In This Section:
Federal Direct Loans at Cumberland University
The Federal Direct Loan Program replaces the Federal Stafford and Plus Loan Programs at Cumberland University as of July 1st, 2010, becoming the major source of federal loan funds for students and parents at Cumberland. To be eligible for a Federal Direct Loan, a student must be:
1. A U. S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
2. Enrolled as a matriculated student for at least six (6) credits per semester
3. Determined to be eligible for federal aid after completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
The Student Financial Services office has implemented some new steps to expedite the processing of your Federal Direct Loan. You must have the following on file in order to submit a Direct Loan Application:
1. Valid Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for 2010-2011 (cannot have errors or pending verification status)
2. Completed Entrance Counseling (required for the first time you borrow through Direct Loans at Cumberland)
3. Must be registered for at least 6 credits
4. Completed Master Promissory Note (required for the first time you borrow through Direct Loans at Cumberland)
Before students can receive Federal Direct Loan funds, students at Cumberland University are required to complete the on-line Federal Direct Loan Entrance Counseling, as well as complete a Federal Direct Loan Master Promissory Note. To speed up the loan process, please use your Department of Education issued PIN as an electronic signature on the Master Promissory Note.
The following steps outline the process of requesting a Federal Direct Loan and receiving loan funds at Cumberland University.
The Direct Loan Application Process
STEP 1: FILE A FAFSA
Each student who wishes to apply for a William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan at Cumberland University must first file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). When submitting your FAFSA, please be sure to include Cumberland University (Federal Code #003485) in the list of schools you'd like to receive your FAFSA information.
Please note that some students who file a FAFSA will have their application selected for verification by the U.S. Department of Education. These individuals must provide copies of income documentation and household information to Student Financial Services office, Memorial Hall rm. 103. Some students who file a FAFSA may also have their application selected for review by Cumberland’s Student Financial Services Office if the application information seems incorrect or inconsistent. These individuals must review and correct their application information before they can submit the Direct Loan request.
Step 2: Entrance Counseling Session
First time borrowers who want to apply for a William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan at Cumberland University must complete an Entrance Counseling session.
The entrance counseling requirement for the Federal Direct Loan program needs to be completed just once while in attendance at Cumberland University; therefore, students who borrow in subsequent years need not repeat the entrance counseling requirement.
At Cumberland University, students may complete the entrance counseling requirement online. Students should read all information provided on the entrance counseling web site before proceeding to take the online quiz. The quiz is intended to measure your comprehension of the entrance counseling materials so that you have a clear understanding of the loan and subsequent repayment process.
The Student Financial Services office must have proof that a student has completed the entrance counseling requirement before the student's loan request can be submitted for processing.
The Direct Loan Entrance Counseling Session can be found off-site at:
Important: When you get to the section of the Entrance Counseling Session that asks for Selected Schools, you must type in Cumberland University to proceed. Once you have successfully completed the Entrance Counseling Session, you can then submit your loan application. The Student Financial Services office will process your loan request within 15 business days.
Step 3: Signing the Master Promissory Note (MPN)
Students, who are borrowing for the first time through the Federal Direct Loan for the Subsidized and Unsubsidized, and Undergraduate Plus Loan Program, must complete a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note in order to receive their Direct Loan funds. Once you complete the MPN, you will not have to complete another MPN for the duration of your Cumberland University education.
Information Needed When Completing the Electronic MPN online:
• Department of Education PIN*
• Your social security number
• Permanent address and telephone number to complete references
• Driver license number (if applicable)
* To complete the Electronic MPN on the Web, you'll need a PIN number issued by the U.S. Department of Education. This is the same PIN number you have used to electronically sign your FAFSA. If you do not already have a PIN, you should apply for one immediately at http://www.pin.ed.gov. Approximately 3 days after you request a PIN, you will receive an email notification with instructions on how to retrieve the PIN electronically. If you requested your PIN by mail, it may take 7-10 days to arrive. If you already have a PIN, but cannot locate it, see http://www.pin.ed.gov/pinlose.htm. (Note: Your PIN is not the same as the DRN number shown on your Student Aid Report.)
How to complete the Electronic MPN:
Before completing the MPN online at http://dlenote.ed.gov, it is extremely important to review the What You Need and What to Expect sections of the Web site to be sure that you have a compatible browser and the correct settings for Adobe Acrobat Reader.
