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Private Education Loans

Private education loans are available from a variety of lenders and banks to help students cover the gap between the cost of attending La Sierra University and the amount of other financial aid received.  Always consider your lowest-cost options first by applying for federal, state and institutional financial aid.  See: How to Apply.  If you would like to discuss the federal, state, and institutional student financial aid available to you, call us, make an appointment with your financial counselor, or just stop by for a visit.

You may choose any private education lender you wish.  To assist in your search, we provide a list of lenders that La Sierra University students have borrowed from in the past three years.

Truth in Lending Act

The Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (HEAO) added section 128(e) (3) to TILA which requires private loan lenders to obtain a completed and signed U.S. Department of Education Self-Certification Form from the applicant. In addition, the private loan lender must provide disclosures to borrowers at different stages of the application process.

Read more information regarding the Truth in Lending Act

Process of applying:

1. Research your private education lender options. Pay close attention to the terms and conditions of the loans. Questions you will want to ask each lender are: 

  • Is the interest rate on the loan fixed or variable? A variable interest rate might be lower to begin with, but unlike fixed interest rate loans, nothing keeps the lender from changing the interest rate on a variable interest rate loan.
  • Will I need a co-signer? If you have not established a credit history of your own, you will likely need a co-signer. Interest rates could also vary based on your (and/or your co-signer’s) credit score.
  • What are the repayment terms and options? 

2. Once you’ve made a decision, apply for the loan on the lender’s website. Indicate that you are attending La Sierra University.  Our school code is 00121500.

3. Submit any follow up documentation required by your lender.  For example, promissory note, Private Education Loan Applicant Self-Certification Form, disclosure notices, etc.

4. If applying with a co-signer, make sure the co-signer submits all of the required documentation.

5. When the loan is fully approved, your lender will notify the Student Financial Services Office of your approved loan.  We will certify the loan and add it to your Financial Aid Award Letter.  The amount we can certify cannot exceed your cost of attendance minus other financial aid you are receiving. If you request a larger loan than we are allowed to certify, we may be required to reduce it down to an allowable amount. Contact us if you have education expenses that exceed the standard cost of attendance.

6. Loans typically disburse in 3 equal disbursements to your student account in the same manner your other financial aid disburses.  If you need your loan to be disbursed in unequal disbursements, please contact us ahead of time.

Helpful Tool:

This Loan Payment Calculator computes an estimate of the size of your monthly loan payments and the annual salary required to manage them without too much financial difficulty. This loan calculator can be used with Federal education loans (Direct, Perkins, and PLUS) and most private student loans. (This student loan calculator can also be used as an auto loan calculator or to calculate your mortgage payments.) :

For any questions regarding Private Loans, please contact Student Financial Services at (951) 785-2175 or sfs@lasierra.edu.




Schedule an appointment with a financial counselor.

piggy bank


Institutional and privately donated funds offered by La Sierra University and other entities.

tuition and costs

Tuition & Costs

Undergraduate, graduate, and other academic and summer programs tuition and costs.

Financial Aid Timeline / Checklist


  • Complete the FAFSA for the coming school year at www.fafsa.ed.gov (use estimated income if taxes not finished).
  • La Sierra’s FAFSA code is 001215.
  • La Sierra’s early admissions acceptance begins.


  • Attend a FAFSA & Scholarship Workshop (dates/times on OrgSync & School Calendar).
  • Submit Cal Grant GPA verification (due March 2).
  • Reserve a spot in the summer freshmen orientation program.
  • Apply for scholarships.
  • Current students only: apply for endowed scholarships through the Advancement office.


  • File taxes as early as possible. Recommend e-filing.
  • Track your Cal Grant application status at www.calgrants.org.
  • Schedule an appointment for a financial estimate with a La Sierra University enrollment counselor.


  • Go into the FAFSA and use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to update the financial information after taxes are filed.
  • Watch for your La Sierra award notification letter from the office of Student Financial Services.


  • Turn in all documents requested by La Sierra’s Student Financial Services to complete your financial aid file by May 15.


  • Complete any paperwork necessary for your student loans to be processed.
  • Finalize your payment plan with La Sierra’s Student Financial Services.


  • Make your first payment by September 10.
  • Buy your books before classes begin.

Useful webpages:

Useful Phone Numbers:

  • FAFSA: 1-800-4-FEDAID
  • Cal Grant: 1-888-CA-GRANT
  • IRS Transcript: 1-800-829-3676
  • La Sierra Enrollment Services: 951-785-2000
  • La Sierra Student Financial Services: 951-785-2175
  • La Sierra Bookstore: 951-785-2196
  • La Sierra Student Life: 951-785-2100

Have Questions?

Contact or visit the following:

Financial Counselors

John Sheldon Hadley
A - E
Financial Counselor
Jackie Isenmann
F - L
Financial Counselor
Letty Fonseca
M - R
Financial Counselor
Julain Gunn-Clarke
S - Z
Financial Counselor

Other Staff

Elina Bascom
Esther Kinzer
Sr. Associate Director
Denyu Miller
Associate Director
Audrey Gaspard
Assistant Director
Ingrid Murphy
Data Load Manager

Frequently Asked Questions About Financial Aid

How do I apply for financial aid?

You can apply for aid online at FAFSA on the web.

What is the La Sierra University school code?

The La Sierra University school code is: 001215

How long does the process take?

The FAFSA application process itself can take as little as 20 minutes when you have all of the information necessary readily available. Always remember to apply as early as possible (January 1 through March 2, prior to the following fall term) because some program funds are limited and awarded on a "first-come-first-served" basis. From the time that you submit your FAFSA online, it usually takes 3-5 business days for our school to receive your FAFSA.

