I Work at the Welfare Office and I’m Struggling With My College Loans. – Chantel

“Dear Steve,

Graduated from college 1996. started working for dept.of job&family service; A.K.A. welfare office 1996. student loans principle $12,000 and now owe $37,000. have been garnished since 2006. I’m broke. I make less money than when I started working. I have kids and bills. I’m drowning in debt. I live in Ohio.

how can I access some of these student loan forgiveness programs? who can I call, email, write or beg to?


Dear Chantel,

The good news is if these are government backed loans it seems the Income Based Repayment (IBR) program is for you. At least it could lower your payment if you qualify. The underlying issue is that your loan may need to be in good standing to be eligible. Check it out though.

If you are a social worker or hold a public service job you may be eligible for loan forgiveness after ten years of service.

You’d need to talk to your loan servicer and ask them about the The College Cost Reduction Act of 2007 loan forgiveness program.

The definition of what is a “public service” job is:

PUBLIC SERVICE JOB.—The term ‘public service job’ means—

(i) a full-time job in emergency management, government, military service, public safety, law enforcement, public health, public education (including early childhood education), social work in a public child or family service agency, public interest law services (including prosecution or public defense or legal advocacy in low-income communities at a nonprofit organization), public child care, public service for individuals with disabilities, public service for the elderly, public library sciences, school-based library sciences and other school-based services, or at an organization that is described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 and exempt from taxation under section 501(a) of such Code; or

(ii) teaching as a full-time faculty member at a Tribal College or University as defined in section 316(b) and other faculty teaching in high-needs areas, as determined by the Secretary.

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Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
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