If you’re a Texas resident with a heavy student loan burden, you may be feeling the financial stress as you begin or continue in your chosen career. Luckily, along with federal program options, you have access to student loan forgiveness programs specifically for Texas dwellers. Below you’ll find several options for student loan forgiveness in Texas.
Student loan forgiveness: Texas
Many of the student loan forgiveness and repayment programs in Texas are aimed at assisting health care professionals and educators, but there are also opportunities for other professions.
Keep in mind that programs available now may not be available in the future, because funding can always be suspended. That said, if funding does go away, it may be reinstated at a later date. You can find out more about several Texas forgiveness programs by visiting the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board website.
1. Physician Education Loan Repayment Program
2. Math and Science Scholars Loan Repayment Program
3. Texas Student Loan Repayment Assistance Program (lawyers)
4. Loan Repayment Program for Mental Health Professionals
5. Nursing Faculty Loan Repayment Assistance Program
6. Teach for Texas Loan Repayment Assistance
7. Peace Officer Loan Repayment Assistance Program
8. Loan repayment assistance through your school
You can get up to $180,000 over a four-year period to help you pay off debt incurred while becoming a doctor — if you agree to practice for four years in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) or meet a minimum requirement for providing services to those enrolled in the Texas Women’s Health Program or Medicaid. Applications are accepted quarterly, and service periods are renewed each year. To receive the full amount, you need to become certified in one of the following specialties, either before or during your service period:
- Family medicine
- Internal medicine
- Obstetrics and gynecology
- You must hold a physician license from the Texas Medical Board.
- You must agree to complete four consecutive service periods in an HPSA or a qualifying correctional facility.
- You must be eligible to take the exam for board certification in the first, second or third service periods if you are not yet board certified.
- You must not be currently fulfilling service periods for other scholarships or loan repayment programs.
Program status: Active as of publication. Visit their website for additional information on the program.
This program is available for math and science teachers who are willing to commit four years to teaching in Texas public schools. The maximum award offered is $5,000.
- You must have completed a program (undergraduate or graduate) in math or science.
- You must have finished a degree with at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA.
- You must be certified to teach science or math in a public school in Texas.
- You must have a contract to teach full-time in a classroom at a Title I school.
- You cannot be receiving any other teacher loan forgiveness.
Program status: Active as of publication. Visit the website for additional information.
This Texas student loan repayment program is offered through the Texas Access to Justice Foundation and is geared toward lawyers. It’s funded by the State Bar of Texas. Lawyers can apply on a quarterly basis if they work helping low-income citizens. Awards of up to $6,000 are given annually, and then forgiven at the end of a 12-month period, as long as the recipient maintains eligibility. Money is awarded on an as-needed basis, based on your situation and whether you’re participating in other aid programs.
- You must work in a Texas legal aid program.
- You must be a lawyer recognized by the State Bar of Texas.
- You must have been licensed to practice law for fewer than 10 years.
- You must earn $80,000 or less annually.
Program status: Active as of publication. Read the current list of eligible employers for this program.
Aggregate awards ranging from $10,000 to $160,000 are available over the course of five years, depending on your mental health job. Money is given based on how many years you remain in the program. You get 10% of the total in the first year and receive a greater percentage each successive year until you reach the maximum.
Here are the types of mental health professionals eligible and the amounts offered for each:
- Psychiatrists: up to $160,000
- Psychologists: up to $80,000
- Licensed clinical social workers (doctoral degree): up to $80,000
- Licensed professional counselors (doctoral degree): up to $80,000
- Advanced practice nurses (board-certified in mental health or psychiatric nursing): Up to $60,000
- Licensed professional counselors, clinical social workers and licensed marriage and family therapists: Up to $40,000
- $10,000 for licensed chemical dependency counselors with associates degrees
- You must work in a Mental Health Professional Shortage Area (MHPSA) or a correctional facility associated with the Texas Juvenile Justice Department or Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
- You must serve people enrolled in the Children’s Health Insurance Program and/or Medicaid.
- You must agree to provide five consecutive years of service.
- Psychiatrists must be eligible to take a board certification exam.
Program status: At publication time, the program was expected to post application information in March 2020. Check in on their website.
If you have a nursing degree and teach as a faculty member in an approved Texas nursing program, you could receive as much as $7,000 for up to five years. You will need to provide your lender information, though, because this program pays down your loans directly.
- You must have completed a master’s or doctoral nursing degree.
- You must be licensed by the Texas Board of Nursing.
- You must be employed as a full-time faculty member in an eligible nursing program for at least one year.
- You must not be in default with your student loans.
Program status: Active as of publication. Check the website for more information.
If you’re willing to teach a specialty identified as a shortage area, you might be able to access an award amount of up to $2,500. Designated shortage areas may change annually and include English as a second language, special education, mathematics and computer science. Per the Texas Education Agency, you will need to contact your loan servicer regarding the amount of forgiveness for which you are eligible.
