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Undergraduate and Graduate Student Loan

Unique loan for Illinois residents studying at qualifying Illinois institutions

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* Will not impact your credit score.

Illinois Partnership Loan Program

Are you an Illinois resident attending or planning to attend an Illinois college or university? If so and if financial aid and other resources are not enough to cover college costs, ISL Education Lending has partnered with the Office of the Illinois State Treasurer to offer the Illinois Partnership Loan Program. This Illinois program offers a new option to meet gaps in college financing.

Attending college outside of Illinois? Check out these other competitively priced loan options.

Fixed Annual Percentage Rate

3.85% APR–6.77% APR

View APR Examples for All Options (PDF).

Rates do not include the auto-debit discount, which will lower the rate.

Cosigners, Pre-Qualify Today

Your student's future is a great investment. Pre-qualify today and see the rate your student would receive before they apply. And pre-qualifying won't impact your credit score.

Compare Before Applying

As a nonprofit, we're able to offer competitive rates that are often lower than rates offered by other national for-profit private loan lenders. And, if you need to borrow, a loan with a lower interest rate can help you pay less in interest over the life of the loan.

Total Interest Paid on a $10,000 Loan

These gauges show the different estimated interest costs based on fixed rates. Shopping around to find the lowest rate you qualify for can help you save on interest costs.1

Compare Our Rate to National Private Loan Lenders

Compare our Illinois Partnership Loan fixed APRs to undergraduate loan fixed APRs offered by other private loan lenders. The rate ranges cover a variety of repayment options and include potential discounts.2 (Note: APRs are listed in ascending order of highest rate.)

ISL Education Lending: 3.60% to 6.77% APR, Sofi: 4.44% to 14.70% APR, Sallie Mae: 4.50% to 15.49% APR, College Ave: 4.39% to 16.49% APR

Applying Is Simple

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Provide basic information.

Enter information about yourself and school. Consider applying with one or two cosigners.

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Choose your option.

Select from one of three in-school payment options.

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Sign and accept your loan.

Review and sign your application and submit any supporting documents.

All the details. It's a simple idea. We think you should know our credit requirements so you can determine if you qualify before applying.

You Decide When to Start Repaying

There are both benefits and drawbacks to making payments of some sort while you're in school or postponing repayment until after your college days are behind you.

Pay Now

Immediate Payment Option

Pay both principal and interest while in college and after college.
In College After College
Principal & Interest Principal & Interest
Pay Interest During School

Interest-Only Payment Option

Pay interest while in college and both principal and interest after college.
In College After College
Interest Payments Principal & Interest
Pay Later

Deferred Payment Option

No payments while in college and both principal and interest after college.
In College After College
No Payments Principal & Interest

Common Questions

No. Before students and families consider a private student loan, we strongly encourage them to understand and take advantage of all sources of student financial aid, including federal loans for students. The Illinois Partnership Loan Program is designed to supplement — not replace — other sources to fill funding gaps for students and parents. Students and parents should work with financial aid professionals at their respective colleges and universities to explore and exhaust all sources of student financial aid before seeking an Illinois Partnership Loan.

To be eligible for this private student loan program, you must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident residing in Illinois. Cosigners must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents residing in the United States. Military addresses are considered U.S. addresses if designated as an APO or FPO.
  • Be of majority age pursuant to Illinois law at the time of application or be an Illinois emancipated minor. An applicant not of majority age may apply with an eligible cosigner.
  • Not have defaulted on any private or government student loan.
  • Not have an active bankruptcy case.
  • Be attending any nonprofit, Title IV eligible, degree-granting, accredited Illinois college or university.
  • Be accepted, enrolled or attending on at least a half-time basis, as defined by the school, and be making satisfactory academic progress in an eligible education program.
  • Complete Student Loan Game Plan while applying or within the last 270 days before applying.

This loan is for borrowers and one or more creditworthy cosigners. Note: Applicants who are creditworthy (meet the underwriting and credit criteria) are not required to provide cosigners.

To qualify, you or your cosigners must have:

  • Monthly payments for approved credit (mortgages, rent, car loans, credit cards and other forms of credit, including the loan for which the student has submitted an application) that do not exceed 40% of gross monthly income (if a mortgage or rent is not included, debt-to-income ratio cannot exceed 25%). All student loan debt will be treated as though it is in repayment.
  • Continuous employment over the last two years. (This requirement may be waived for retirees, disabled persons or those receiving a verified income.)
  • A FICO score of at least 660. (The FICO score used is the TransUnion FICO Score 8 which is based on data from TransUnion and may be different from other credit scores. FICO is a registered trademark of the Fair Isaac Corporation.)
  • No more than two accounts reporting 30-day delinquencies and no delinquencies of 60 days or more during the previous two years.
  • No charge-offs, repossessions, collection accounts, judgments, foreclosures, garnishments by credit providers or tax liens.
  • No previous bankruptcies.
  • Not defaulted on any private or government student loan.

