Federal Student Aid thrusts out a hand to students not only through the grants it gives or functions as the mediator for them to be given. The office is helpful to students in need with the loans and work-study options it provides. Of course, like grants, there are criteria that students need to match to be eligible to apply for them, though not as strict as grants. Here is some basic information regarding the loans and work-study programs of Federal Student Aid.
Federal Student Aid lends money through a program called Direct Loan Program. As the name suggests, the loan is directly given to students in need of funding for undergraduate or graduate studies. Lending is made through post secondary educational institutions who have accepted to be part of this program. There are also loans available for parents and for students enrolled in professional degrees. There are subsidized and unsubsidized loans, as well as consolidation loans, all of which are channeled from the U.S. Treasury for funding purposes.
It is also possible to borrow money under another program: Federal Perkins Loans. Similar to the Direct Loan Program, undergraduate, graduate and professional degree students can benefit from these loans. Again like the Direct Loan Program, loans are made via educational institutions that participate. However, Federal Perkins Loans differ from the Direct Loan Program in that they are offered to students who are experiencing great financial difficulty. If you are not considered to be going through serious financial hardship, it would be recommended that you apply for the Direct Loan Program instead of Federal Perkins Loans.
Apart from loans, work-study programs also receive a high demand from students with financial need. This program offers students financial aid, but it also requires them to do something in return: working. Students accepted to the program start working whilst they are studying and students get paid for the work they do. The pay, however, depends on how much funding the student needs and how much money the student's school is allowed to allocate, as schools are in charge of managing this program. The benefit of the Work-Study Program is that in addition to being funded by the state, students start filling up their CV's while they are still continuing their studies. They get experiences which will do good to their future for sure. Participants of the Work-Study Program also learn how it feels to be awarded for what you do, and build a sense of responsibility. Therefore, from a professional and self developmental point of view, this program has more return to the student in the long-run than an ordinary grant, scholarship he or she can be awarded, or a loan to be paid back later.