Veterinarians who want to participate in the Veterinary Medince Loan Repayment Program can now apply to the USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture for help repyaing their student loans if they are willing to serve in areas where there is a lack of veterinarians.
In return for a commitment of three years of veterinary services in a designated veterinary shortage area, NIFA may repay up to $25,000 of student loan debt per year. Loan repayment benefits are limited to payments of the principal and interest on government and commercial loans received for the attendance at an accredited college of veterinary medicine resulting in a degree of Doctor of Veterinary Medicine or the equivalent. NIFA applications will be due June 30, 2010, and offers will be made by Sept. 30, 2010.
Major studies indicate significant and growing shortages of food supply veterinarians and veterinarians serving in certain other high priority specialty areas. A leading cause for this shortage is the heavy cost of four years of professional veterinary medical training, which can average between $130,000 and $140,000. Congress established the VMLRP as a way to remedy this growing need. For more information, please visit www.nifa.usda.gov.