Have An MBA Student Loan Question? Ask Cory, Our Resident Expert

Cory Pollock is co-president of M7 Financial

Cory Pollock is co-president of M7 Financial

Cory Pollock is co-founder of M7 Financial, a firm focused on the careers and student loan requirements of students and alumni. Prior to M7 Financial, for ten years Cory was an Investment Analyst and Portfolio Manager with JPMorgan Asset Management’s high yield team that managed more than $30 billion in assets primarily invested in credit related products such as loans. Before JPMorgan, Cory was a fixed income Investment Banker with Banc of America Securities.

Cory has significant expertise relating to loans and credit. In fact, he recently co-authored the Student Loan (Reduction) Primer For MBA Students. Cory also has a passion for helping students and alumni understand all the different alternatives with respect to financing a degree.

We are very pleased that Cory has agreed to answer student loan related questions at Poets&Quants. Just fire away in the comment section below! Want to better understand your financing alternatives? Concerned about about costly origination fees? Not entirely certain about the difference between variable and fixed rate loans? Not sure about the advantages and disadvantages of federal student loans relative to private student loan?

Cory is here to address all your MBA loan queries.

  • Noman Tahir

    HI Cory
    I am a US resident (not citizen) and I got my US green card few months ago.
    Though my credit score is 695, I do not have sufficient credit history.
    I am planning on doing part time MBA which offers no scholarship and I am relying 100% on student loan

    Do you think I can obtain student loan to cover 100% of the program cost (around $150).
    My wife is US citizen and I can add her as co-signer


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  • Confused

    Hi Cory!

    I appreciate that you take out time to answer questions here 🙂
    I am a little confused about the average financial aid displayed on the university websites.
    Is this amount a one-time offer only for the first year? Or when universities say the average aid is 25k, it means 25k per year with the scholarship amount being renewed the following year – so I can consider it as 50k towards the two-year cost?

    Another question, How much time can students realistically give per week to working part-time in top MBA programs? Is it practical to work part-time or do freelance projects to earn some money to possibly cover living expenses?


  • Cory Pollock

    I don’t know the answer to that one. A word of caution about the averages on the B-school websites. They may not be very good guidance at an individual level. The actual amount for each individual can be significantly higher/lower then the average. I think that opening up a constructive dialogue with your target schools is the best way to get guidance on these issues.

  • SmartPoorGirl

    Thank you Cory, I will be sure to look into it 🙂
    Another question, I see a lot of forte fellowships too. Based on your experience, What percentage of female candidates are probably being offered these kind of fellowships and scholarships by B-schools. I see the average aid on the B-school websites, but I was wondering if this is higher for women since schools are trying to attract female candidates at the moment.

    Thank you John, for posting this here 🙂

  • Cory Pollock

    If you are an American you should consider both federal government loans and private loans.
    Federal government loans, unlike private loans, are typically not credit based loans. Private loans are credit based and you can enhance your probability of receiving a private loan by having a cosigner (typically a parent, spouse or person close to you). There are many different options for private loans. If you would like more information about private loans I recommend M7 Financial’s free MBA student budget planning session. You can sign up here: https://www.m7financial.com/student-budget-planning-session/

  • Cory Pollock

    I recommend that the 2 of you meet with your school’s financial aid office and discuss all the alternatives available based on your unique circumstances.

  • Cory Pollock

    I suggest reaching out to your target schools and ask them about your eligibility for different forms of financial aid, including waiving the application fee.

    As an American you should consider both federal government and private loans that would cover 100% of your “cost of attendance”. The cost of attendance is provided by the program and is typically easy to find on the program’s website (sometimes it is called a student budget). It is intended to cover tuition and an allowance for living expenses while in the program, although many find this living allowance to be modest.

    Hope this is helpful and good luck with the applications!

  • Here’s one that just came in for you Cory:

    I am an early-career candidate. I am an American currently working in a developing nation, and my income is good where I am, but very low in terms of dollars, when converted. Since I’m a recent graduate I have almost no savings. I think I may have a strong profile despite the age, but financial aid will definitely factor in my decision to attend. As a US citizen I guess I am eligible for several fellowships.

    In your experience, which schools provide the most need-based aid? I know there are merit-scholarships too, but I think I am just at class average in terms of statistics of test scores and GPA for M7 schools.

    I can’t seem to decide where to apply due to this restriction and even the cost of applying is a financial burden for me at this moment!


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