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Industry News

Technical School vs. College: Which is Better?

After high school graduation ceremonies and parties wind down for new graduates, it’s time to get serious and plan for the future. While many people first consider pursuing a college degree, college is not the only post-secondary option out there. Recently, technical schools have been getting more attention from learners—and it’s easy to see why. Several factors influence a person’s decision to get an academic degree at a university or earn a certificate from a vocational school. These can include the subject of study, tuition costs, and the potential to earn a good living after completion, to name a few. 

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The Biden-Harris Administration’s Student Debt Relief Plan Explained

What the program means for you, and what comes next

President Biden, Vice President Harris, and the U.S. Department of Education have announced a three-part plan to help working and middle-class federal student loan borrowers’ transition back to regular payment as pandemic-related support expires. This plan includes loan forgiveness of up to $20,000. Many borrowers and families may be asking themselves “what do I have to do to claim this relief?” This page is a resource to answer those questions and more. There will be more details announced in the coming weeks. To be notified when the process has officially opened, sign up at the Department of Education subscription page.

The Biden Administration’s Student Loan Debt Relief Plan

Part 1. Final extension of the student loan repayment pause

Due to the economic challenges created by the pandemic, the Biden-Harris Administration has extended the student loan repayment pause a number of times. Because of this, no one with a federally held loan has had to pay a single dollar in loan payments since President Biden took office.

To ensure a smooth transition to repayment and prevent unnecessary defaults, the Biden-Harris Administration will extend the pause a final time through December 31, 2022, with payments resuming in January 2023.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Do I need to do anything to extend my student loan pause through the end of the year?

  • No. The extended pause will occur automatically.

Part 2. Providing targeted debt relief to low- and middle-income families

To smooth the transition back to repayment and help borrowers at highest risk of delinquencies or default once payments resume, the U.S. Department of Education will provide up to $20,000 in debt cancellation to Pell Grant recipients with loans held by the Department of Education and up to $10,000 in debt cancellation to non-Pell Grant recipients. Borrowers are eligible for this relief if their individual income is less than $125,000 or $250,000 for households.

In addition, borrowers who are employed by non-profits, the military, or federal, state, Tribal, or local government may be eligible to have all of their student loans forgiven through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. This is because of time-limited changes that waive certain eligibility criteria in the PSLF program. These temporary changes expire on October 31, 2022. For more information on eligibility and requirements, go to PSLF.gov.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I know if I am eligible for debt cancellation?

  • To be eligible, your annual income must have fallen below $125,000 (for individuals) or $250,000 (for married couples or heads of households)
  • If you received a Pell Grant in college and meet the income threshold, you will be eligible for up to $20,000 in debt cancellation.
  • If you did not receive a Pell Grant in college and meet the income threshold, you will be eligible for up to $10,000 in debt cancellation.

What does the “up to” in “up to $20,000” or “up to $10,000” mean?

  • Your relief is capped at the amount of your outstanding debt.
  • For example: If you are eligible for $20,000 in debt relief, but have a balance of $15,000 remaining, you will only receive $15,000 in relief.

What do I need to do in order to receive loan forgiveness?

  • Nearly 8 million borrowers may be eligible to receive relief automatically because relevant income data is already available to the U.S. Department of Education.
  • If the U.S. Department of Education doesn’t have your income data – or if you don’t know if the U.S. Department of Education has your income data, the Administration will launch a simple application in the coming weeks.
  • The application will be available before the pause on federal student loan repayments ends on December 31st.
  • If you would like to be notified by the U.S. Department of Education when the application is open, please sign up at the Department of Education subscription page.

What is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program?

  • The Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program forgives the remaining balance on your federal student loans after 120 payments working full-time for federal, state, Tribal, or local government; military; or a qualifying non-profit.
  • Temporary changes, ending on Oct. 31, 2022, provide flexibility that makes it easier than ever to receive forgiveness by allowing borrowers to receive credit for past periods of repayment that would otherwise not qualify for PSLF.
  • Enrollments on or after Nov. 1, 2022 will not be eligible for this treatment. We encourage borrowers to sign up today. Visit PSLF.gov to learn more and apply.

Part 3. Make the student loan system more manageable for current and future borrowers

Income-based repayment plans have long existed within the U.S. Department of Education. However, the Biden-Harris Administration is proposing a rule to create a new income-driven repayment plan that will substantially reduce future monthly payments for lower- and middle-income borrowers.

