7 Careers that Qualify for Student Loan Forgiveness

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    Public service student loan forgiveness

    If you're looking for student loan forgiveness, check out these great careers that come with that serious benefit. Are any on your dream job list?

    You, like many of your peers, probably dwell on your college years from time to time, and we sincerely hope that you have fond memories of them.

    Because, with all of that student loan debt you're probably carrying around (the effects of which are mitigated by only a couple of scholarships you managed to land), you're going to need those memories to get through most nights.

    All hope, however, is not lost; student loan forgiveness might just be in your future. You need only choose your career wisely.

    That said, here are 7 careers that offer student loan forgiveness as a benefit:

    Lawyers

    We're all well aware of the fact that studying law is time-consuming and somewhat expensive in the long run.

    Although everyone touts careers in law as rewarding despite the amount of time and money that must be put into them, the truth is that not every lawyer is going to be rich; like everyone else, many lawyers must live economically after finishing their studies.

    But they provide a public service that is so essential to our way of life, which is probably why they qualify for student loan forgiveness programs.

    The United States Department of Justice, for instance, actually offers individuals who practice law a chance to participate in the Attorney Student Loan Repayment Program.

    The program is updated annually, and it has "an annual open season for attorneys to request participation" in the program, so make sure that you keep an eye on the deadline if you're thinking of applying.

    There are benefits to taking on a job as a teacher, one of them being student loan forgiveness.

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    Veterinarians

    Veterinarians are apparently in short supply, and while this shortage is unfortunate for all of the poor animals who desperately need treatment right now, it definitely has its benefits for all of the veterinarians who are currently saddled with student debt.

    veterinarian student loan forgiveness

    In order to address this shortage, the United States Department of Agriculture now offers veterinarians a chance to participate in the The Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program.

    The program pays "up to $25,000 each year towards qualified educational loans of eligible veterinarians who agree to serve in a NIFA [National Institute of Food and Agriculture] designated veterinarian shortage situation for a period of three years."

    Like the Attorney Student Loan Repayment Program, the Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program has an application process and official deadlines that must be met.

    Teachers

    Some people say that there is little reward in teaching; educators spend years working towards their degrees in order to pass on their knowledge only to be met with low wages and the occasional misbehaving child.

    Even so, there are some benefits to taking on a job as a teacher, one of them being the student loan forgiveness programs teachers are eligible for.

    According to U.S. News, loan forgiveness is an integral feature of many of the loans that teachers accept. If, however, the loans don't have built-in forgiveness, there are programs which allow teachers to have a portion of their debt forgiven in exchange for teaching in a teacher shortage area.

    The Teacher Student Loan Forgiveness Program is one such program.

    Health Professionals

    Health professionals, like lawyers, donate a lot of their time and money to acquiring skill sets that will benefit the general public.

    For this reason, no one should be surprised to find that they qualify for some type of student loan forgiveness.

    The type of forgiveness a health professional qualifies for can depend on multiple factors, one of which is the professional's economic background.

    student loan forgiveness careers

    The Faculty Loan Repayment Program, for instance, promises to "repay loans [up to $40,000] to those interested in pursuing a career as a faculty member at a health professions school." In order to qualify, you must "come from a disadvantaged background, based on environmental and/or economic factors."

    If you are, on the other hand, a medical professional who doesn't come from a disadvantaged background, you might consider taking a look at what the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services has to offer.

    Just as in the case of a couple of the other programs listed here, there are application processes and deadlines that you should be aware of.

    Volunteers

    To be fair, volunteering doesn't technically constitute as a career option.

    Still, if you can afford not to work for extended periods of time, you might be able to volunteer your way to student loan forgiveness.

    While there are several volunteer organizations, the Peace Corps and Americorps are two of the most renowned organizations that allow people to work off their debt.

    Although you won't be paid handsomely for your volunteer work, you'll usually be provided with a bit of pocket money every so often and free housing for the duration of your program.

    And there is one last caveat: You'll have to relocate, though just how far from home you'll end up is completely dependent on which program you participate in.

    Social Workers

    You've probably been expecting to see this career on this list. After all, social workers take on student debt knowing full well that their day jobs probably won't help them pay off their loans.

    Luckily, their sacrifices haven't gone unnoticed.

    The National Association of Social Workers promotes "loan forgiveness for social workers as part of its on-going work to improve working conditions, salaries, and other benefits."

    As the association's site points out, however, the association itself does not "determine loan forgiveness eligibility" or "disperse loan forgiveness funds". It instead offers scholarships and loan repayment programs.

    Military Personnel

    military student loan forgiveness

    Putting your life on the line for the sake of protecting millions of strangers is nothing short of admirable. And, fortunately, the government agrees.

    There are actually a few military student loan forgiveness options available to military personnel who wish to slash their debt, one of which is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.

    This program stipulates that "members of the military who have been employed by the military or a qualifying public service job for the last 10 years may have their federal student loans fully discharged."

    Note that military personnel are not the only ones who benefit from this program; jobs such as "law enforcement" and "early childhood education" are also considered public service jobs.

    Student Loan Forgiveness For Others

    If you happen to be someone who just isn't interested in going down any of the above career paths, loan forgiveness might not be in the stars for you, but there are still other options available to you.

    Forbearance, for example, is just one of them.

    If you are not sure whether or not you qualify for loan forgiveness or forbearance, be sure to check with your loan service provider in order to explore all of your options.