Note: For joint cosigned Illinois Partnership Loans, at least one cosigner must meet all credit underwriting criteria with the exception of the debt-to-income ratio.

The list of criteria above may not be exhaustive. ISL Education Lending may require you or your cosigners to meet additional criteria in order to qualify for a loan. ISL Education Lending reserves the right to change the list of criteria in any way from time to time.

You can release any cosigners from payment obligations:

  1. After the first 24 consecutive monthly principal and interest payments are received on time.
  2. If you meet the underwriting and credit criteria at the time the cosigner release is requested.

You may borrow up to the cost of attendance minus other aid each year. Your school must certify that the amount you are requesting does not exceed this amount.

Use the student loan payment calculator to estimate how much your monthly student loan payment will be once you start repayment.

No; interest-only payments cannot be made using our auto-debit system. This is because the interest amount due each month is not a set amount and will change based on when your payment is received and the difference in the number of days in each month.

You may use auto-debit once principal and interest repayment begins, which is typically after you have left school.

You can earn a 0.25% interest rate reduction by signing up to have principal and interest payments automatically withdrawn. The 0.25% interest rate reduction will apply once payments begin to be automatically deducted. The reduction will remain in effect as long as automatic payments continue without interruption during the repayment period. The 0.25% interest rate reduction will not lower the monthly payment amount but will instead reduce the interest amount that accrues. The interest rate reduction will be suspended during approved assistance or if automatic payments are rejected due to insufficient funds.

Interest that is not paid during deferments or under other circumstances is capitalized (or added to the principal balance of the loan). Interest on the Illinois Partnership Loan capitalizes at:

  • The end of any qualifying deferment period for all loan options.
  • The start of repayment status for loans that do not require principal and interest or interest-only payments while the student is enrolled and during the separation period.
  • The final disbursement of loans that require monthly principal and interest payments while the student is enrolled in school and that have more than one disbursement.

You may qualify for assistance based on your situation. Please call us as soon as possible if you experience issues, so we can help you avoid delinquency.

In the unfortunate event of a borrower's death or qualifying total and permanent disability, Iowa Student Loan Liquidity Corporation will forgive the loan and not require cosigners or the borrower's estate to satisfy the loan obligation. A tax professional or the IRS can provide additional information about possible tax consequences of loan forgiveness.

No; in the event of a cosigner's death or qualifying total and permanent disability, you will not be required to find a new cosigner for an existing loan. In addition, if a cosigner suffers a qualifying total and permanent disability, Iowa Student Loan Liquidity Corporation will release the cosigner from his or her obligation.

Capital for private loans available through the Illinois Partnership Program is provided by the Office of the Illinois State Treasurer. The private loans are serviced by Aspire Servicing Center.

  • 1 These calculations assume the student borrower makes no payments while in school and during a six-month separation period, for a total of 51 months where repayment is deferred. The interest rate is assumed to be the same during the in-school period and separation period and once the borrower enters a 15-year repayment period. No origination fees are included in these examples. Repayment plans that require interest-only monthly payments or principal and interest payments during the in-school period may result in smaller total interest charges. Back to content
  • 2 Many lenders only offer limited information about their actual rates upfront. They do not provide all the rate details within the range of rates depicted on this graph. The specific rate an applicant is offered will be determined by the loan type selected and the applicant's or, if applicable, the cosigner's credit history and credit score. Annual percentage rates (APRs) were retrieved from the lenders' websites on May 7, 2024, for fixed-rate loans for student borrowers while the student is enrolled at least half time. The ranges contain rates offered to applicants with a wide range of credit scores and for a variety of repayment options and terms.

    Because each lender offers different in-school repayment options and different repayment terms, an identical loan comparison between lenders is not possible. However, the APRs in the chart are listed as the highest and lowest rates for each lender and include potential rate reductions that may not apply to every borrower. For example, a 0.25% automatic payment interest rate reduction (repayment benefit) has been included for the lowest rate displayed for all lenders as well as the highest rate for SoFi and College Ave. For complete details on how APRs were calculated, visit the lenders' websites.

    Before applying for a student loan from any lender, you should consider additional characteristics, including: credit requirements, monthly payment amount, origination fees, capitalization frequency, borrower benefits and protections, repayment term, when repayment begins, and the total amount to be repaid over the life of the loan. Back to content