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  1. The Current State of Nursing School and Student Debt In 2018, nursing students graduated with an average of $30,000 in nursing school loans, on top of an average of $30,000 of undergraduate debt. Nationally, this is part of a $1.6 trillion student debt bubble leaving young people paying off their education for 20+ years at the cost of important life milestones and their financial futures. People choose to become a nurse to help save lives, not to get saddled by life-long debt! Luckily, it doesn’t need to be this way thanks to an education funding model called an Income Share Agreement (ISA) that offers a way to limit payments to what graduates can afford at each point in their lives. What are ISAs? ISAs are agreements in which a student receives an upfront payment for tuition in return for paying a fixed percentage of their future income for a set number of years. To further protect against risk, they also feature minimum income thresholds before payment expectations kick in (usually around $30-$40k per year), as well as caps on the maximum amount that can be repaid. Beyond expanding access to programs, the model aligns students’ interests with ISA providers’. After all, these providers only succeed if their students do—a fact reflected by the member perks and career-coaching packages offered to customers for free. ISAs vs. Loans This appeal over traditional loans only becomes clearer when comparing the models more closely. While federal loans break down into Stafford and Grad PLUS options, Stafford loans are capped at $138,500 for both graduate and undergraduate schooling, and Grad PLUS loans require credit checks that could force young people with bad credit history or low income to find a co-signer—something Stride Funding’s ISAs never require. Adding to the burden, gaining relief for a federal student loan that one has fallen behind on is not always as easy as one may hope. For instance, in order to qualify for federal loans’ 25-year Extended Repayment Plan, graduates need to already have over $30,000 of outstanding debt, and interest will continue to accrue over the full 25 years under such a plan. How do ISAs Work for Nursing Students? Out of a handful of ISA providers, Stride Funding is a standout that focuses on healthcare professionals. Stride offers Income Share Agreements that allow students to finish payments in just 5 years, instead of federal loans’ 10 to 25 years. Their ISAs are also uniquely designed to support nursing career choices, offering webinars, resume workshops, and a community of fellow healthcare students from the moment you sign on. Stride gives unique attention to each ISA applicant to make sure he or she receives both an affordable education and the skills necessary to face the future. By taking the stress of repayment away with their flexibility, ISAs allow recent grads to focus on their patients and achieving life milestones like buying a car, planning a wedding, or buying a house. Now, nurses have the option to get a degree and focus on what’s truly important—caring for their patients. To learn more about how a Stride ISA can fund your nursing education, visit Stride Funding—you can apply in under a minute!
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