Direct Loans & Benefits

Important Dates and Deadlines

Prospective & Current Students

Date Action Needed
March 31 –       Direct Loan Request Documents for DMIN due
April 1 –       Direct Loan Request Documents/Method of Payment forms for Summer Semester due
May 31 –       Applications for MTS Scholarships due

–       Direct Loan Request Documents/Method of Payment forms for Fall Semester due

October 17 –       FAFSA Open
November 1 –       Direct Loan Request Documents/Method of Payment forms for Spring Semester & J-Term due

The Department of Education regulations at 34 C.F.R. 600.9 requires schools to: In order to be eligible to participate in Title IV programs, an institution must be legally authorized by a State to provide a post-secondary education program, and the State must have a process to review and act upon student complaints about that institution.

Memphis Theological Seminary is legally authorized by Tennessee Code Annotated § 49-7-2004(a)(6) and §49-7-2004(a)(11) and the TN Office of Attorney General is the agency responsible for reviewing any complaints from students lodging a complaint against a school authorized to legally operate in the State of TN.

Complaints can be sent to:
Office of the Attorney General and Reporter
P.O. Box 20207
Nashville, TN 37202-0207
Telephone: (615) 741-3491
Fax: (615) 741-2009

 

Direct Loan Program
A Direct Loan is a low-interest loan (Congress established a 6% interest rate for loans disbursed after July 1, 2017) funded by the U.S. Department of Education so that students may borrow while attending school and begin repayment either upon graduation or if a student drops below half-time status of at least 6 hours per semester. The principal and interest payments for Direct Loans are deferred as long as the student remains in an approved degree program.

MTS only offers unsubsidized loans which means that your loans will accrue interest while you are in school.

The Direct Loan Annual limit is $20,500 per academic year. Combined loan limit for undergraduate and graduate/professional studies is $138,500. To calculate how much loan availability you will have for your degree, you must subtract your current loan total from $138,500 and that is how much you have to go towards borrowing for your degree. If you need more than the $138,500, you are able to request the Direct Loan Plus which you must credit qualify for and will have a higher interest rate and origination fees than the unsubsidized loans.

 

Process to Request a Direct Loan: 

FOR NEW STUDENTS

  1. Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) provided by the U. S. Department of Education. Apply on-line at fafsa.ed.govPLEASE FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS CAREFULLY.There is no fee to submit the application. The FAFSA must be completed in order to process a Student Aid Report (used to process Loans). Each FAFSA covers one school year (example: Fall 2018/Spring 2019/Summer 2019). A new FAFSA must be completed each school year. The school code for Memphis Theological Seminary is G10529. The MTS Financial Aid Office strongly encourages applicants to select the option to allow the FAFSA to retrieve your IRS data. Doing so will save you time by eliminating the need for MTS to request additional tax forms from you at a later date if you are selected for verification. It takes 3-5 business days for the FAFSA to reach our Financial Aid Office.
  2. Complete On-Line Entrance Counseling must be completed before you are able to request Direct Loans from MTS and only needs to be done once. Entrance Counseling helps you to understand what it means to take out a federal student loan.
  3. Complete On-Line Electronic Master Promissory Note (MPN) which is a legal document used to make one or more Direct Loans. By signing an MPN, the borrower agrees to repay all loans made under the MPN. The MPN last for up to ten years.
  4. Complete Method of Payment Form – must be completed each semester to notify the business office as to what method of payment you have chosen to pay for the semester tuition.
    • Method of Payment Form 2018-2019 – To be used for each semester (Fall 2018, J-Term 2019, Spring 2019 and Summer 2019 for Master or Audit Students.
    • Method of Payment Form 2018-2019 – To be used for each semester (Fall 2018 and Spring 2019) for Doctor of Ministry Students.
  5. Complete Loan Request Form – must be completed each time loan funds are requested.
    • Loan Request Form 2018-2019 – Valid for Fall 2018, J-Term 2019, Spring 2019 and Summer 2019 for Master or Audit Students.
    • Loan Request Form 2018-2019 – Valid for Fall 2018 and Spring 2019 for Doctor of Ministry Students.
  6. Identification by providing a copy of your driver’s license or state ID and social security card
  7. Institutional Student Information Report Form – by signing this document you affirm that the funds from your direct loan will only be used for educational purposes.
  8. Registration Status Form – by signing it you confirm that you have registered for Selective Service or the reason you are not required to register.

