have met with an academic counselor to obtain your Comprehensive Educational Plan and ensure academic goals and progress.

  6. All documents must be submitted to the Office of Financial Aid by the loan application deadlines.

  7. The total financial aid awards, including loans, cannot exceed a student’s cost of attendance. Loan amounts may be adjusted to accommodate new awards such as grants, scholarships or other types of resources.

  8. You must complete an Electronic Master Promissory Note (E-MPN) online at Student Loans.gov.

  9. As part of our default prevention plan, all student loan applicants must complete the on-line Entrance Counseling session.

First Time Borrowers vs. Returning Borrowers at PCC

You are a first-year borrower if you are a student with less than 30 completed units at PCC. As a First time borrower at PCC, you will also have your first disbursement of loan funds delayed for 30 days per federal regulations. You are a second-year borrower if you are a student with at least 30 or more completed units. Both types of borrowers must complete the online Direct Loan Entrance Counseling , which will explain the terms and conditions of the loan and provide information about the various Direct Loan repayment options. 


Loan funds are issued once per term during the loan period, but not more than ten days before the term begins. If you are a first-time borrower, you will have your funds held until you have passed the 30th day of enrollment. For loans that are one semester only, the loan proceeds will be disbursed twice in the semester. The first disbursement will come at the beginning of the semester and the second disbursement will occur at the mid-point of the semester.

Loan Repayment

Repayment of your loan will begin six months after you graduate, withdraw, or drop below half-time. Avoid defaulting on your student loans at all costs. If you run into financial problems with your repayment schedule, contact the Direct Loan Servicing Center at 1-800-848-0979. There may be solutions that can keep you on track and protect your credit rating.

For tips on managing loan debt visit the Direct Loan Servicing Center and Cash Course for financial literacy information.

We’ve teamed up with Solutions at ECMC to answer all of your student loan repayment questions. Solutions is a service of the non-profit organization ECMC and is dedicated to helping students manage educational loans. Their resources are available to you free of charge. To contact a Solutions Student Loan Repayment Advisor, email or web chat, or call them at 1-877-331-3262.

Apply for a Direct Loan

Ready to apply for a Direct Loan. You must first complete the FAFSA. From there, complete the following steps to process your loan.

 1  Please contact the Office of Financial Aid to obtain information on the loan process at 1(855)GO-TO-PCC or email gotopcc@pasadena.edu. 

 2   Complete the Loan Eligibility Requirements

Loan application and requirement will be posted to LancerPoint once you complete Step 1. You must upload loan request form and all supporting documentation through LancerPoint for review by the loan application deadline(s). 

2023- 2024 Loan Application Deadlines

Late documents WILL NOT be processed.  NO EXCEPTIONS.

  • Fall 2023 Only Loan: Friday, November 17, 2023 by 11:59 pm PST via LancerPoint upload.
  • Spring 2024 Only Loan: Friday, May 10, 2024 by 11:59 pm PST via LancerPoint upload.
  • Fall 2023/Spring 2024: Friday, May 10, 2024 by 11:59 pm PST via LancerPoint upload.                                                                                    *For loans disbursed after 07/01/2023 and before 07/01/2024 interest rate is fixed at 5.50%. 

 3   Submit Your Loan Application & Documents

Upload completed loan application with all supporting documents. 

 4   Check Your LancerPoint

View your LancerPoint account to review your loan award.