LYNCHBURG, Va. – Tens of thousands of public service workers may now be eligible to have their student loan debt wiped clean.
Whether you served on the battlefield or in the classroom, countless people are facing serious student debt, including Amy Poindexter from Lynchburg.
After graduating with a secondary education degree from Liberty College in 2012, she walked out with a $90,000 bill.
Then she got her master’s degree last year from the University of Lynchburg and now she is looking at paying back about $120,000.
“At this rate paying on the minimum income base payment plan without any forgiveness, I will be well into my forties before I can pay them off,” she said. “So, I probably have another 15 years.”
Recently, the Biden administration announced temporary changes that will allow thousands of public service workers to erase their loan debt.
Giving people like Poindexter a chance.
“It would be great for me personally,” she said. “But I do wonder what it would do to the country as a whole.”
To bail out 22,000 people, it will cost about $1.7 billion.
But the Virginia Poverty Law Center Executive Director Jay Speer said the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program was a promise made in 2007 and the government needs to fulfill that promise.
As a nonprofit, even they feel the pressure during the hiring process.
“We have trouble hiring sometimes because they have such high student loans they can’t afford to take a lower salary,” Speer said. “But if they can get their loan forgiven after 10 years they may be able to take it on.”
Speer advises people to visit the Federal Student Aid website to determine if they are eligible for the program.
Some borrowers may have till the end of the month to submit a waiver.