Loans are an invaluable resource to college students in financing a college education. Be sure you understand all of your rights and responsibilities before you accept a loan.

Types of Loans

Students considering student loans need to be aware of the differences between federal student loans and private student loans .

Federal Student Loans

Private Student Loans

Federal student loans are required by law to provide a range of flexible repayment options including, but not limited to, income-based and income-contingent repayment plans, as well as loan forgiveness benefits that private lenders are not required to provide.

Federal direct loans are available to most students regardless of income. Other qualification criteria may apply. Other qualification criteria can be found here.

Private student loan lenders can offer variable interest rates that can increase or decrease over time, depending on market conditions. 

The interest rate on a private loan may depend on the borrower’s and/or co-signer’s credit rating.

Private student loans have a range of interest rates and fees. Students should determine the interest rate and any fees associated with any private student loan they borrow before accepting the loan. Students should contact the lender of the private student loan (for an alternative loan) or the Financial Aid Office (for an institutional loan) if they have any questions about a private student loan.

Oxy offers private (institutional) student loans. If the student is offered an institutional loan they should know:

  • Interest rates on all institutional loans are fixed, not variable
  • Our loans can have a range of interest rates
  • Our loans are not awarded based on the credit history of the student borrower
  • Our loans do not require a co-signer

Loan Requirements

First-time loan borrowers must complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Online Entrance Counseling for each loan program from which they borrow. Students can accept, decline, or reduce any or part of their loans in their Financial Aid (FA) Portal.

Follow the chart below for a list of loan requirements:


First-Time Borrowers

Continuing Borrowers

Federal Direct 

Sub/Unsub Loan

  1. Update your FA Portal
  2. Master Promissory Note
  3. Online Entrance Counseling
  1. Update your FA Portal

Oxy No/Low Interest Loan

  1. Update your FA Portal
  2. Online Entrance Counseling
  3. Master Promissory Note
  4. Disclosure Statements 
  1. Update your FA Portal
  2. Disclosure Statements 

Federal Parent PLUS Loan

  1. Direct PLUS Loan Request
  2. Master Promissory Note
  1. Direct PLUS Loan Request

Emergency Loans

If you are experiencing a short-term emergency, you may be eligible for a Dean's loan. A Dean’s Loan cannot exceed $500 and must be paid by the end of the semester in which the loan is taken. To apply for a Dean's loan, please contact the Dean of Student's Office at 323-259-2661 or stop by Berkus Hall, Main Floor.

Contact Financial Aid
Office of Financial Aid

AGC Room 119
Occidental College
1600 Campus Road F-35
Los Angeles, CA 90041-3314