woman at Graduation with her parents

Fact Sheet

Who We Are and What We Do

We're Great Lakes, a group of companies dedicated to doing what's right to help students access and complete higher education.

Our focus on working with students to help them succeed drives everything we do, in all aspects of our organization. Since 1967, our mission hasn't changed, but the way we deliver on it has.

Today, the U.S. Department of Education, lenders, colleges and universities, and community agencies value our experience in educational financing and choose to partner with us for our reliability, efficiency, innovation, and commitment to doing the right thing.

In doing right by students and for our partners, we enjoy great success. What makes us unique: proceeds from our operations as a privately-held company go to advancing our longstanding philanthropic mission of getting more students into and through college.

Our Philanthropy

We believe that everyone can benefit from higher education. Yet, we also know it's the students who are least likely to continue their education who have the most to gain.

Our philanthropy is targeted at getting more students into and through college—and specifically more students of color, students from low-income households, and those who are the first in their families to attend. All our grants focus on college preparation and success, because students who are well-equipped to face the academic, financial, and personal challenges of colleges are the most likely to graduate.

To learn more about our philanthropy, visit our Community Investments portal.

Our Partnerships to Help Students Succeed

Students and their families borrow money for college because it is an important investment in their future. While we don't make student loans, we work with all those involved in college funding—with the ultimate goal of helping students borrow responsibly, complete their education, and find repayment solutions that work for them. This is how we help protect their investment.

We provide reliable, effective tools and resources that simplify student loans and save time for students, financial aid professionals at colleges and universities across the country, the U.S. Department of Education, lenders, and others working with college funding.

Learn more about how Great Lakes partners with each of these groups.

News Releases

Great Lakes Donates $115,000 to 10 Adopted Schools in Local Communities

Great Lakes' ScholarNet for Private Loans More Widely Used Than Ever Before

Great Lakes Funding Development of Online Support Community for College Freshman Women

Great Lakes Shares Lessons Learned from Summer Melt Texting Initiative

Great Lakes Awards $525,000 in Anniversary Grants in Nine Communities Where Employees Live and Work

Completion Grants Remove an Obstacle for At-Risk Students Nearing Graduation

New Initiative Connects Remediation Reforms and Guided Pathways to Boost Student Success

Great Lakes Awards $1,000 Scholarships to 200 Ohio Apprentices with Financial Need

Great Lakes Awards $7.2 Million to Launch Emergency Grant Programs at Four-Year Colleges

Great Lakes Sparking Change in Scholarship Delivery

Montana Guaranteed Student Loan Program to Transfer Portfolio to Great Lakes

Statement from Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation & Affiliates Regarding Student Loan Collection Fee Policies

200 Wisconsin Apprentices with Financial Need Awarded $1,000 Scholarships from Great Lakes

Great Lakes Releases 2016 Philanthropy Report Highlighting $21.9 Million in Grants Awarded

Great Lakes Invites Four-Year Colleges to Apply for Successful Emergency Grant Program

USA Funds Transfers Ownership of Nation's Largest Guarantor to Great Lakes

Great Lakes Commits $2.1 Million to Help 16 Community Colleges Create Internship Programs for Low-Income Students

Great Lakes Commits $2.6 Million to Keep At-Risk Near-Completers on Track to Graduation

Blackhawk Technical College Students Borrow $700,000 Less, Regain Financial Aid Eligibility

Achieving the Dream to Enhance Coaching Services with $1 Million Great Lakes Grant

Great Lakes National Scholarship Awards Over $2 Million to Support College Access

Great Lakes Awards $1.5 Million to CCRC to Support Guided Pathways Reform in Ohio

Successful 'New Mathways Project' Expands into Arkansas to Increase Math Achievement

Great Lakes Career Ready Internship Grant Opportunity Now Open to
Two-Year Colleges


Study on Student-Faculty Interactions Finds Multi-Channel Communication is Key

Great Lakes Shares Lessons Learned from 2014-2015 Career Ready Internship Grant Partners

New Great Lakes Grant Opportunity Invites Applicants to Address Barriers Preventing Near-Completers from Earning Degrees

Student Loans of North Dakota to Transfer Portfolio to Great Lakes

Great Lakes Releases 2015 Philanthropy Report Detailing $28.5 Million in Commitments

200 Wisconsin Construction and Industrial Trade Apprentices Receive $1,000 Scholarships

Great Lakes Shares Best Practices from Three-Year Emergency Grant Program

Application Period for Great Lakes National Scholarship Begins February 15

Great Lakes Funds New Emergency Grants Shown to Boost Community and Technical College Completion

University of Pittsburgh Streamlines Private Student Loan Processing, Improves Student Service

Great Lakes' Free Tool Adds Early Engagement Outreach Campaigns for Schools

Great Lakes' Commitment to Producing More Undergraduate STEM Degrees Now Reaches $10.7 Million

Great Lakes Launches Updated Education Philanthropy Website

Great Lakes Commits Record $12 Million to Fund 7,000 New Paid Internships for College Students with Financial Need

Great Lakes CEO Accepts White House Invitation to Join the College Promise Campaign Advisory Board

200 Wisconsin Apprentices Will Earn $1,000 Scholarships to Purchase Tools for Their Trades

400 MPS Grads Eligible for $5 Million in College Scholarships from The Degree Project®

Great Lakes Introduces Newly Expanded Program to Increase Community College Graduation

Great Lakes Shares Results of Applicant and Grantee Perception Survey

100 Schools Using Great Lakes' Free Outreach Tool to Help Students by Connecting Them with Their Servicer

Great Lakes Commits $28.6 Million During 2014 to Promote College Access and Completion

Great Lakes Expands Grants for Colleges Committed to Making Internships More Equitable

Great Lakes Commits $4.2 Million to Prepare More Students for College Math & English

Great Lakes' Free Tool Helps Schools Improve Repayment Success for All Their Student Loan Borrowers