The rule would:

  • Require borrowers to pay no more than 5% of their discretionary income monthly on undergraduate loans. This is down from the 10% available under the most recent income-driven repayment plan.
  • Raise the amount of income that is considered non-discretionary income and therefore is protected from repayment, guaranteeing that no borrower earning under 225% of the federal poverty level—about the annual equivalent of a $15 minimum wage for a single borrower—will have to make a monthly payment.
  • Forgive loan balances after 10 years of payments, instead of 20 years, for borrowers with loan balances of $12,000 or less.
  • Cover the borrower’s unpaid monthly interest, so that unlike other existing income-driven repayment plans, no borrower’s loan balance will grow as long as they make their monthly payments—even when that monthly payment is $0 because their income is low.

The Biden-Harris Administration is working to quickly implement improvements to student loans. Check back to this page for updates on progress. If you’d like to be the first to know, sign up for email updates from the U.S. Department of Education.

Source: https://studentaid.gov/debt-relief-announcement/

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5 Best States to Start a Medical Assistant Career

Medical assistants are an indispensable part of the healthcare system. Starting a career in allied health as a medical assistant is a wise decision for many people since medical assistants are some of the most in-demand professionals today due to shortages in nurses and doctors. 

Job opportunities abound for medical assistants, with forecasted job openings of roughly 104,400 annually for the next 10 years. This gives them plenty of choice about where they work. 

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Best Practices for Animal Restraint as a Veterinary Assistant

Proper handling of animals—including restraint—is part of a veterinary assistant’s job responsibilities, and is an essential skill for vet techs and veterinarians to effectively provide care. At first, restraining animals may seem simple, but proper animal handling and restraint go far beyond just holding the animal down. In fact, it can be one of the most challenging yet underappreciated parts of animal care. If the animal is anxious and resists, veterinarians may find it hard to administer medications or carry out necessary procedures. This is particularly problematic when the animal needs emergency care. 

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4 Quick Workouts for Paramedics

The physical demands of being a paramedic often mean they have to work long shifts, usually 12 hours. During shifts, paramedics respond to myriad calls and are dispatched to several emergencies that may require them to rush, jump, carry weight, kneel, and bend while taking care of patients. 

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5 Reasons to Enroll in a Technical School

Education has evolved. It is no longer the case that a university or college education is certain to lead to a good job, and student loans can be crippling for people starting out in life.  

Consequently, many educational institutions are updating their curriculum to ensure that students get the best chance for future success with their chosen careers. These changes factor significantly into an individual’s employability when they graduate. Today, many employers focus on hiring people with the right set of skills and appropriate knowledge that will help them get the most value and success. 

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The Impact of the Pandemic on Higher Education

Higher education often means meeting new people, enjoying new experiences, and discovering new places. With lockdowns and pandemic restrictions in place, particularly with uncertainty due to the emergence of COVID variants, much has changed about how students learn. 

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Navient Reaches $1.85 Billion Settlement With State AGs, Agrees to Cancel Loans for Thousands

39 state Attorneys General announced on January 13th 2022 that Navient, known as one of the nation’s largest student loan servicers, will provide relief totaling $1.85 billion to resolve allegations of widespread unfair and deceptive student loan servicing practices and abuses in originating predatory student loans.

This settlement resolves claims that since 2009, despite representing that it would help borrowers find the best repayment options for them, Navient steered struggling student loan borrowers into costly long-term forbearances instead of counseling them about the benefits of more affordable income-driven repayment plans.

According to the attorneys general, the interest that accrued because of Navient’s forbearance steering practices was added to the borrowers’ loan balances, pushing borrowers further in debt. Had the company instead provided borrowers with the help it promised, income-driven repayment plans could have potentially reduced payments to as low as $0 per month, provided interest subsidies, and/or helped attain forgiveness of any remaining balance after 20-25 years of qualifying payments (or 10 years for borrowers qualified under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program).

As a result of today’s settlement, borrowers receiving private loan debt cancellation will receive a notice from Navient by July 2022, along with refunds of any payments made on the cancelled private loans after June 30, 2021. Federal loan borrowers who are eligible for a restitution payment of approximately $260 will receive a postcard in the mail from the settlement administrator later this spring.

Federal loan borrowers who qualify for relief under this settlement do not need to take any action except update or create their studentaid.gov account to ensure that the U.S. Department of Education has their current address.

The settlement was led by Pennsylvania, Washington, Illinois, Massachusetts, and California, and was joined by attorneys general in Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Vermont, and Wisconsin.

For more information, please visit the website below which has been created to inform affected borrowers of the settlement and terms.

https://navientagsettlement.com/Home/portalid/0

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acls bls certified

How To Get ACLS and BLS Certified

acls bls certified

For Emergency Medical Professionals and Registered Nurses, getting additional certifications in BLS (Basic Life Support) and ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) from the American Heart Association supplements your education and prepares you to handle a cardiac emergency.

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