We encourage you to complete the MPN online at http://dlenote.ed.gov in order to receive your Direct Loan funds in a timely manner. When you complete the MPN online, you will receive a confirmation number, verifying that the federal government (the lender) has received and accepted your MPN instantaneously. If you request that a paper copy of the MPN be sent to you for completion, there are more steps involved in approving and disbursing your Direct Loan, possibly causing delays in receiving your funds.
Do I have to wait until my loan request is approved, and a Direct Loan is originated by the Student Financial Services office at Cumberland University, before completing my Electronic MPN?
No. You should complete the Electronic MPN as soon as you decide that you want to borrow a Federal Direct Loan. The most common delay in the delivery of Federal Direct Loan funds is not signing the MPN on time. Completing the Electronic MPN early will help prevent a delay in the delivery of your loan funds.
Step 4: Complete the Direct Loan Request Form
In addition to filing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), students who want to borrow funds through the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program must complete the Active Loan Request Form, available here, or in the SFS office, Memorial Hall Rm. 103.
The Federal Direct Loan Servicing website can be found at:
More information about Direct Loans from the federal government can be found at:
The Student Financial Services office can only originate loans for a student after the student has submitted the Active Loan Request Form and registered for classes, since the number of credits registered for determines the amount of the approved loan. The loan record is then sent from CU to the Department of Education for approval to disburse the loan funds and to the Direct Loan Servicer, who checks the promissory note status.
Disbursement of Federal Direct Loan funds at Cumberland University will be credited to the student’s account via electronic funds transfer (EFT) once attendance has been confirmed for every class enrolled in during the term. First-time borrowers have a 30-day waiting period and will not receive loans funds until at least 31 calendar days into a term. Loan refunds are typically issued around the 6th week of class. Please note that if you have an outstanding tuition, housing or fees liability due to Cumberland University or you have pending aid (such as work study hours not yet worked or outside scholarships not yet received), the Business Office will deduct the amount of these charges or pending aid from your loan fund before the loan is disbursed to you.
How does a parent apply for a Federal Direct Plus Loan at Cumberland University?
The PLUS is available to the parents of dependent undergraduate students. A parent may borrow up to the total of the Cost of Attendance minus all financial aid and other resources received by the student.
The Federal Direct PLUS utilizes a Master Promissory Note (MPN). The MPN allows a parent to complete a note that, in most cases, is active for all subsequent PLUS for up to 10 years. Although the parent should not have to sign a new note for each new loan, the parent still needs to request the specific dollar amount to be borrowed and must authorize a credit check each academic year or semester by completing a plus loan request form.
In order for a parent to apply for a Federal Direct Plus Loan at Cumberland University the following steps must be completed:
1. The student must have a valid Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for 2010-2011 (cannot have errors or pending verification status) on file with the SFS office.
2. The parent must complete the Parent Plus Loan Request for 2010-2011 and return it to the SFS office to have the credit check completed. The form is can be found online here or in SFS office, Memorial Hall rm. 103.
3. If the parent borrower does not have an active MPN on file, he/she may complete one online at http://dlenote.ed.gov. NOTE: The parent completing the PLUS Loan Request MUST be the same parent that signs and completes the MPN.
4. Please note that a parent borrowing on behalf of a student is not required to complete entrance counseling.
5. If the credit check is approved, and an active MPN is on file, the loan funds will be credited to the student’s University Account.
6. If the credit check is denied, the student may contact the SFS office to inquire about eligibility for additional Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loans.
The Student Financial Services office can only originate Plus loans for a student after the student has registered for classes, since the number of credits registered for determines the amount of the approved loan. The loan record is then sent from CU to the Department of Education for approval to disburse the loan funds and to the Direct Loan Servicer, who checks the promissory note status.
Disbursement of Federal Direct Plus Loan funds at Cumberland University will be credited to the student’s account via electronic funds transfer (EFT) once attendance has been confirmed for each class the student is enrolled in during the term. Loan refunds are typically issued around the 6th week of class. Please note that if the student has outstanding tuition, housing or fees liability due to Cumberland University or has pending aid (such as work study hours not yet worked or outside scholarships not yet received), the Business Office will deduct the amount of these charges or pending aid from the loan funds before the refund is issued to the appropriate person listed on the Plus Loan Request Form.
For questions or concerns regarding either the Federal Direct Loan or Federal Direct Plus Loan process at Cumberland please contact the Student Financial Services Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 1 (615) 547-1298. If you would like to meet with a SFS representative to discuss your questions or concerns the SFS office is located in Memorial Hall, rm. 103 and is open from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm. Appointments are not required but suggested to ensure that a representative is available to speak with you. You may request an appointment by emailing the SFS office at email@example.com or by telephone at
1 (615) 547-1298.