NYS Licensed Social Worker Loan Forgiveness Program
The NYS Licensed Social Worker Loan Forgiveness Program is being offered to increase the number of licensed social workers working in critical human service areas in the following fields: health, mental health, substance abuse, aging, HIV/AIDS and child welfare or communities with multilingual needs.
- be legal residents of New York State for at least one year;
- be U.S. citizens or eligible noncitizens;
- be a social worker professionally licensed to practice in New York State;
- have an outstanding balance on an eligible student loan; and
- have at least one year of qualified service. Qualified service means full time employment as a licensed social worker in a critical human service area for at least 35 hours per week during the calendar year prior to their application.
Eligible Student Loans
Successful applicants must have outstanding balances for eligible student loan debt(s).
Eligible student loan debts include New York State or federal governmental loans, or loans made by commercial entities subject to governmental examination. It does not, however, include Parent PLUS loans, loans that may be canceled under any other program, private loans given, for example, by family or friends, or student loan debts paid by credit card.
Critical Human Service Areas
Applicants seeking Licensed Social Worker Loan Forgiveness Program awards must work in critical human service areas for a minimum of 35 hours per week during the calendar year preceding their application or payment. The designated critical human service areas are:
The maximum award under this program will be $26,000.00 or the applicant’s eligible student loan indebtedness at the time they apply, whichever is less. Awards will be paid in annual disbursements for each period of qualified service. Annual disbursements will be equal to $6,500 or their remaining loan indebtedness.
Note: Any Loan Forgiveness award payments received may have tax implications. A 1099 form will be issued by the NYS Office of the State Comptroller reflecting the total loan forgiveness payments received by the recipient for the year. Any questions regarding this should be directed to a tax professional or the NYS Department of Taxation and Finance.
The number of awards paid under this program is subject to available funding. First priority will be given to prior recipients seeking payment for qualified service. If there are more applicants than available funding, awards will be paid by lottery.
Licensed Social Worker Loan Forgiveness Program payments are available for up to four years of qualified service. Recipients may apply for payment under this program until the total amount awarded has been disbursed or funding is discontinued.
How to Apply
The deadline for the 2012 Series Licensed Social Worker Loan Forgiveness Program has passed.
Applications for the 2013 Series will be available in January 2014.
NOTE: Recipients do not have to submit another New York State Licensed Social Worker Loan Forgiveness Program Supplement once they have received this award.
In subsequent years, recipients must submit a payment application and verification of the qualified service for which they seek payment under this program by the deadlines set by HESC. Payment applications will be mailed to prior recipients at their address of record in January.
Please call the Scholarship Unit at 1-888-697-4372 with any questions regarding this program.