Hi, I have 50,000 in loans from my previous degree and I still have yet to start nursing school! I am not willing to apply to nursing schools more than 40,000 just for that reason and I'm looking at much cheaper schools. Most of my loans are anywhere between a 10 year - 15 year plan, and I still had to pay a little over $450 a month. That is with interest rate avg. 4-5%. If you have a high interest rate, your loan can cost you more like $80,000 or more if it takes you 10 years to pay it all. Most people can't pay back earlier than that unless they live with their parents, have a supportive husband, etc. Because you'll still have pay rent, car loans, and other bills. I know it sucks, but it's still doable. You'll have loans for the rest of your life, whether it's a mortgage, car loan, or whatever. Just work a lot and live like you were still in school!!! (Cut coupons, take the bus, go to school for your haircuts, and don't buy unnecessary items). Maybe take a part time home health aide job or waitress job in addition to your regular job for the next few years.