The California Dream Loan authorized by the SB1210 is a low-interest subsidized loan for AB540 students with financial need who meet all other financial aid eligibility requirements.
The Loan Process
If you are eligible, the Dream Loan will be included as part of your academic year financial aid package. You can view your financial aid package in CalCentral. If you decide to borrow the Dream Loan, you need to complete the following processes.
To receive the Dream Loan at UC Berkeley, please complete the required processes by the following deadlines: Attending Fall-only: November 30 Attending Fall/Spring or Spring-Only: April 30 Please note: 1. You will be able to begin the required online process for the Dream Loan after you receive the email from Heartland ECSI, starting August 1. 2. In order to receive a reimbursement from this loan before the end of fall term, whether or not you will be attending spring term, all requirements must be completed by November 30. Requirements completed after November 30 will result in refunds issued in January. 3. Dream Loan processing will be suspended between December 9 and January 2. If you accept the loan during this period, you will be able to begin and complete the online process after January 2.
WHAT YOU NEED TO DO:
Step 1. Accept your loan on Cal Central. You can only accept or decline this loan once online (via CalCentral ). If you miss the opportunity, or need to accept additional loan, please email email@example.com with your full student ID and the loan program in the subject line.
Step 2. 1 to 2 business days after you accept your loan, you will receive an email from Heartland ECSI advising you to complete the required online process (Master Promissory Note, entrance loan counseling and Truth In Lending Agreement documents).
The email will contain a Heartland PIN that will be required for successful login and authentication. Please wait to receive this email before proceeding to Steps 3 and 4. If you try to complete the following steps before getting the email notice from Heartland ECSI, you might not be able to login or you might have to redo the whole online process when Heartland ECSI has your file ready. Check all email folders, including your spam folder, for this email.
Step 3. After receiving the email described in Step 2, complete the Master Promissory Note/entrance loan counseling (combined with the Truth In Lending Agreement documents) at https://www.ecsi.net/promuc1/.
California Dream Act Applicants: please use your 9-digit California Dream Act ID number instead of your Social Security number to log into the website.
Be sure to use the date of birth that is reflected on CalCentral to log into the website.
websiteNote: Your identifying information must match the information provided on CalCentral.
Step 4. Select the promissory note/entrance loan counseling process to proceed. This process consists of the Master Promissory Note, entrance loan counseling (a small multiple choice quiz) and Truth In Lending Agreement documents (includes references). Once you have completed the process online, Heartland ECSI will send the electronic data to UC Berkeley after the mandatory rescission period (about 3 business days after the online process is completed) ends; your loan requirement checklist will be updated after we receive this data.
CALIFORNIA DREAM ACT APPLICANTS:
Berkeley uses your 9-digit California Dream Act ID number, instead of a Social Security number, to identify your records for the Berkeley Loan. The ID number was provided to you on your Application Confirmation Page. This number begins with 3 or 4 zeroes, and is 9 digits long.
Note: If you enter a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Social Security number, the database may not locate your record and prevent you from completing the process.
1. When asked to enter your Social Security number (SSN) on your Entrance Inteview Login page, enter your California Dream Act ID Number.
2. You will be asked to authenticate using a PIN. Please reference your Heartland ECSI email for the Heartland PIN to continue. Be sure to check all folders in your Berkeley email account to locate the Heartland ECSI email. If you cannot locate the email but it has been a few days since you have accepted your California Dream Loan via CalCentral, you can contact ECSI (live chat through the website or by phone at 1-888-549-3274). Note:
Note: You must complete the online process (Master Promissory Note, entrance loan counseling and truth in lending agreement documents) successfully in order for UC Berkeley to receive a confirmation from Heartland ECSI that you have completed the process. You will be asked to complete the whole online process again if it is completed without authentication (Heartland PIN required) via the Heartland ECSI website. We do not accept the paper master promissory notes for this loan. If you forgot your California Dream Act ID number, log into the Cal Dream Act website and obtain your California Dream Act ID number.
3. If you are unable to complete the online process or require assistance, please contact Heartland ECSI via website
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER YOU DO YOUR PART:
Berkeley will receive an electronic confirmation from Heartland ECSI only after all of the required processes are complete and authenticated (Master Promissory Note, entrance loan counseling and truth in lending agreement documents) and the mandatory 3 business day rescission period is over.
The Loan Requirement checklist will be updated to "complete" within 1-2 business days after UC Berkeley has received the confirmation of completion from Heartland ECSI.
The loan will disburse to your student billing account within 1-2 business days later, if you meet all other eligibility criteria.
WHERE YOUR FUNDS GO:
Your loan disburses to your student billing account in CalCentral and pays for any outstanding charges for the current academic year.
If there are no outstanding charges on your student billing account when the loan is paid, or if your loan disbursement is larger than your total balance, you will receive a refund.
If you are eligible to receive a refund, you will receive notification from Billing and Payment Services.
Interest accrual and repayment of the Dream Loan begin 6 months after you leave school or any time you drop below half time enrollment.
The standard repayment period is 10 years.
The annual loan maximum is $4,000 with an aggregate maximum of $20,000.
Borrowers are subject to credit reporting.
UC Berkeley is your lender. You will make your payments to Berkeley's contracted loan servicer, ECSI.
Before leaving school or graduating, be sure to complete your Exit Loan Counseling.
Keep your contact information up-to-date with UC Berkeley and with ECSI so that you receive important information about your repayment.
Toward the end of your 6-month grace period, you should receive information about beginning repayment. If you have not received anything at the beginning of the 6th month of your grace period, contact Berkeley at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cal Student Central is the destination for student inquiries related to financial aid, fees and billing, disbursements, registration, and enrollment.
Cal Student Central
120 Sproul Hall
Monday – Friday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
If you are in repayment and have questions, please contact email@example.com.