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Consumer Information: Private Loans and Lenders

Private Education Loans

Students at the Illinois College of Optometry typically finance their educational programs through the Department of Education’s federal Student Aid Programs. Students utilizing these programs are able to meet their full cost of attendance without needing to borrow from private source lenders.

ICO will work with the lender of the student’s choice, but does not maintain a list of private loan lenders. It is important to note that private educational loans can only be approved for educationally related expenses.

Upon request, ICO will provide the following information to the private student loan borrower:

  • Cost of Attendance 
  • Estimated Financial Assistance 
  • Difference between the Cost of Attendance and the Estimated Financial Assistance 

It’s important to note that for students receiving federal student aid, ICO awards up to the full cost of attendance. Therefore, private loan lenders are unable to authorize an education loan when the student is also taking out their full eligibility in federal student aid.

Preferred Lender Arrangement

ICO does not participate in any preferred lender arrangements. Current federal regulations require all subsidized, unsubsidized and graduate plus loans to be processed through the direct loan program.

Students who wish to borrow through private education loan lenders may select the lender of their choice.