*When scheduling your initial appointment with Financial Aid, make sure that you schedule your appointment 3-5 days after you have completed your FAFSA.

FOR CURRENT STUDENTS

  1. Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) provided by the U. S. Department of Education. Apply on-line at fafsa.ed.govPLEASE FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS CAREFULLY.There is no fee to submit the application. The FAFSA must be completed in order to process a Student Aid Report (used to process Loans). Each FAFSA covers one school year (example: Fall 2018/Spring 2019/Summer 2019). A new FAFSA must be completed each school year. The school code for Memphis Theological Seminary is G10529. The MTS Financial Aid Office strongly encourages applicants to select the option to allow the FAFSA to retrieve your IRS data. Doing so will save you time by eliminating the need for MTS to request additional tax forms from you at a later date if you are selected for verification. It takes 3-5 business days for the FAFSA to reach our Financial Aid Office.
  2. Complete Method of Payment Form – must be completed each semester to notify the business office as to what method of payment you have chosen to pay for the semester tuition.
    • Method of Payment Form 2018-2019 – To be used for each semester (Fall 2018, J-Term 2019, Spring 2019 and Summer 2019 for Master or Audit Students.
    • Method of Payment Form 2018-2019 – To be used for each semester (Fall 2018 and Spring 2019) for Doctor of Ministry Students.
  3. Complete Loan Request Form – must be completed each time loan funds are requested.
    • Loan Request Form 2018-2019 – Valid for Fall 2018, J-Term 2019, Spring 2019 and Summer 2019 for Master or Audit Students.
    • Loan Request Form 2018-2019 – Valid for Fall 2018 and Spring 2019 for Doctor of Ministry Students.
  4. Institutional Student Information Report Form – by signing this document you affirm that the funds from your direct loan will only be used for educational purposes.

*After ALL documents have been turned in to the Financial Aid Office, please allow for 7-14 business days for processing.

 

Loan Disbursements
MTS Bursar will notify the student through their MTS email when loan funds have been credited to the students account.

Disbursement of loans are contingent upon:

  • Completion of Financial Aid Documents
  • Student must be registered for current semester classes
  • Student must show satisfactory academic progress (2.0 Cumulative GPA and must complete 67% of classes attempted), when applicable
  • Academic Dean has confirmed student has met attendance requirement

 

Eligibility
Graduate or professional student definition: A graduate student is one who: is not receiving aid as an undergraduate for the same period of enrollment; is enrolled in a program above the bachelor’s degree level or one leading to a professional degree; and has completed the equivalent of at least three years of full-time study (24 credits per year x 3 years = 72 credits), either before entrance into the program or as part of it (34 Code of US Federal Regulations 668.2(b)).

A student must be enrolled half-time (6 credits) to receive financial aid through Title IV.  The Doctor of Ministry (DMin) program is considered full-time for eligibility purposes.

Attendance must be verified the first week of classes in order to receive financial aid disbursement.  DMin students will be verified for enrollment by the Academic Dean by the fifth day of the beginning of each term (May 5, November 5).

If a student is enrolled in courses that do not count toward a degree, they cannot be used to determine enrollment status unless they are eligible remedial courses.  This means students cannot receive financial aid for classes that do not count toward their degree or Drug Alcohol and Addiction Counseling Certificate (DAAC).

 

Satisfactory Academic Progress – Standards for Financial Aid Recipients
Federal and Seminary regulations require that a student maintain satisfactory academic progress in order to receive financial aid. The minimum standards of satisfactory progress are contained in this document and are applicable for the financial aid programs administered by the Seminary.

