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Federal Perkins and Nursing Loan Programs

Niagara University has partnered with Heartland ECSI to service Perkins and Nursing Loans. Borrowers will receive communications from Heartland ECSI on behalf of Niagara University. The Perkins Loan and the Nursing Loan both require initial loan processing upon receiving the loan and exit counseling prior to graduation or leaving the university. It is also important to understand the terms and repayment of your loan to avoid defaulting.

How to Find Your Loan Information

You can access your account online at https://heartland.ecsi.net/

  Through the Heartland ECSI website, you will be able to:

  • Make credit card and automatic check payments
  • Verify when payments have been received
  • Enroll in electronic billing
  • Update your address and phone information
  • Obtain loan payoff amounts
  • Download forms to request a forbearance or deferment on your account

Toll Free: 1-888-549-3274

If you need immediate assistance please utilize the Live Chat function at https://heartland.ecsi.net/

Mailing Address:

ECSI
1200 Cherrington Parkway
Coraopolis, PA 15108

Loan Repayment and Defaults

The university remains your loan holder after you graduate, but ECSI will send you bills, process your payments and address your customer service needs. Please be sure to keep both ECSI and the university informed about any changes to your name, address, phone number or email.

Defaulting on a Loan

You must make payments on your loan even if you do not receive a bill or repayment notice. Immediately contact ECSI to discuss repayment plan options and find out if you're eligible for a deferment or forbearance. Skipping or postponing your payments could result in defaulting on your loan.

If you fail to make your payments, the consequences could be serious.

  • Your loan may be turned over to an outside collections agency.
  • You may lose your deferment, cancellation, and forbearance options.
  • You may not be eligible for further federal or institutional financial aid.
  • Your school academic records may be withheld.
  • Your loan will be reported as delinquent to credit bureaus, which will damage your credit score.
  • Your total debt may increase due to late fees, additional interest, collections feeds, court costs, or attorney's fees.
  • Your state individual tax refund may be claimed to help pay off your delinquent loan balance.
  • Your loan could be accelerated so the entirety of the loan is due immediately.

In school with Federal Perkins Loan

The Federal Perkins Loans program has been terminated by the federal government no further awards can be made.   

Federal Perkins Repayment

Once a student graduates or is no longer registered for six credit hours or more, the loan enters into repayment. Federal regulations require an exit interview be completed and the borrower will receive notification complete this requirement at https://heartland.ecsi.net

Federal Perkins has a fixed 5% interest rate and the grace period is nine months during which no interest accrues. Late penalties may be assessed if the borrower fails to remit a payment on time.  

Federal Perkins Loan Deferments

Unlimited Deferments

  • In School Deferments — If the borrower is enrolled half-time or more at an educational institute other than Niagara University, the Perkins Loan will be deferred with verification of enrollment.  
  • Armed Service (Military) - Unlimited deferment for Perkins Loans is available to Armed Forces Reservists and National Guard personnel called to active duty, and to regular military personnel assigned to duty stations other than their normal stations, due to war, military operation, or national emergency.

Limited Deferments

Additional deferments are available with a maximum of 36 months for the term of the loan:          

  • Economic Hardship
  • Unemployment
  • Forbearance

To request one of the limited deferments please contact ECSI at 1-888-549-3274 or visit https://heartland.ecsi.net/ to download the appropriate forms.

Federal Perkins Loan Rehabilitation

Seriously delinquent Federal Perkins Loans may be rehabilitated. After 9 consecutive monthly payments your account is considered current and reported to credit bureaus and to National Student Loan Database (NSLDS) as such. You regain eligibility for Title IV Financial Aid and the balance of any deferment or cancellation benefits associated with your promissory note. For more information, contact ECSI at 1-888-549-3274 or visit https://heartland.ecsi.net/   

Additional information on repayment options may be found at http://studentaid.ed.gov/repay-loans/default/get-out.

Federal Nursing Loan Repayment

Once a student graduates or is no longer registered at least part time in a Nursing program, the loan enters into repayment. Federal regulations require an exit interview be completed and the borrower will receive notification complete this requirement at https://heartland.ecsi.net

Federal Nursing Loans have a fixed 5 percent interest rate and the initial grace period is 9 months during which no interest accrues. Late penalties may be assessed if the borrower fails to remit a payment on time.  

Federal Nursing Loan Deferments

  • In School Deferments - If you are at least a half-time student in a nursing program you can defer your loan. Deferments do not happen automatically. You must follow up with or Niagara University to ensure your deferment is processed. You will need to have the Registrar's Office at your school complete an enrollment verification to certify your enrollment. It must state that you are a Nursing major enrolled at least half-time.
  • Forbearance - Forbearance is a temporary postponement of payments, and can be granted to any borrower experiencing financial difficulty. During the forbearance period, interest continues to accrue monthly. Nursing loan borrowers should make arrangements to pay the interest monthly. Forbearance can be granted for periods up to one year at a time. Borrowers must request forbearance in writing, stating the reason for the forbearance and provide supporting documentation. 
  • Military/Uniformed Service - Deferment can be granted for a maximum of three years while the borrower is on active duty with the Military or is a member of a uniformed service, including NOAAC and the Public Health Service. Please note that there is a combined three year maximum for service in a uniformed service and the Peace Corps.
  • Peace Corps - Deferment can be granted for a maximum of three years while the borrower is a member of the Peace Corps Volunteer Service. Please note that there is a combined three year maximum for service in a uniformed service and the Peace Corps.

To request one of the limited deferments please contact ECSI at 1-888-549-3274 or visit https://heartland.ecsi.net/ to download the appropriate forms.