How will I know how much aid I qualify for?

An award letter stating the type of aid, amount and conditions of your award will be mailed to you. You must review your award letter and if you find any discrepancies with your estimate, please contact the Student Financial Services office as soon as possible.

What happens if I decide to attend part-time?

Your aid may be reduced or canceled in some cases in order to comply with regulations or eligibility requirements.

What is an estimate, and how do I get one?

La Sierra University Enrollment Services (Recruitment) will provide all new students with a preliminary estimate of the financial aid awards that they may receive. Estimates are based upon information supplied to the enrollment services staff by the student or student's family. Verification of the student's information may modify the actual amounts provided in the student's official aid offer from La Sierra University Student Financial Services.

I was awarded a federal direct loan, but I want to reduce the amount. how can I do that?

Contact your financial aid counselor in the office of Student Financial Services.

What if I need to take some or all of my classes at another school?

You can only receive financial aid from the school in which you are accepted and enrolled in a program. As long as you are seeking a degree at La Sierra University and the classes will be credited toward your La Sierra University degree, you may be eligible to receive assistance. Contact the La Sierra University Student Financial Services office to see which forms you must complete and for which programs you may qualify.

What if I completely withdraw from classes? will I have to repay my financial aid?

Yes, if you withdraw before 60% of the term is completed, you will be required to repay a percentage of the aid you received since the funds were awarded to meet educational expenses for the entire quarter.

How will my fees be paid and what happens to the money that exceeds my fees?

Approximately three weeks (five weeks for first-time borrowers) after school starts your aid will be applied to your tuition. Any remaining credit will be mailed by the bursar's office to your local address on file at the registrar's office, or deposited directly into your bank account if you have submitted the Direct Deposit form to the bursar's office. Direct Deposit is the preferred method of delivery since it expedites the process and gets you your refund sooner.

What happens if I have been awarded a loan, but never complete the paperwork for it?

If you are a first-time borrower at La Sierra University, you will need to complete the Entrance Counseling and Master Promissory Note for the Federal Direct Loans at www.studentloans.gov. If you have been awarded a Federal Perkins Loan, you must complete the Entrance Counseling and Master Promissory Note in person at the Department of Accounts and Loans, Administration Building room 107. Loans will not pay onto your student account until the paperwork requirements have been completed. 

How can I get information about my award?

You can call, email, or come to the Student Financial Services office to get the information.

Do I need to be admitted before I can apply for financial aid?

No, but you must be admitted before you can receive your award letter or financial aid.

How do I know which offices to deal with for financial planning?

The office of Student Financial Services is responsible for advising applicants about financial aid; collecting all required paperwork; determining estimated family contributions; and awarding all financial aid except leadership/merit type scholarships (which are awarded by the office of Enrollment Services). The office of Student Financial Services is the central processing office for the FAFSA, and all financial aid, including government grants and loans, outside resources, and La Sierra University aid.

The office of Student Financial Services establishes your total payment package. After you have received all the financial aid, grants, and scholarships available from the Financial Aid and Enrollment Services offices, you will receive financial clearance and Student Financial Services can guide you in setting up a payment plan.

are deadlines important?

Yes! Deadlines are critical. March 2 is the priority deadline. For example: a qualifying California resident will lose the Cal Grant (up to $9,704!) if they miss this deadline. There may still be other funds available later, but many funds are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. In order to maximize your aid offer, apply early!

My family income has changed since I filed my fafsa. What should I do?

Submit a request for professional judgment to a counselor at the Student Financial Services office. You will be asked to submit written documentation of the change. After a review of your request, you may be awarded additional assistance.

What is considered in calculating how much my family can afford to contribute?

It's a complex calculation which takes into account a variety of factors including family income and size, total assets, parents' age (and their need to save for retirement) and the number of family members in college.

If the information on the FAFSA does not accurately reflect your ability to pay for college, or your family has extenuating financial circumstances, you should contact your student financial services counselor if you have any questions.

The FAFSA asks for information about my parents, but I do not receive any support from them. What do I do?

Federal regulations require your eligibility to be based on your income and that of your parents unless you are 24 years old; married, or have legal dependents other than a spouse; are a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces; an orphan or ward of the court (or you were until age 18); or will be working on a degree beyond a bachelor's. If you think that you have exceptional circumstances contact your La Sierra University financial counselor about a possible dependency override.

What determines how much I'll be offered, and whether I'll get loans, grants, or work?

The amount of your award is determined by the amount of your financial need and available funding. The greater your need, the more aid we can offer you. The kind of aid you are awarded depends on your eligibility for the various aid programs. Each has its own requirements. Most students are offered a combination of gift assistance (grants and scholarships which don't have to be repaid) and "self-help" aid (loans and/or work opportunities).

can I get a book advance?

A Book Advance allows students to use a portion of their anticipated financial aid, up to $550, to purchase textbooks and supplies from the campus bookstore prior to the beginning of Fall, Winter, and Spring terms. Students who have been awarded federal or state aid and who will have a credit balance after tuition and other campus charges are paid are eligible for a book advance.

1) Joe's charges for the quarter are $14,000 and he has approved aid in the amount of $14,600. Joe would be eligible for a book advance of $550.
2) Sue's charges for the quarter are $14,000 and she has approved aid in the amount of $14,200. Sue is eligible for a book advance in the amount of $200.
*The amount of the book advance is based on a student's registration, charges, and aid at the time the advance is made. Any changes to the registration, charges, or aid after the advance is given may require the student to repay the funds received.