There are three basic types of financial aid: loans, grants and work-study. Each type has different features and advantages.

Loans

In terms of total dollars available, long-term federal loan programs provide the most dollars. Federal loans must be repaid after the grace period and/or deferment periods have expired. Students must generally remain enrolled at least half-time (five credit hours for graduate students). Multiple repayment plans may be available for most federal loans. Selected loan programs include:

  • Federal Direct Loan (unsubsidized)
  • Health Professions Student Loan
  • Loan for Disadvantaged Students
  • Nursing Student Loan
  • Primary Care Loan

Borrowers in the Federal Direct Loan Program are required to complete loan counseling prior to the first disbursement if you have not previously received a Direct Loan, Federal Family Education Loan or Supplemental Loans to Students Loan. To complete entrance counseling for the Federal Direct Loan Program, go to finaid.vcu.edu/assistance/loans/entrance.html.

You will also be required to complete exit counseling before you graduate, withdraw or drop below half-time status. To complete exit counseling for the Federal Direct Loan program, go to finaid.vcu.edu/assistance/loans/exit.html.

Grants

Contact individual academic departments for information about grant or scholarship programs.

Work-study

Work-study is a form of financial aid that pays wages for work performed through employment. Work-study positions are located on campus and in approved off-campus locations. Hourly wages will vary depending on skills and experience. Job listings are posted to the University Career Services’ website. When interviewing for work-study positions, students should take copies of their Financial Aid Notifications to show prospective employers.