- You must teach at a public school in Texas (preschool, primary or secondary).
- You must have certification in a field identified as having a shortage.
- You must be willing to teach full-time at a school that has been identified as experiencing a teacher shortage.
Program status: Active as of publication. Check the website for more information.
If you are a full-time peace officer in Texas as of or after Sept. 1, 2019, you may be eligible for up to $20,000 in loan forgiveness over a five-year period.
- You must be sure you meet the required definition of peace offer, as outlined here.
- You must have earned at least 60 semester credit hours at an eligible Texas institution before becoming a peace offer.
- You must be currently employed.
Program status: Active as of now. Check the website for further information.
Some Texas colleges and universities offer their own loan forgiveness programs. Call your alma mater to find out if these programs are available. For example, the University of Texas at Austin offers a loan assistance program for its law school graduates.
Don’t forget about federal loan forgiveness programs
No matter where you live — including Texas — you can access federal loan forgiveness programs. The federal government offers programs aimed to help teachers, health care professionals, veterans and public servants pay off their student loans.
Double-check the provisions, though. Depending on your situation and the loan forgiveness program, you might not be able to get help from both state and federal funding sources at the same time. Carefully compare programs to figure out which course of action is likely to benefit you the most.
Rebecca Stropoli contributed to this report.
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 9 lenders of 2021!
|Lender||Variable APR||Eligible Degrees|
|1.88% – 6.15%1||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.88% – 5.64%2||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.50% – 6.85%3||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.89% – 5.90%4||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.25% – 6.39%5||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.88% – 5.64%6||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.90% – 5.25%7||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.39% – 6.01%||Undergrad |
|2.13% – 5.25%8||Undergrad & Graduate|
|Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
1 Important Disclosures for Splash Financial.
Splash Financial Disclosures
Terms and Conditions apply. Splash reserves the right to modify or discontinue products and benefits at any time without notice. Rates and terms are also subject to change at any time without notice. Offers are subject to credit approval. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet applicable underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. Lowest rates are reserved for the highest qualified borrowers. If approved, your actual rate will be within a range of rates and will depend on a variety of factors, including term of loan, a responsible financial history, income and other factors. Refinancing or consolidating private and federal student loans may not be the right decision for everyone. Federal loans carry special benefits not available for loans made through Splash Financial, for example, public service loan forgiveness and economic hardship programs, fee waivers and rebates on the principal, which may not be accessible to you after you refinance. The rates displayed may include a 0.25% autopay discount
The information you provide to us is an inquiry to determine whether we or our lenders can make a loan offer that meets your needs. If we or any of our lending partners has an available loan offer for you, you will be invited to submit a loan application to the lender for its review. We do not guarantee that you will receive any loan offers or that your loan application will be approved. Offers are subject to credit approval and are available only to U.S. citizens or permanent residents who meet applicable underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers will receive the lowest rates, which are available to the most qualified borrowers. Participating lenders, rates and terms are subject to change at any time without notice.
To check the rates and terms you qualify for, Splash Financial conducts a soft credit pull that will not affect your credit score. However, if you choose a product and continue your application, the lender will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit pull and may affect your credit.
Splash Financial and our lending partners reserve the right to modify or discontinue products and benefits at any time without notice. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen and meet our lending partner’s underwriting requirements. Lowest rates are reserved for the highest qualified borrowers. This information is current as of June 1, 2021.
2 Rate range above includes optional 0.25% Auto Pay discount. Important Disclosures for Earnest.
Interest Rate Disclosure
Actual rate and available repayment terms will vary based on your income. Fixed rates range from 2.59% APR to 5.79% APR (excludes 0.25% Auto Pay discount). Variable rates range from 1.88% APR to 5.64% APR (excludes 0.25% Auto Pay discount). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 36% (the maximum allowable for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate student loan refinance loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 2.04% and 5.8% to the one month LIBOR. Earnest rate ranges are current as of 6/8/2021, and are subject to change based on market conditions.
Auto Pay Discount Disclosure
You can take advantage of the Auto Pay interest rate reduction by setting up and maintaining active and automatic ACH withdrawal of your loan payment. The interest rate reduction for Auto Pay will be available only while your loan is enrolled in Auto Pay. Interest rate incentives for utilizing Auto Pay may not be combined with certain private student loan repayment programs that also offer an interest rate reduction. For multi-party loans, only one party may enroll in Auto Pay.
Student Loan Refinancing Loan Cost Examples
These examples provide estimates based on payments beginning immediately upon loan disbursement. Variable APR: A $10,000 loan with a 20-year term (240 monthly payments of $72) and a 5.89% APR would result in a total estimated payment amount of $17,042.39. For a variable loan, after your starting rate is set, your rate will then vary with the market. Fixed APR: A $10,000 loan with a 20-year term (240 monthly payments of $72) and a 6.04% APR would result in a total estimated payment amount of $17,249.77. Your actual repayment terms may vary.Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest. com/terms-of-service, e-mail us at [email protected], or call 888-601-2801 for more information on our student loan refinance product.
