Depending on what type of loans you have, you may be offered a choice of repayment plans. Options may include standard, graduated, extended, or income-driven plans, as well as loan consolidation. Your selection will depend on your expected income once you leave MIT.
However, remember that the shorter your repayment period is, the lower your total interest payment will be over the life of your loan. Contact your loan servicer for more information on specific repayment options. For Direct Loans, the repayment options page from studentloans.gov is an additional resource.
Deferment, forbearance, and cancellation
If you’re having trouble making your loan repayments, you may be eligible for a deferment, forbearance, or cancellation. A deferment lets you temporarily stop making payments on your loan. A forbearance lets you make smaller payments or stop making payments on your loan for a specified period, or extends the time for making payments. A cancellation releases you from all or part of your obligation to repay your loan.
You must apply for and receive permission from your loan servicer(s) to obtain a deferment, forbearance, or cancellation, and must continue making loan repayments until each loan servicer notifies you that your request has been approved.
Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program
This program is intended to encourage individuals to enter and continue to work full time in a public service job. Under the program, borrowers may qualify for forgiveness of the remaining balance of their Direct Loans (including Stafford, PLUS, and Consolidation Loans) after making 120 qualifying payments on those loans while employed full time by certain public service employers. Please see the Public Service Loan Forgiveness page from Federal Student Aid for a full description of the program.
Refinancing loans through consolidation establishes a new loan with new terms and conditions for the combined balance of your original loans.
Consolidation is usually synonymous with federal consolidation, although some private lenders offer consolidation loans as well. Federal consolidation combines multiple eligible federal student loans with various repayment schedules into a new federal loan with a single monthly payment. However, if you take longer to repay your new consolidated loan, you’ll pay more interest over the life of the loan.
Check Federal Student Aid for the consolidation loan options available to you.