California Dream Loans

The California (CA) Dream Loan is borrowed money you must repay with interest. The CA Dream Loan is a subsidized loan program for undergraduate and graduate students with a valid CA Dream Act application and a valid AB540 affidavit or “U” Visa on file with San Jose State University. You must attend at least half time (6 or more units per semester) in order to receive the CA Dream Loan. 

Thumbnail of What is the California DREAM Loan Program?

Interest Rate, Deferment, and Grace Period

  • Interest rate for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2022: 4.99%
  • Interest rate for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2021: 3.73%
  • Interest rate for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2020: 2.75%
  • Interest rate for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2018: 5.05%
  • Interest rate for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2017:  4.45%

The interest rate for the CA Dream Loan corresponds with the interest rate on Federal Direct Subsidized loans and is subject to change for new loans annually. The CA Dream Loan does not accrue interest while enrolled at least half time, during periods of approved deferment, and during the 6-month grace period before entering repayment. Borrowers will be responsible for the interest charged at all other times. 

Repayment of Loans

California Dream Loans are set up to be repaid in monthly installments over a 10-year period and have a minimum payment of $50 a month. Borrowers can pay off loans earlier without penalty. Repayment begins at the end of a 6-month grace period. The grace period begins once you graduate, leave school, or enroll less than half time.  

Income-Based Repayment Option

CA Dream Loan borrowers have a standard repayment and income-based repayment plan available. For more information visit the ECSI website. Under Download Forms, search for California State University (Dream Loans).

Loan Limits

The CA Dream Loan is subject to annual, semester, and aggregate limits set by the state legislature, the CSU Chancellor’s Office, and SJSU. The annual loan limit is $4,000 and the semester limit is generally $2,000. The aggregate limit of $20,000 is the maximum that can be borrowed from the CA Dream Loan program at SJSU. 

Eligibility for the CA Dream Loan

Because funds are limited, you will be notified by the Financial Aid Office if you meet the eligibility criteria for the CA Dream Loan. The application process will be explained in emails sent to your SJSU email account, and in the To Do List items in MySJSU.

You may decline the loan offer or accept less than what is offered to you, but funds are limited, and you may not be able to increase your loan at a later time. Students who accept the CA Dream Loan must complete a promissory note and entrance counseling.

If you fail to complete all the required steps to receive your loan disbursement by the assigned deadline, we may cancel the loan offer. Funds are limited, and you may not be awarded the funds again at a later date.

Please note: Receipt of funds in one year does not guarantee availability or receipt of funds in subsequent years.