Minnesota Office of Higher Education Completes $375 million Bond Sale to Support Student Loan Program
Contact: Sandy Connolly, Director of Communications
Office of Higher Education
The Minnesota Office of Higher Education (OHE) successfully completed the sale of $375 million of variable rate revenue bonds to provide additional funding for student loans from the SELF Loan program, which has provided low-interest loans to students since 1985. The sale of these bonds enables OHE to restructure a portion of its debt and generate new capital to meet the continuing demand for student loans from the SELF Loan program.
"The SELF Loan is a more affordable option for students who need some level of borrowing to complete their postsecondary education," said Larry Pogemiller, OHE director. "This successful bond sale will allow us to keep SELF Loan interest rates and terms competitive."
The SELF program operates at no cost to the state. Funding for SELF Loans is provided by revenue bond proceeds, investment earnings and student loan repayments from borrowers. The SELF Loan program provided $85 million of loans for 14,000 students in the fiscal year ended June 30, 2012.
SELF Loans are available to Minnesota students attending eligible postsecondary institutions within or outside Minnesota and to non-residents attending eligible postsecondary institutions in Minnesota. There are no minimum or maximum income thresholds and no application fees for the SELF Loan program. Students pay only interest on their SELF Loan while in school.
The variable rate bond sale was underwritten and will be remarketed by RBC Capital Markets, LLC with Wells Fargo Bank serving as the trustee. Letter of Credit liquidity support for the bond issue was provided by Royal Bank of Canada. Springsted Incorporated, Public Sector Advisors served as financial advisor to the Office of Higher Education.
The Minnesota Office of Higher Education is a cabinet-level state agency providing students with financial aid programs and information to help them gain access to postsecondary education. In addition to the SELF Loan program, the agency administers a large need-based state grant program that supplements the Federal Pell Grant program. The agency also oversees tuition reciprocity programs, Minnesota's 529 college savings program, institutional licensing and early college awareness initiatives. In addition, the agency serves as the state's clearinghouse for data, research and analysis on postsecondary enrollment, financial aid, finance and trends.
For information about the SELF Loan program, contact the financial aid office at the college you attend or are considering attending, or contact the Minnesota Office of Higher Education at (800) 657-3866 or visit www.selfloan.org.