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College Loans

Graduate Student Loans for the Next Generation of Leaders

Pay for your master's, doctoral, or professional degree with or without a cosigner. Parents, grandparents, guardians, and sponsors can also explore our parent student loans.

Check your rate without impacting your credit score.

Your graduate school loan options with Ascent

Cover up to 100% of your graduate school tuition and school-related expenses with an Ascent private graduate student loan (up to $400,000). Explore your graduate school loan options – non-cosigned options available.

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Graduate Student Loan Benefits

Ascent provides more opportunities for you and your family to apply for graduate student loans with or without a cosigner, or our parent student loans, as well as these additional benefits:

Affordable - Choose between fixed or variable interest rates.
Bigger Discounts - 0.25% automatic debit discount for Ascent's Credit-Based Loans. Discount Terms & Conditions
More Repayment Terms - 5, 7, 10, 12, 15, and 20-year terms (depending on the graduate loans you choose).
Cash Back - 1% Cash Back Reward upon graduation.
Flexible Options - Start payments up to 9-months after graduation, and if you need to make lower payments after graduation, consider our Progressive Repayment option.
Tips & Resources - Ascent offers tips and resources that go beyond student loans to help you thrive in school and after graduation.
Build Credit In Your Own Name - Apply for Ascent’s Non-Cosigned Credit-Based Loan, or apply to release your cosigner after 12 payments and meeting other criteria.
No Fees - No application, origination, or disbursement fees AND there's no penalty if you pay off your loan early.
Fast & Easy - Check your pre-qualified rates in minutes without impacting your credit score.
24/7 Access With AscentConnect - Stay up to date with your student loan and make payments using our AscentConnect mobile app. Download it today from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

How to get your graduate student loan

You’ve already put a lot of work into preparing for graduate school. Getting the financing you need shouldn’t stop you now. We’ve streamlined our application process so you can get your funds without getting a headache.

  • Satelite
    Step 1

    Submit your pre-qualification

    We ask you to provide important information such as your name, address, date of birth, the school you’re applying to, and employment information. If you’re applying with a cosigner, they’ll also enter their information.

  • Astronaut
    Step 2

    Customize your loan details

    Once your completed loan application is approved, you’ll be able to view your loan details and select the loan terms that work best for you.

  • Clipboard
    Step 3

    Complete any open loan tasks in your Ascent portal

    After you choose your loan terms, complete any loan application tasks in your Ascent portal.

  • Moneybag
    Step 4

    We pay the school

    When your portal tasks are complete, we send your loan for school certification. Once certified, we’ll disburse your loan directly to the school.

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More ways to pay for graduate school with Ascent

Ascent offers additional ways for you to earn money throughout the year, even if you don’t have a loan with us. Expand your possibilities with our benefits.

What are others saying about Ascent?

Frequently asked questions about grad school

We have answers.

Ascent is an award-winning lender, committed to revolutionizing how students pay for higher education at colleges and coding bootcamps. Ascent empowers students from all economic backgrounds and disciplines (including DACA students) to maximize the return on their education through their Bright Futures Engine. To set students up for success, we incorporate financial wellness into our application process (the ONLY lender to require this) and offer exclusive benefits for students like the opportunity to qualify for a loan without a cosigner (for undergraduate juniors and seniors), 1% cash back, no fees, and over $80,000 in scholarships awarded every year.
Ascent’s credit decisioning criteria is proprietary and subject to change, but you can check what rates you pre-qualify for in just four (4) steps without impacting your credit score. We consider credit history and several other factors including, but not limited to, credit score.

Ascent considers several factors which may include creditworthiness, school, program, GPA, and cost of attendance.

Ascent Graduate Student Loans are for graduate students that are at least half-time enrolled in a degree program at an eligible institution.

Students applying without a cosigner must be U.S. citizens, have U.S. permanent resident status, or have DACA status. Students that are not U.S. citizens or U.S. permanent residents may apply with a credit-worthy cosigner that is a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident.