  • A student must either maintain a minimum 2.0 cumulative grade point average.  A student must maintain the Seminary’s cumulative minimum GPA to remain in good standing, rather than a 2.0 GPA for one semester.
  • A student must successfully complete 2/3 (67%) of attempted hours as determined by the student’s enrollment status.  The chart below illustrates this criterion.
Status Credit Hours Enrolled  Per Semester Hours that Must Be Completed Successfully
Full-Time Status 12 8
Three-Quarter Status 9 6
Half-Time Status 6 4

As student must complete the degree or certificate within a specified time frame.

Program Credit Hours Length MTS Time Frame
Master of Divinity 84 4-Years 7-Years
Master of Arts in Religion 36 2-Years 5-Years
Master of Arts Youth Ministry 48 2-Years 5-Years
Master of Arts in Christian Ministry 42 2-Years 5-Years
DAAC Certificate 18 1-Year 3-Years
Doctor of Ministry 36 3-Years 6-Years

A student’s entire academic history (including credits transferred from other schools) is evaluated to determine the satisfactory academic progress whether or not financial assistance was received.

Standards for Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) will be evaluated annually at the end of the spring semester, as grades are posted.  A student who fails to meet SAP will no longer be eligible to receive assistance under the Title IV, HEA programs unless the student has appealed and has been placed on financial aid probation.

Successful Completing of a Class is defined as having earned a grade of A, B, C, D or P. Unsatisfactory completion or non-completion of a class is defined as having earned a grade of F, W, or I.

 

Financial Aid Probation
When a student loses Federal Student Aid (FSA) eligibility because they failed to make satisfactory progress, the school will permit an appeal made to the Director of Financial Aid on the basis of:

  • Personal injury
  • Illness
  • The death of a relative
  • or other special circumstance(s)

This appeal must explain why the student failed to make satisfactory academic progress and what has changed in their personal situation that will allow the student to make satisfactory academic progress at the next evaluation.

If the Financial Aid Director determines, based on the appeal, that the student should be able to meet the SAP standards by the end of the subsequent payment period, the Financial Aid Director may place the student on probation without an academic plan.  The student’s progress must be reviewed after the next payment period, as probation status is for one payment period only.

If it is determined, based on the appeal, that the student will require more than one payment period to meet progress standards, the Financial Aid Director may place the student on probation and develop an academic plan for the student.  The Financial Aid Director will review the student’s progress at the end of one payment period as required of the student’s probation status, to determine if the student is meeting the requirements of the academic plan. If the student is meeting the requirements of the academic plan, the student is eligible to receive Title IV aid as long as the student continues to meet those requirements and is reviewed according to the requirements specified in the plan.

Repeated Courses:  When repeating a course, students may receive financial aid for a course if the previous grade was an F or W.  In addition, students may also receive financial aid for a repeated course if the initial grade earned does not meet the pre-requisite requirement for the next course in the sequence.  Students may only receive financial aid for a repeated course once.

Non-Credit Courses:  These courses are not eligible for Title IV assistance and do not satisfy requirements of any Title IV eligible academic program.  As such they are not considered in the Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress.

 

Veterans Benefits (contact the nearest Department of Veterans Affairs)
Memphis Theological Seminary is approved for persons wishing to study under the provisions for educational benefits for veterans of the U.S. military services.  Information regarding benefits available should be obtained directly from the nearest office of the Department of Veterans Affairs. Inquiries regarding assistance by the seminary in processing applications should be addressed to:

Mary Byrd, Bursar
Memphis Theological Seminary
168 East Parkway South, Memphis, TN 38104
901.334.5826 Office
mbyrd@MemphisSeminary.edu

 

Questions regarding Financial Aid, please contact:
Fekecia Gunn, Financial Aid Director
Memphis Theological Seminary
Brown Shannon Building, 2nd floor, B-205
168 East Parkway South, Memphis, TN 38104
901.334.5887 Office/ 901.452.4051 Fax
FinancialAid@MemphisSeminary.edu

 

Other Important Financial Aid Information: