MPower Finance or Ascent Funding;  Student Loan Comparison

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When you are looking for a way to fund your university education, a student loan provides you with a way out. Often an overlooked option since most students need more knowledge on how to get a student loan or the best platform to get one. Understanding what student loan is, is essential as we compare MPower Finance and Ascent Funding. These are two of the most popular student loan options. Understanding their features will help you make the best decisions for your household.

Current Stats: 

MPower Finance Student Loan

MPower Finance was founded in 2014 by Michael Davis and Manu Smadja who were inspired by the difficulty of paying for their university tuition. Since then, MPower builds its reputation by becoming the first official loan partner of Harvard University. In 2017, MPower announces that they received and approved about $ 150 million in student loan applications. They go on to work on simplifying the loan application process for international students who wish to study in the United States of America. 

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In 2018, they launch their Canadian international loan program, which involves 12 universities. MPower reports over $1 billion in loan applications since its inception 

Note that India, Nigeria, China, Brazil, and Ghana are the top countries that makeup about 50% of MPower globally. Additionally, MPower student loans stand to attain quality education, gender equality, industry, innovation, and infrastructure, and reduce inequalities.

Ascent Funding

Ascent Funding is a private loan company that provides loans for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as coding boot camps. It creates an avenue where student loans can be accessible to students who may not qualify for other financial aid. Therefore, this means that they cater to individuals who have no credit history or are international students. 

Ascent was awarded the Private Student Loan by Forbes in 2021 for its part in revolutionizing payment for colleges and bootcamps. Additionally, they empower students from all disciplines and backgrounds. 

Furthermore, they offer over $72,000 per year in loans as well as exclusive benefits for international students. 

Ease Of Application Process

MPower Finance Application Process 

The application process for the MPower student loan is done online, and you can click here to get started! However, you must select all the academic periods that you will need to fund.

  1. You must first complete the eligibility check to see if you meet MPower’s basic eligibility requirements. 
  2. Then, if you meet the requirements, you can start processing your application. 

Note that you have the option to save your application at some point and come back later.

Finally, if your application is already online, you can log in to complete it. Furthermore, those who need to request additional funds from their approved amount, just need to click “Request my funding.”

Ascent Funding Application Process

To apply for an Ascent Funding loan, you must follow the steps below: 

#1. Check your eligibility. The Ascent platform has a tool that applicants can use to check if they are eligible for a loan or not. The tool has a feature that can also give you hints about the rates and terms that fit your application. 

#2. Pick a loan. After finding the right loan option that suits you, you can complete the whole application. But you must provide information like;

  • Name 
  • Social Security Number (SSN)
  • Information regarding your income
  • Employer details 
  • Once all the details are reviewed, you will get an update after two days.

#3. Wait for the loan certification. If Ascent has approved your application, they will send your information to the school where you applied for certification. After which, the university can make adjustments, and Acsnet can contact you with an update on your agreement. 

#4. Sign the agreement. It’s now your turn to review the terms and conditions attached to the loan agreement and sign it. Note that Ascent will make the payments to your university directly. 

Eligibility Conditions 

MPower Eligibility Conditions

To be eligible for the MPower Student Loan, you must be an undergraduate or a graduate within 2 years of graduating, or you are about to begin a 1 or 2-year program. 

For international students; 

  • you may be a DACA recipient (which is a program that delays the deportation of children who come into the US without documents)
  • you may be a citizen of the United States of America
  • you may be a refugee or an asylum-seeker. 

Ascent Eligibility Conditions 

To qualify for an Ascent student loan; 

  • you must have a cosigner. 
  • you and your cosigner must have at least two years of credit history 
  • you both must earn at least $24,000 per year. 

Note that Ascent student loans are available too;

  • U.S. citizens,
  • permanent residents,
  • DACA students (which is a program that delays the deportation of children that come into the US without documents)
  • and international students. 

However, international students must have a co-signer who is a citizen and permanent resident.

Furthermore, for borrowers who do not have any credit history or a co-signer, you can make use of the outcome-based loan. This option is determined by factors like: 

  • your school, 
  • your degree program, 
  • the projected graduation date, 
  • your GPA and the cost of attendance.

Supported Programs

MPower Supported Programs

Eligible Programs include:








Post-Graduate Dental Certificates


Harvard Business School’s Online CORe

Ineligible Programs include:

Certificates/Licenses – except for Post-Graduate Dental Certificates

English Language Prerequisites

Exam Prep

Boot camps – except for CORe

Pilot Training

Ascent Supported Programs

Ascent Funding Student Loans support the following programs; 

1. Business (business administration, accounting, finance, marketing, and management)

2. Engineering: (mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, civil engineering, and computer engineering)

3. Health Sciences: (nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy)

4. Law

5. Liberal Arts: (English, history, political science, and philosophy)

6. STEM: These are degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields, like mathematics, computer science, ICT, and biology.

7. Vocational Programs: (HVAC training, welding, cosmetology, and other similar programs).

Supported Schools

MPower Supported Schools

Click the link here to check out the lists of schools that MPower supports. 

Ascent Funding Supported Schools

Click the link here to check out the lists of schools that Ascent Funding supports. 

Supported Study Destinations

The MPower Finance program supports the top 400+ colleges and universities in North America (majorly the United States and Canada). While the Ascent Funding is eligible for international students in the USA alone. 

Eligible Countries

You may be eligible for the MPower student loan if you are an undergraduate or graduate student within 2 years of graduating or about to begin a 1-year or 2-year program. Additionally, international students, DACA recipients, U.S. citizens, refugees, or asylum-seekers from any country are eligible.

For the Ascent Funding student loan, international students from any country can apply and be granted the loan as long as the university they apply to is in the USA. 

Interest Rates (Variable Or Fixed)

The MPower interest rates are: 

  • Fixed-rate loans: 7.99%-13.99% APR
  • Variable-rate loans: 5.00%-11.50% APR. 

The Ascent Funding interest rates for undergraduates: 

  • Fixed interest loan rates: 3.75%-12.08% APR
  • Variable interest loans: 2.24%-11.00% APR

The Ascent Funding interest rates for graduates: 

  • Fixed interest loan rates: 4.25%-12.98% APR
  • Variable interest loans: 2.62%-11.38% APR

Disbursement Of Funds

MPower disburses funds directly to your university. Additionally, you can see your disbursement schedule after signing your loan documents. While Ascent Funding also disburses the loan directly to the university. Note that this is for the payment of your tuition, fees, and accommodation,

Repayment Term

MPower Repayment Terms 

For the MPower Student Loan, repayments can begin 45 days after loan disbursement. However, the loan can begin to accrue interest after graduation with an additional grace period of six months.

Ascent Funding Repayment Terms

The Ascent Funding loan has a repayment plan of over five, seven, 10, 12, or 15 years from credit-based loans. While their outcome-based loans have three repayment options which are: 

  • Interest-only. For this option, you only make payments while in school, and after graduation, you can make full payments when your nine-month grace period is over. 
  • Deferred payments. You can choose to make no payments until after graduating and your nine-month grace period is over. 
  • $25 payments. You can make $25 payments monthly while you are still in the university. 

Contact EdXtra For Your Loan Application Support 

At EdXtra, we understand that to build an inclusive global economy, education should be based on the potential for value creation.

Through our global education lending partners, we now help and support African students to fund their graduate education in the US, Canada, or UK. Note that you don’t need a Collateral or a Cosigner.

Are you an African graduate student with future career potential? Edxtra Student Loan Support Service will provide you with the needed expert support and guidance to get student loans from our global lending partners to study at leading global universities.

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  • Okechukwu Liberty is a graduate of Mass Communication and a content writer for AfterSchoolAfrica. He is dedicated to researching scholarship and empowerment opportunities to students looking to study abroad.

    Content Research Writer