Yes. A student who is not a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident or has Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) status may apply with a creditworthy cosigner who is a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident.

Non-U.S. citizens are required to upload the following documentation to verify identity as applicable to their individual resident status:

  1. U.S. Permanent Resident Aliens: Permanent Resident Card (USCIS form I‐551); or
  2. Non-Permanent Resident Aliens (temporary residents): Valid visa – acceptable forms: F-1; J-1, M-1; E-1; H-1; L-1; G series; TN-1; TN-2; OR I-20 Form (pages 1 & 2 signed) AND Unexpired Passport from the country of origin; and,

In addition to 1. or 2. above, applicants must upload the following:

  1. Unexpired foreign passport; and
  2. A copy of a government-issued document or identification that includes your national identification number. NOTE – For countries that include the national identification number on the passport, confirmation therein is sufficient.
  3. DACA status: Documentation from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security / U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that indicates DACA status that does not expire before the end of the enrollment period for which the loan is being requested.
  4. Form I-797, Notice of Action and unexpired passport from country of origin from an eligible Temporary Protected Status country from this list:

NOTE: The option to apply to release the cosigner after making twelve (12) consecutive full principal and interest payments on-time or an equivalent prepayment amount and meeting other eligibility criteria. is only available to student borrowers that are U.S. citizens or have U.S. permanent resident status or DACA status. (See FAQ, “Can I eventually remove the cosigner from my loan?”)

Yes. Ascent gives away over $80,000 in scholarships every year. Enter for your chance to win our Shining Stars Scholarship and Community Champions Scholarship in 3 easy steps – no essay required.
The maximum loan amount for Ascent student loans is limited to the total cost of attendance for one full academic year, minus any financial aid, as certified by your school. Keep in mind that your school may certify your loan for less than the amount that you requested.
Minimum: $2,001
Maximum (aggregate): $200,000 for Undergraduate Loans; $400,000 for Graduate Loans
Maximum for the academic year:
    $400,000 for Graduate Credit-Based Loans

Your interest rate on the loan is the cost you pay to borrow the money. Your monthly payment is based on the interest rate for your total loan balance. You can choose between a fixed rate or a variable rate.

A fixed-rate means your interest rate will not increase or decrease while you are making monthly payments until your loan is paid in full. It will stay the same for the life of the loan.

A variable-rate means your actual interest rate could be lower or higher during your loan term than the rate you are given while completing the loan application.

Choosing a fixed rate versus a variable rate is entirely up to you but be sure to do your research beforehand on what will be best fit for your journey to financial wellness.

With federal graduate student loans, you borrow money directly from the Department of Education. To apply for a federal graduate student loan, you need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application by visiting:

Private graduate student loans help fill the gap between your college expenses, including books, school supplies, rent, groceries, parking, gas, and anything else not covered by FAFSA or scholarships. Ascent offers flexible options to help you manage your monthly payments as you enter repayment.

Yes, it’s possible to get a grad school loan without a cosigner if you meet the requirements – you must be a U.S. citizen, U.S. permanent resident, or have DACA status, have an income of at least 24,000 annually, and have at least 2 years of credit history, as well as meet a minimum credit score. The credit score required for a student loan varies, but you can easily check your rates and whether you need a cosigner or not.

When we send your loan disbursement, it’ll go directly to your school first. Your grad school will apply the loan to your tuition, then send any leftover funds to you.

You can use these other funds for your books, study supplies, or even rent and groceries.

Don’t see your question? Check our FAQ page.

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Contact us for help with graduate school loans

If you have questions or concerns about your graduate student loan application, don’t hesitate to contact Ascent. We’re available to assist you and provide clarification on the loan application process, as well as any additional information you need to help make your decision.

Fill out our contact form to reach our 100% U.S. based Ascent team.

1Restrictions apply, see

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*Annual Percentage Rate; See rates and repayment examples