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Loan Programs

Graduate education is an investment that can catapult your career, professional development, and earning potential. Most students use one or more loan options to finance the MSHC experience.

U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents

Federal Loans are available at Federal loans offer fixed rates, low fees, and funds are disbursed directly to your student account.

Students may borrow up to the full cost of attendance which includes tuition plus living expenses. Students working through the program seldom borrow living expenses as this reduces overall debt. However, borrowing for living expenses is an option.

Your Financial Aid Award Notice

Once an admitted student activates their Net ID, the Evanston Office of Graduate Financial Aid will send an email award notice to the Northwestern University email address. This should happen approximately two weeks after the FAFSA is received. Note: A student must complete a FAFSA before notification can happen.

Student loans can always be adjusted, reduced, or canceled by contacting the Evanston Office of Graduate Financial Aid.

Review your additional To Do List requirements in CAESAR (the university’s online system for students).

Loan Disbursements

At the start of each quarter, student loan funds are disbursed to Northwestern.

If you borrowed loans in excess of your tuition charges for cost of living (housing, books, transportation, etc.), you can set up direct deposit to receive your financial aid refund. You must request a refund each quarter, if eligible. Students must sign up for direct deposit and request a refund in CAESAR; see instructions below. Refunds take up to two business days to deposit into a student’s checking account.

To set up direct deposit in CAESAR, navigate as follows: to My Account > Set Up Direct Deposit.

To request a refund in CAESAR, navigate as follows: My Account > Request a Refund.

You can also download the Financial Aid Document External link  and visit the Evanston Office of Graduate Financial Aid External link  website for additional details about general financial aid and loan options.

Visit the Evanston Office of Graduate Financial Aid website  for additional details about general financial aid and loan options.

Private Loans

Private Loans are available through a variety of traditional lenders such as banks and credit unions. Private loan interest rates may vary, your credit score can impact the favorability of your rate, and you may need a cosigner.

International Students

International students are ineligible for U.S. sponsored federal loans. is an excellent source of information regarding private student loans. Not all lenders offer loan programs for international students. Often lenders require a creditworthy cosigner who is a citizen or Permanent Resident of the United States.

Information on other funding options for international students:

Note: The Program reserves the right to make changes affecting the policies, fees, curricula or any other matters referenced on this site.