A new program in Iowa is paying off student loans for thousands of teachers, but there's a catch: those who take advantage of the program have to stay in state and teach subjects in shortage areas, such as math and science. The new program, called the Iowa Student Loan Teacher Educational Loan Forgiveness Program, was announced by Gov. Tom Vilsack. It comes amid a nationwide teacher shortage.
"So many states today are looking for creative ways to attract young people into the teaching profession," Vilsack said.
Qualifying teachers who apply this school year can receive up to $9,000 in loan forgiveness over five years. However, those who also qualify for existing state and federal programs and agree to teach both in shortage areas and in low-income schools may receive up to $30,500 in loan forgiveness over five years.
The new program will allow Iowa to gain a more competitive edge in recruiting teachers and making sure they don't leave within a few years.
"We're hopeful this will make a real impact on their decision-making," said Steve McCullough, Chief Executive Officer of Iowa Student Loan. "We're really looking to try to (encourage) new teachers to [...] decide to stay in Iowa after graduation."
But getting teachers to decide to teach in the critical shortage areas may prove to be an obstacle.
"Teaching is a passion. You have to love what you do," said Erin Puhl, 20, of Le Mars. "You can be good at chemistry or math—I am good at them—but I don't necessarily love them. I like English a lot. It has to be something that you want to do. You don't want to just go into it because they're going to pay off all your loans."
The program is being created with money generated through interest by Iowa Student Loan. As a non-profit, the corporation is required to use that money to benefit students.
Iowa ranks 41st in the nation for its average teacher salary, according to the National Education Association. Iowa's 2004-05 average teacher salary of $39,284 was $8,524 below the national average of $47,808.
Article Title : New Loan Forgiveness Program For Teachers
Comment not found for this article.
Share this story:
EdFed introduces… Awareness… Learnal
At, EdFed, we proudly introduce 'articles on student loans' and 'Learnal - the journal to learn from', our free newsletter on student loan management, which is sure to keep you informed of the latest events and happenings in the student loan market. To receive your copy of the above just use the RSS feed below and add this to your "My Yahoo", blogs, newstickers, and other similar channels accepting distributable content.
Click here to sign up for our Weekly Newswire now!
How EdFed Helped others!
Thank you for your help deciphering the code that is student loans. I was totally lost until I talked to one of your Loan Representatives, They were very helpful and saved me $254.77 a month on my private student loans. Thank you so much EdFed. - Robert K. South Bend, IN
Student Loan Consolidation Info - How to Choose the Right Loan Company
The Career Resources column is presented by Granted, America's leading job search engine dedicated to getting people jobs.
Education is one of the most basic right of any human, but with the increase in prices and the costs involved in education this has made these rights turn into a privilege which very few can enjoy. Any normal person today in the whole of United States has to take an education loan at one point of time to pay for their education fees.