ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Time is running out for federal student loan borrowers who have not had to pay on their loans since March 2020. Approximately 12% of all New Yorkers owe $91.9 billion in student loans with an average loan debt of $38,107, according to Education Data Initiative. For those with federal loans, payments will resume on May 1.

There are ways to modify or get a deferment on federal student loans but there are also programs offered by the New York Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC) that could eliminate student debt or at least give borrowers more time before they must start paying them back. HESC has loan forgiveness programs for social workers, teachers, nurses, farmworkers, and a program that allows eligible New Yorkers to get their loans paid for two years.

Check out the loan forgiveness programs HESC offers below along with a description of the program. Note that the programs may have more qualifications.

Loan Forgiveness for District Attorneys and Indigent Legal Services AttorneysFor district attorneys, assistant district attorneys, or indigent legal services attorneys working full-time with student loan balances.
Loan Forgiveness for Licensed Social WorkersAnnual award for social workers licensed to practice in the state who have worked at least one year in a critical human service area. Recipients must have lived in the state for 12 months prior to receiving an award.
New York State Young Farmers Loan Forgiveness Incentive ProgramOffered to college students who have graduated in the past two years from a state college or university and who agree to work full-time on a farm for five years.
New York State ‘Get on Your Feet’ Loan Forgiveness ProgramAvailable to students who graduated from a college or university in New York after December 2014. Must have earned a bachelor’s degree, be enrolled in a federal Pay As You Earn (PAYE) or eligible Income-Based Repayment (IBR) program, earn less than $50,000 a year and work in New York. Applicants must have graduated within two years of applying.
Nursing Faculty Loan Forgiveness Incentive ProgramFor nurses with a master’s or doctoral degree who have lived in the state for 12 months continuously before applying. Must be licensed to practice in New York with qualifying service.
NYS Child Welfare Worker Loan Forgiveness ProgramFor social workers who attended a state college or university. Must have lived in the state for 12 months continuously before applying, have graduated within two years, and agree to work for a not-for-profit child welfare agency in the state for five years.
NYS Teacher Loan Forgiveness ProgramThe program provides loan forgiveness awards to teachers serving in high-need school districts or subject areas, where there is a shortage of educators. Must have lived in the state for 12 months continuously before applying, be certified to teach in the state, and teach full-time at a primary or secondary school.
Source: HESC

These programs are available to New York residents only and require the borrower to be up to date with loans. Loans cannot be in default. For information on federal student loan forgiveness programs, the U.S. Department of Education said borrowers should contact their loan provider directly.