The Texas College Access Loan Program

Provides Educational Loans to Texas Students Who Have Difficulty Meeting the Cost of Attendance

When a student applies for financial aid for college using the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, the Department of Education estimates how much the student and his or her family can afford to spend on the student's upcoming year of education, also known as the expected family contribution, or EFC. The student's school then subtracts the EFC from the cost of attendance (COA). This difference between COA and EFC is the student's financial need.

The school tries to meet that need, depending on the student's eligibility, by awarding grants, scholarships, and/or federal student loans. For many students, the amount of aid awarded by the school is not enough to fill the gap between cost and aid. Moreover, sometimes the EFC is more than a family can pay out of pocket, which makes paying for college difficult.

The Texas College Access Loan (CAL) Program is designed to help with this situation. Families may use the CAL to make up part or all of the gap between cost and aid, or even to replace what they are expected to pay (the EFC). While families do not have to demonstrate financial need, be aware that either the student borrower or a loan cosigner needs to demonstrate a good credit record to be eligible for the loan.

Students who qualify for the CAL can enjoy benefits they might not receive from privately issued loans, such as a fixed interest rate of 5.25 percent, a six-month grace period after the borrower leaves school, no interest capitalization, and several repayment plan options.

To apply for a CAL Program loan, go here.
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