PLEASE NOTE: Students must re-apply every year for financial aid (FAFSA and GSM paper application). There are separate loan applications for the summer.
1) Pay As You Earn and Income-Based Repayment Plan Option
Students choose a repayment plan for their federal loans when they do the online Exit Counseling towards the end of the last semester of attendance. Some borrowers may qualify for the new Pay As You Earn plan or the IBR plan for their federal (only) student loans.
To be eligible a student must show “partial hardship” in their debt to income ratio. You can review various repayment plans and check to see if you may be eligible on this federal link.
Detailed student loan payment information which includes the eligibility requirements of each plan and some examples of how a borrower’s monthly payment can be reduced are available on these links:
2) Public Service Loan Forgiveness Option
Some students may be eligible for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. It was created to encourage individuals to enter and continue to work full-time in public service jobs. Under this program, you may qualify for forgiveness of the remaining balance due on your eligible federal student loans after you have made 120 qualifying payments on loans under specific qualifying repayment plans while employed full-time by specific qualifying public service employers.
The term “public service organization” covers a broad range of employers, including any federal, state, or local government organization or agency and most charitable non-profit organizations.
Qualifying public service employment includes:
- Government – Federal, State, Local, Tribal
- A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization
- Emergency management, military service, public safety, law enforcement
- Public health
- Public education, public library sciences and other school-based services
- Public service for individuals with disabilities or the elderly
- AmeriCorps or the Peace Corps
The federal government has not yet established clarity beyond the information given on the website links below.
Go to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness fact sheet for information on the terms and conditions of the program and to understand what types of public service jobs qualify. Private (non-federal) educational loans cannot be included in this program. This public service fact sheet will give you all the information available at his time.
Students must reposition any federal loans that are not currently in Direct Lending if they want those loans to be eligible for possible forgiveness in the future. Repositioning loans from private lenders can be a complicated process which involves consolidation or reconsolidation of your loans. This web site will explain the consolidation process: http://loanconsolidation.ed.gov.
- To find out what kind of student loans you have, do the following two steps:
- Go to the National Student Loan Data System, www.nslds.ed.gov, to view all of your federal loans. You will need your federal PIN number (same as used for the FAFSA).
- Identify any federal loans listed that are held by private lenders including undergrad loans. Some federal loans could be held by private lenders such as CitiAssist, Sallie Mae, Chase, etc. You may consolidate these loans into Direct Lending for possible future forgiveness. (Your BU federal loans are already in Direct Lending). Reminder: Non-federal loans are not eligible.
- The Department of Education may develop an application form for Loan Forgiveness and will possibly require supporting documentation. You may need to verify your employment history so it is recommended that you keep documentation.
- Check the Direct Lending web site regularly for any updates or changes to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program or the fact sheet.
Checkout BU Smart Money 101 for information and tools to promote effective money management.