Alternative Loans

Private or alternative educational loans are not federally guaranteed and should be considered after your eligibility for all other types of federal aid, including Federal Pell Grants, Federal Direct Loans, and Federal Direct PLUS loans have been exhausted.

Advantages & Drawbacks

The repayment terms of federal loan programs may be more favorable than the terms of private student loans. Private loans cannot be included in Federal Direct Consolidation Loans and are not eligible for the Federal Income-Based Repayment Plans or for Federal Economic Hardship Deferments.

Private educational loan programs require the borrower to have a satisfactory credit history and may require a cosigner in some cases. Before selecting a lender, students should carefully review all program information, such as interest rates, benefits, and repayment provisions.

Lender List

Visit ELMSelect for a list of private lenders who currently offer private student loans before selecting a lender. If you have a previous private loan with a lender that is not listed on ELMSelect and you intend to remain with that lender, contact the Financial Aid Office and the lender to initiate the new loan.

Borrowers should initiate the private student loan application process directly with the lender in order to ensure all of the preliminary steps (credit approvals, promissory notes, etc.) have been completed prior to CCA's certification of the loan application.

NOTE: The choices on ELMSelect represent a historical list of lenders which previous CCA students have used to help finance their education. CCA does not endorse in any way any of the lenders on this list, and will process any private loan lender of your choosing whether they appear in ELMSelect or not. This list is not in any particular order and is randomized each time you visit the ELMSelect Site.

Loan Application Tips

Gather Information

Before completing an application, make sure you gather important information such as your:

  • current address and phone number
  • social security number (SSN)
  • driver’s license number
  • employment information—yours and your cosigner’s--if applicable name and contact information of at least one personal reference

Find A Cosigner

Most applicants will need to have a cosigner to meet lender credit requirements.

Select A Lender & Apply Online

Visit ELMSelect to compare loans and choose a lender. If your lender is not listed on this website, please provide the Financial Aid Office with your lender’s name and contact information. Once you begin the loan application, the Application Disclosure provides general information about your loan. If your loan requires a cosigner, your cosigner should complete all relevant portions online. You may need to provide your cosigner with your application number for reference purposes.

After Applying

Watch For An Email Or Letter From Your Lender

This letter should include instructions for the next steps regarding your application.

Complete The Applicant Self-Certification Form

This form may be available online, sent via email as an attachment, or sent via ground service through the United States Postal Service. Review the applicant self-certification form instructional PDF for additional guidance in filling out the form.

Read Your Approval Disclosure

This disclosure offers information on specific loan terms that will not change for at least 30 days. Like the form mentioned above, it may be made available to you online, as an attachment to an email, or sent via U.S. postal service.

Stay In Contact With CCA & Your Lender

Once all required paperwork is received, including the self-certification form, your lender is expected to contact the college to verify you need financial assistance to pay for tuition and other education-related expenses.

It can take up to 48 hours for CCA to provide the lender with the requested information.

Watch for the Final Disclosure that provides information for canceling the loan as well as updated cost information.

After a mandatory cancellation period (required by law), the lender sends the loan funds to CCA, where they are applied to the student’s CCA student account.