More and more often, it is common for students to take out multiple loans in order to pay for their college education. In today’s tough economy, many students and graduates are finding it difficult to remain current on their student loan repayment programs and are looking for a solution to their financial difficulty. Though refinancing and consolidating qualified loans is an excellent way to reduce debt and gain control of your financial holdings, consider eliminating your debt completely. There are several ways to qualify for federal student loan forgiveness, each often eradicating a portion, if not all, of your student loans.
Federal Student Loan Forgiveness Tips
There are five basic ways a graduate can qualify for federal student loan forgiveness: volunteering with qualifying programs, performing military service, teaching in specified communities, practicing medicine within certain areas, and by meeting various other miscellaneous criteria that appear within the forgiveness program.
- Volunteer Work – There are several volunteer organizations that offer varying degrees of federal student loan forgiveness in exchange for your time. Civil service programs such as AmeriCorps, the Peace Corps, and VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) all have programs available that will help eliminate your education debt while you provide much needed support and services to underprivileged individuals.
- Military Service – Many graduates enroll within a branch of the military; this has several benefits since it provides a much needed service to the country, provides the graduate with a reliable job and hands-on experience within their chosen field, and allows these graduates the opportunity to enroll in scholarship and tuition assistance programs that will provide federal student loan forgiveness assistance.
- Teaching – The education system has taken some hard blows with the economic recession and policy changes within government funding programs. Federal student loan forgiveness is available to teaching graduates that are willing to work in elementary and secondary schools that are mainly composed of low-income household students.
- Medical Practitioner – Several government programs offer federal student loan forgiveness to physicians and registered nurses that agree to work in low socioeconomic areas. Such programs are provided by the US Department of Health and Human Services and the US National Institutes of Health in an effort to provide medical services to areas in need of qualified professionals.
- Miscellaneous Avenues – Federal student loan forgiveness is available to more than just doctors, nurses, and teachers. Lawyers, veterinarians, law enforcement officers, and many other professionals have existing programs that will either eliminate or greatly reduce the amount of financial debt obtained while pursuing a degree.
Research and Investigate Available Programs
There are several ways to achieve complete or partial federal student loan forgiveness. Since most states have their own set of rules and qualification standards, it is important to be familiar with your state’s loan forgiveness regulations. Begin by contacting either your human resources officer available through your employer or researching the public service loan forgiveness programs available within your state. Depending upon your degree, the need for your skills or services, and the amount of time and effort you are willing to devout to the program, you could attain federal student loan forgiveness within a few years instead of decades.