Information for Parents of Undergraduate Students
Federal Direct PLUS Loans for Parents
Because undergraduate costs can be significant, the Southern Miss Office of Financial Aid is here to assist your family with meeting your student's educational expenses. In addition to your student's federal grants and Federal Direct Stafford Loans, you may also want to consider borrowing a Federal Direct PLUS Loan when deciding how your family will finance your student's education. Federal Direct PLUS Loans are low-interest unsubsidized loans for parents to help pay for the cost of a student's education after high school. In order to apply for a Federal Direct PLUS Loan, you must visit www.studentloans.gov.
Federal Direct Loan Overview and Borrowing Limits
There are two types of Federal Direct Loans and your student's eligibility is determined after their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) has been reviewed.
- Direct Subsidized Loans are interest-free while your student is enrolled in college at least half-time.
- Direct Unsubsidized Loans accrue interest while your student is enrolled in college. The student can choose to pay the interest each month while in school or allow the interest to accumulate.
Loan-borrow limits for each academic year are dependent upon your student's class level and can be found here.
Each year the U.S. Department of Education randomly selects a percentage of our student population for a process called verification. If your student is selected for verification, you are encouraged to submit the requested documentation to the Office of Financial Aid and Veterans Affairs in a timely manner. Failure to do so could cause a delay in your student being awarded financial aid.
Parent Access to Student Records
The University of Southern Mississippi's Office of the University Registrar posts the university's policies regarding privacy of student information under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). FERPA regulations forbid the Southern Miss Office of Financial Aid and Veterans Affairs from disclosing any student's financial aid information to parents unless the student provides written consent.