Federal vs Private: The Lowdown On MBA Loans

You’ve made it this far, and you’re ready to start working towards your MBA, now you just need to find the money.

You’ve done the hard work and applied for as many grants and scholarships as you can, but now you need to bridge that final gap between the money you have and the money you need. There are two main options for students looking for a loan for their MBA program, Federal loans and private loans.

Federal Loans

The unfortunate reality is that it’s unlikely you will be able to cover the entire cost of an MBA through scholarships, grants, fellowships and otherwise. If you are among the majority of MBA students who take out a loan to pay for school, research what federal loan options are available to you. Federal loans are typically a better option for students than private loans, since they offer fixed rates and acceptance isn’t based on credit history. Students also may not be required to make payments on the loan until after graduation. Federal loans are popular among graduate students because they minimize the student’s financial risk. Fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to get started on your path to federal money!

Private Loans

A private loan from a bank or private lender should certainly be the last option you explore for funding your MBA program. Private loans will accrue interest at higher rates than federal loans, and you may be denied based on your credit history. However if you are confident that you will be able to make the payments on time and have a good credit history, a private loan may help you get the money you need quickly. Make sure to find a loan that offers a fair interest rate that won’t put you into unmanageable debt.

Whether you end up deciding on taking out a federal or private loan, make sure you take the time to research which option fits best with your finances. Getting an MBA is an investment in your future, and you want to make sure you get the best return.