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Illinois Community Bank Pledges Support to iHELP® Student Loan Program

First National Bank of Dieterich Joins iHELP as a Participating Bank in Illinois

Washington, D.C. (September 15, 2011)—First National Bank of Dieterich in Dieterich, Ill., is the latest member bank of the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) to commit loan capital to the iHELP® private student loan program.

“ICBA is pleased that the First National Bank of Dieterich has agreed to make a commitment to the iHELP student loan program in Illinois,” said Dan Clancy, ICBA executive vice president of services. “The iHELP private student loan program allows our nation’s community banks to provide ‘gap’ funding within their communities to deserving students and their families.”

iHELP, which was rolled out in the first quarter of 2010, is a simple, transparent and low-cost private lending program that is offered through local community banks to help their customers achieve their higher-education goals. iHELP was initially launched in South Dakota, home of the program’s administrator, the Student Loan Finance Corporation (SLFC), which provides ICBA community bank members with turnkey loan origination and servicing support for the program, and ReliaMax Surety, a South Dakota–domiciled  insurance company providing insurance for iHELP loans.  The iHELP program is now being rolled out nationwide.

“At a time when many families are struggling with reduced federal student aid, the iHELP program still allows students to achieve the dream of a higher education,” said William McDaniel, chairman of the Community Bank of Raymore and ICBA’s Bank Services Committee.

iHELP will hit its first full lending cycle this July through September and has 10 states processing loans for the current academic year.  These states include South Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Louisiana, Georgia and Colorado.

“First National Bank of Dieterich is excited to join the iHELP program so we can offer this loan program to help our local customers and communities throughout Illinois,” said Thomas A. Niebrugge, CEO of the First National Bank of Dieterich.  “iHELP will allow us to meet our customers’ educational funding needs locally and provide a secure investment for the bank.”

For more information about the iHELP private student loan program, contact Ann Anderson (303) 621-2533 or aanderson@ihelploan.com.