Earnest Loans are made by Earnest Operations LLC or One American Bank, Member FDIC. Earnest Operations LLC, NMLS #1204917. 535 Mission St., Suite 1663, San Francisco, CA 94105. California Financing Law License 6054788. Visit earnest.com/licenses for a full list of licensed states. For California residents (Student Loan Refinance Only): Loans will be arranged or made pursuant to a California Financing Law License.
One American Bank, 515 S. Minnesota Ave, Sioux Falls, SD 57104. Earnest loans are serviced by Earnest Operations LLC with support from Navient Solutions LLC (NMLS #212430). One American Bank and Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
© 2021 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved.
3 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
Offered terms are subject to change and state law restriction. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900), NMLS Consumer Access. If you are approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your credit profile, your application, the loan term selected and will be within the ranges of rates shown. All Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) displayed assume borrowers enroll in auto pay and account for the 0.25% reduction in interest rate. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 0.15% effective Jan 1, 2021 and may increase after consummation.
4 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
All credit products are subject to credit approval.
Laurel Road began originating student loans in 2013 and has since helped thousands of professionals with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees consolidate and refinance more than $4 billion in federal and private school loans. Laurel Road also offers a suite of online graduate school loan products and personal loans that help simplify lending through customized technology and personalized service. In April 2019, Laurel Road was acquired by KeyBank, one of the nation’s largest bank-based financial services companies. Laurel Road is a brand of KeyBank National Association offering online lending products in all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. All loans are provided by KeyBank National Association, a nationally chartered bank. Member FDIC. For more information, visit www.laurelroad.com.
As used throughout these Terms & Conditions, the term “Lender” refers to KeyBank National Association and its affiliates, agents, guaranty insurers, investors, assigns, and successors in interest.
Assumptions: Repayment examples above assume a loan amount of $10,000 with repayment beginning immediately following disbursement. Repayment examples do not include the 0.25% AutoPay Discount.
Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): This term represents the actual cost of financing to the borrower over the life of the loan expressed as a yearly rate.
Interest Rate: A simple annual rate that is applied to an unpaid balance.
Variable Rates: The current index for variable rate loans is derived from the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) and changes in the LIBOR index may cause your monthly payment to increase. Borrowers who take out a term of 5, 7, or 10 years will have a maximum interest rate of 9%, those who take out a 15 or 20-year variable loan will have a maximum interest rate of 10%.
KEYBANK NATIONAL ASSOCIATION RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.
This information is current as of April 29, 2021. Information and rates are subject to change without notice.
5 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
Fixed rates from 2.74% APR to 6.74% APR (with autopay). Variable rates from 2.25% APR to 6.39% APR (with autopay). All variable rates are based on the 1-month LIBOR and may increase after consummation if LIBOR increases; see more at SoFi.com/legal/#1. If approved for a loan your rate will depend on a variety of factors such as your credit profile, your application and your selected loan terms. Your rate will be within the ranges of rates listed above. Lowest rates reserved for the most creditworthy borrowers. SoFi refinance loans are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that the federal loan program offers, or may become available, such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment or PAYE. SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Lending Corp. or an affiliate (dba SoFi), a lender licensed by the Department of Financial Protection and Innovation under the California Financing Law, license #6054612; NMLS #1121636 (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org). Additional terms and conditions apply; see SoFi.com/eligibility for details. SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.
6 Important Disclosures for Navient.
7 Important Disclosures for LendKey.
Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
Subject to floor rate and may require the automatic payments be made from a checking or savings account with the lender. The rate reduction will be removed and the rate will be increased by 0.25% upon any cancellation or failed collection attempt of the automatic payment and will be suspended during any period of deferment or forbearance. As a result, during the forbearance or suspension period, and/or if the automatic payment is canceled, any increase will take the form of higher payments. The lowest advertised variable APR is only available for loan terms of 5 years and is reserved for applicants with FICO scores of at least 810.
As of 04/07/2021 student loan refinancing rates range from 1.90% APR – 5.25% Variable APR with AutoPay and 2.95% APR – 7.63% Fixed APR with AutoPay.
8 Important Disclosures for PenFed.
Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is the cost of credit calculating the interest rate, loan amount, repayment term and the timing of payments. Fixed Rates range from 2.89%-4.78% APR and Variable Rates range from 2.13%-5.25% APR. Both Fixed and Variable Rates will vary based on application terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. These rates are subject to additional terms and conditions and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. For Variable Rate student loans, the rate will never exceed 9.00% for 5 year and 8 year loans and 10.00% for 12 and 15 years loans (the maximum allowable for this loan). Minimum variable rate will be 2.00%. These rates are subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change.