According to one source, more than 50% of students in Texas have outstanding student loan debt (with the average Texan’s student debt currently standing at a whopping $26,824). In light of that, the state government has introduced different Texas loan forgiveness programs over the years to help Texans pay off their debts. Continue reading to learn all about them.
What Qualifies You for Student Loan Forgiveness?
As of now, there are many active Texas loan forgiveness programs. The qualification/eligibility criteria for each program is different, and are based on factors such as academic programs attended, career, employment, etc. However, as far as the Public Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program is concerned, the requirements are the same for all states – you must make 120 consecutive monthly payments on a direct loan while working for a qualified employer.
Take a Look at Federal Student Loan Forgiveness Programs
To address and solve the current student loan debt crisis, Uncle Sam has different student loan forgiveness programs in place that you, as a Texan, can potentially qualify for.
Here’s a great resource to get all the information you need about some of these programs: Student Loan Forgiveness Programs.
Texas Student Loan Forgiveness Programs
Currently, the state of Texas has the following student loan forgiveness programs:
- Border County Doctoral Faculty Education Loan Repayment Program
- Loan Repayment Program for Speech-Language Pathologist and Audiologists
- Nursing Faculty Loan Repayment Assistance Program
- Physician Education Loan Repayment Program
- St. David’s Foundation Public Health Corps Loan Repayment Program
- Teach for Texas Loan Repayment Assistance Program
- Texas Student Loan Repayment Assistance Program
- Educational Loan Repayment Program for Employed by the Office of the Attorney General
Let’s dive into the specifics of all of them:
- Amount: Up to $5,000 per year (for 10 years)
- Description: There has always been a shortage of faculty with doctorate-level qualifications in institutions in counties bordering Mexico. The Border County Doctoral Faculty Education Loan Repayment program aims to attract and retain faculty members with doctoral degrees at these institutions.
- Requirements: To be eligible for this program, you must have received your doctoral degree on or after September 1, 1994. In addition, you must be currently working (and have been employed for at least 1 full academic year) at an eligible higher education institution in one of the Texan counties bordering Mexico.
- Program Information: Border County Doctoral Faculty Education Loan Repayment Program
- Amount:$6,000 to $9,000 per year (for up to 5 years)
- Description: The Loan Repayment Program for Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists is meant to tackle the critical shortage of licensed speech-language pathologists at public schools in Texas.
- Requirements: The first eligibility requirement is that you must have a graduate’s degree for a communicative disorders program. Secondly, you must either be employed as a full-time speech-language pathologist or audiologist at a public school in Texas, or as a doctoral faculty member at a higher education institution. Thirdly, you must be licensed by the Texas Board of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, in addition to some other requirements.
- Program Information: Loan Repayment Program for Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists
- Amount: Up to $7,000 yearly
- Description: Authorized by the Texas Legislature, the Nursing Faculty Loan Repayment Assistance Program aims at encouraging people to pursue nursing education programs and join institutions offering higher education as faculty.
- Requirements: There are three eligibility requirements for this program. First of all, you must be a holder of a master’s or a doctoral degree in nursing. Secondly, you must have a valid license that allows you to practice in the state of Texas. Last but not the least, you have to be employed at an eligible higher education institution.
- Program Information: Nursing Faculty Loan Repayment Assistance Program
- Amount: Up to $160,000 (over 4 years)
- Description: The Physician Education Loan Repayment Program (PELRP) provides incentives to doctors for working in a “Health Professional Shortage Area” (HPSA) or providing services to the Texas Women’s Health Program or Medicaid. Applications for this program are accepted on a quarterly basis.
- Requirements: To be eligible for his program, the applicant needs to have a full physician license from the Texas Medical Board (and be eligible for taking the board certification examination, in case they haven’t earned and/or maintained their certification). In addition, they must also serve 4 consecutive years in an HPSA or an eligible correctional facility, and provide direct patient in Medicaid and CHIP.
- Program Information: Physician Education Loan Repayment Program
- Amount: Up to $30,000
- Description: Currently, not being administered by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, the St. David’s Foundation Public Health Corps Loan Repayment Program disburses healthcare providers who practice at eligible sites in the five-county areas served by the St. David’s Foundation. Under this program, physicians and can receive up to $30,000 annually, for 4 years, whereas nurse practitioners and physician assistants can receive $15,000 per year.
- Requirements: First and foremost, you must be a legal resident of the US (or at least, be authorized to work in the US) and agree to practice at a site approved by the St. David’s Foundation for 4 years. In addition, you must hold an unrestricted physician’s, dentist’s, assistant’s, or nursing practitioner’s license (whichever may apply), from the relevant Texan board, and be eligible to take relevant examinations.
- Program Information: David’s Foundation Public Health Corps Loan Repayment Program
- Amount: Up to $2,500
- Description: Launched to recruit and retain classroom teachers to provide education in fields and geographical regions with a shortage of teachers, the Teach for Texas Loan Repayment Assistance Program (TFTLRAP) awards up to $2,500 to qualifying applicants.
- Requirements: The applicant must be specialized and teaching full-time in a designated field, or at a community/area, where there’s a shortage of qualified teachers, at the time of the application. A minimum of 1 year of teaching experience in the same field or community is also required.
- Program Information: Teach for Texas Loan Repayment Assistance Program
- Amount: Up to $4,800 yearly
- Description: Created in 2003, the Texas Student Loan Repayment Assistance Program provides student loan assistance to qualifying students. The program is meant to encourage students to pursue careers in legal aid, as there is a shortage of legal professionals in the field (mainly because of low salaries).
- Requirements: To be eligible for this program, the applicant must be working full-time at a legal aid program that’s funded by either the TAJF or the Legal Services Corporation, or a non-profit providing legal services to civilians, with at least 50% of services being provided for free to Texans with low income.
- Program Information: Texas Student Loan Repayment Assistance Program
- Amount: Up to $18,000
- Description: This program gives from the state of Texas an opportunity to receive a hefty amount in student loan repayments every year, as an incentive for working at the Office of the Attorney General (OAG).
- Requirements: You must be working as a permanent employee at the OAG. In addition, you must not be a political appointee and not be serving for other agencies.
- Program Information: Educational Loan Repayment Program for Employed by the Office of the Attorney General