Financial Aid matters: student loans

Technews Writer
Sun Oct 02, 2011
By this time in the semester, your classes are in full swing, your bill is paid and your student organizations are gearing up for a great term! At this point, the Office of Financial Aid would like to encourage you to take the time to do a quick loan check-in. If you have taken any student loans during your time at IIT or while at other institutions, a loan check-in is a great way to determine your total outstanding loan debt and plan for repayment after graduation.
It can be daunting to consider loan repayment, especially when you are obtaining a world-class but expensive education at a place like IIT. The first step is to get organized. Creating a spreadsheet or chart of your loans from each academic year can be very helpful. In this spreadsheet, information such as the year, loan amount, lender or servicer and interest rate can help you figure out what the balance of the loan will be after graduation and who you will be repaying.
Once you have made the skeleton of the spreadsheet, you will have to fill in the information. A great place to obtain this is with the National Student Loan Data System ( This website compiles all federal student loans taken during your time in school. This website does not include information about private student loans. If you have taken private loans, you can look on the portal to find out the amount of the loan in your financial aid summary on the Finances tab. Additionally, your lenders should have sent you disclosure information when the loan was disbursed so you can refer to that for information as well. If your time at IIT dates back prior to the start of the 2007-2008 academic year and you took private loans, you may have a hard time finding the information on the portal. If you are in that situation, you can contact our office to talk with a financial aid counselor about your loan history.
Finally, once you’ve gotten organized, stay that way! Each semester make sure your records are up-to-date as additional loans disburse. Also, keep an eye on NSLDS to make sure your federal loans are being reported correctly. Remember to keep all loan statements (paper or electronic) as you receive them from your lenders because they may contain information you’ll need once repayment gets closer. Lastly, watch the federal regulations as they continue to change each year. New regulations can have a big impact on loan interest rates, subsidies and lifetime limits available to students.
If you have questions or concerns about your student loans, please contact us at 312-567-7219 or [email protected]