FAQs about Student Loan and Scholarship Program

Learn more about the Nathan and Sarah Klein Interest-Free Student Loan and our Lloyd and Morissa Parkans Scholarship.

March 11, 2021
Past scholarship recipients

FAQs about Student Loan and Scholarship Program

Learn more about the Nathan and Sarah Klein Interest-Free Student Loan and our Lloyd and Morissa Parkans Scholarship.

March 11, 2021
Sarah and Nathan Klein Interest-free Student Loans

Who is eligible to apply?  Local Jewish students with demonstrated financial need may educational and living expenses in college, graduate school or trade school.

How do I apply only for the interest-free student loan?  Complete and submit application by May 28, 2021; there is a $40 non-refundable application fee made payable to Jewish Family Service. Two co-signers are required, one co-signer can be one of your parents, the other co-signer can be a relative or friend. A required meeting will be scheduled in July with the applicant, both co-signers and our Senior Accounting Supervisor, Abbie Seher to determine eligibility. If eligible, at that time the applicant and co-signers will sign a binding contract/note.

What is the loan amount for the interest-free student loans?  Interest-free student loan amounts depend on the amount of funds available to distribute and the total number of eligible applicants.  The average loan amount is $7,000.

What is the process if I am granted an interest-free student loan? A check will be issued by August 1, 2021. Repayment will begin September 2021 - 10% of the original loan amount will be paid annually in equal monthly installments until graduation. Installments double or more after graduation, until paid off with a maximum 7-year repayment period. There is a $40 administrative fee due January 1st  each year the loan is in existence.

If I apply for the scholarship and do not receive it, can I still apply for a JFS interest-free student loan?  Our loan and scholarship programs run simultaneously; therefore, if a scholarship is not awarded, it is not possible to apply for an interest-free student loan this year.  However, an applicant can apply for an interest-free student loan through the Hebrew Free Loan Association.

Can I apply for more than one interest-free student loan?  A second loan for the same student cannot be obtained while a loan pay-off is in progress.


Morissa and Lloyd Parkans Scholarship

Who is eligible to apply?  Local Jewish students who are residents of the greater Houston area and U.S. citizens, and for whom these scholarship monies will mean the ability to attend college or higher education that will result in the ability to succeed in the future.  Higher education is defined as a four-year college, junior college or trade school, but does not include a graduate program.  The monies should be “last money in” or make a significant difference in the student’s ability to proceed with desired plans.

Can the scholarship be used for study abroad programs that provide college credit?  No, the scholarship funds are only for study within the U.S.

What is the scholarship amount?  The amount of the scholarship varies each year – the amount ranges from $5,000-$10,000.

Who should write my references, and what should be included? References should be from within the past year; preferred references come from a teacher, community leader or rabbi and address outstanding academic achievement, leadership, community involvement and admirable personal attributes. All references should be signed.

If I am awarded the scholarship, can I apply and receive it again? Yes

What should be included in my resume? Activities and awards related to academics, leadership, community service and employment.

Who selects the Parkans Scholarship recipients? A small committee of JFS board members and volunteers select two recipients. They review each aspect of your application including extra-curricular activities/community service, references, GPA, highlights from your interview and read your essay.

When will selected recipients be announced? Recipients and all applicants will be notified by July 15, 2021; a check will be issued by August 1, 2021.

General Information

Can I submit a copy of my transcript?

No, all transcripts (high school and college) must be official and come directly from the school or institution. Please request transcripts be sent to JFS Houston, C/O Adele Croft, 4131 S. Braeswood St., Houston, TX 77025.

How should I calculate my budget?

Many colleges and universities provide a guide for a budget however amounts vary significantly for items such as housing – make your budget as accurate as possible.

What additional documentation is needed if FASFA says Transferred from IRS?

If your FAFSA states on any line “Transferred from IRS," please provide amount(s) in separate schedule that designates line number equal to FAFSA as well as your most current W-2 and the W-2 reported on FAFSA.

Do I only list resources I plan to accept on my Budget Information?

No, please list all loans/scholarships/grants you have applied for – and accepted or denied. If a determination is pending, please state this on your application. Please be sure to provide documentation for each loan/scholarship or grant opportunity.

Can I apply for an interest-free loan and for the scholarship?

Yes, you may apply for an interest-free loan and the scholarship and potentially receive both.

When can I expect to hear if I have been awarded a loan or scholarship?

All recipients will be contacted by July 15, 2021.

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