Let a VA Career Pay You Back for School with Loan Forgiveness

Let a VA Career Pay You Back for School with Loan Forgiveness

Trade your student debt for a promising career serving Veterans. If you’re looking for help repaying your student loans, you can qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness  (PSLF) program with a VA career.

By canceling loans after 10 years of public service, PSLF removes the burden of student debt on public servants and entices people to work in high-need fields. Because VA is a federal employer, new and existing VA workers with federal student loans may be eligible for this national loan forgiveness program.

Qualifying for the program

The PSLF program forgives your remaining loan balance after you have made 120 qualifying monthly payments under a qualifying student loan repayment plan while working full-time for certain employers, like VA.

Right now, the U.S. Department of Education has waived some requirements for applications submitted through Oct. 31, 2022, opening up loan forgiveness to more borrowers.

Still, though, you need qualifying employment to be considered, which is one of many reasons why you should consider a career at VA.

Investing in your future

Despite the short-term waiver that expands PSLF, the program is ongoing, which means that anyone looking for a career at VA can participate once they begin their employment.

But that’s not all VA has to offer. With our Education Debt Reduction Program (EDRP), VA employees with qualifying student loans who are in specific, difficult-to-recruit direct patient care positions may receive up to $200,000 over a five-year period.

And for those looking to continue their education, the Employee Incentive Scholarship Program (EISP) offers significant support. This program provides eligible VA employees with tax-free scholarships of up to $41,572 toward the cost of higher education, including tuition, registration fees and books. In return, you agree to work at VA for one to three years after you complete the program.

We offer some of the most comprehensive employee education benefits in the nation, and we work hard to ensure you have access to tools, benefits and training that provide the personal and professional growth needed to take your career to next level.

Work at VA

A job at VA could provide some relief from your student loans and be the next step on your journey to a fulfilling career.

How Nurses Can Fuel Their Futures by Setting and Achieving Financial Goals

How Nurses Can Fuel Their Futures by Setting and Achieving Financial Goals

Planning for the future can be difficult when you’re just starting your career. Especially with 70% of nurses experiencing burnout as of January 2021 , financial planning and goal setting probably isn’t a top priority. However, an important part of achieving future goals is by first setting and achieving financial goals. With some planning and consistent goal achievement, you’re on the way to taking control of your future. Not only is that the bigger picture, but you’ll also notice how healthy financial habits can affect your productivity and how succeeding in them can bring increased motivation throughout your nursing career and daily life. 

Ready to start preparing for your financial future? Here are a few steps to consider. 

Set your financial goals 

An important part of preparing for a successful future is by setting financial goals. On a basic level, financial goals are simply milestones that you set for your money and often relate to your personal and career goals. If you’re unsure, think about how you envision your life in the next 5 – 10 years. Buying a house, starting a family, going back to school, and moving to a new location are all common financial goals you’ll need to budget and save up for.  

In the goal-setting process, create both short and long-term objectives to set you on the path for success. Start with short-term goals that you can reach within the next few months to a year. This can include creating a monthly budget, cutting down on spending, or saving for a down payment on a house. When thinking about long-term financial goals, consider aspects that might be holding you back such as debt. With nurses having a median student loan debt of $40,000 to $54,999, repaying this money should be one of your top financial priorities as it can be a major roadblock to future goals.  

Whatever your financial goals may be, make sure they’re  S.M.A.R.T. – specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely. This framework will help clarify your ideas and ensure you have the proper resources and support to achieve them.  

Determine how you can meet these goals  

Meeting your financial goals is all about improvement. Whether it’s in your daily spending habits, your ability to save, or getting another nursing degree to expand your earning potential. As you grow in your nursing career and financial position, considering how you can improve your finances will increase your awareness of your goals and help you identify new ways to achieve them. 

For starters, it’s crucial to stay mindful and organized with your money. You may be surprised at how many unnecessary spending costs slip through the cracks each month such as buying coffee or lunch during your shifts. Small expenses like these can add up quickly, which is the last thing you want to see. To keep track of your spending, budgeting is key so you can determine how much money you can dedicate toward your goals. Budgeting may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it can help make your spending more transparent, so experiment and create a plan that works for you. The most common methods include the 50/30/20 budget, the envelope system, or simply using a budgeting app. Within your budget, you’ll be able to weigh the changes of your current income, expenses, emergency fund, and savings to stay on track. 

Factor in big investments 

Big investments undoubtedly have a significant impact on your life, both personally and financially. While larger purchases like a home, car, or college education all might be part of your long-term financial goals, it’s important to assess healthy and effective payment routes that won’t lead to further debt. 

Take into consideration a big investment such as your home. This might end up being the biggest asset you have to your name and can have many financial benefits. For instance, as a homeowner you have the ability to borrow money from your home in the form of an equity loan to fund other expenses or goals like paying off high-interest debt, jump starting a business, or funding your 401(k). With a lower interest rate than a personal loan or credit card, a home equity loan can be a wise financing opportunity for you to use in the future, which may make buying a home a larger priority in your financial goals.  

Overall, significant financial obligations require strategic financial planning, so consider your current reserves before introducing new ones. Doing so can help you reach your financial goals more quickly in the long run.  

Plan your financial future 

Setting financial goals is important because it gives your money purpose and encourages you to reach your dreams. Everyone’s situation is different. Take this advice and work it into your life as you see fit to gain the most fulfillment. It’s all a matter of reflection and practice. 

While you’re planning, focus on the steps to achieve your financial goals rather than the end goal itself. Reward yourself and along the way when you reach your goals to stay motivated. Remember: life happens, and it’s okay to get off track with your financial habits. The important step is to recognize your challenges and learn to bounce back. This way, you’ll be able to better fuel the success of your future.