How to pay for the medical assistant school with PA school loans

For most aspiring medical assistants, PA school loans are a reality. According to the Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA), over 80% of students take out educational loans for their graduate programs.

But there are ways for you to reduce your PA loan debt. Keep these steps in mind to pay for PA school as well as your state and private PA loan options.

Choose between cheaper programs for medical assistants
Look for government grants with a service request
Look for private school scholarships for medical assistants
Investigate your state and private student loan options
Schedule your student loan repayment

Choose between cheaper programs for medical assistants

So where should you start to find out how to pay for PA school?

Depending on the focus and other factors, there are around 250 accredited doctor assistance programs to choose from. After you’ve narrowed down your school list to programs that suit your specialty and other preferences, such as:

Many public medical assistant schools offer reduced tuition fees for state residents, according to the PAEA. The association reported that in 2018 the average tuition fees for students in the state ($ 50,289) were dwarfed by that of their extra-state classmates ($ 88,677).

Private students pay even more on average, a whopping $ 91,603. These costs do not include a litany of secondary fees such as books and laboratory or clinical work.

If you choose a cheaper doctor assistant school, it will be easier for you to get the money to pay for it.

Look for government grants with a service request

If you want to get out of school essentially without debt, gift assistance should be a priority.

As long as you focus on federal government assistance options, here are three of many scholarship and award programs you can consider.

  • National Health Service Corps Scholarship: You commit to practicing in a rural, urban, or border community with limited access to care and receiving assistance for each year of service. There is a minimum service obligation of two years and a maximum of four years.
  • Scholarship Program for Health Professions: You undertake to work in a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs health facility for a minimum of two years in order to receive this scholarship. In exchange, you will receive tuition, approved required fees, and an annual payment of tuition costs.
  • Indian Health Service Scholarship Program: Qualified Native American or Alaskan students can receive funding for tuition, required fees, and living expenses if they have worked in health care facilities in those communities for at least two years.

Your (prospective) school’s financial assistance office can help you select and apply for these government-funded scholarship programs.

For a list of additional options, see our to lead for repayment of student loans and forgiveness for medical assistants.

Look for private school scholarships for medical assistants

You may also want to look for private scholarship options that typically don’t meet service or other requirements beyond the basic eligibility rules. Typically, for example, you will need to be a licensed or enrolled student in the internship and you may need to meet some academic requirements.

For example, the Physician Assistant Foundation awards several scholarships ranging from $ 1,000 to $ 2,500 to enrolled students.

You may also find opportunities that match your interests or area of ​​expertise. For example, Latino Health PAs offers a $ 1,000 scholarship and PAs in orthopedic surgery offers two $ 5,000 scholarships. For this, the five best candidates have to write a publication-worthy orthopedic case study, a review article or a clinical pearl.

Investigate your state and private student loan options

If you are federal and private student loan, they are always an option to help fund your doctor assistance program. Remember, however, that unlike scholarships or grants, loans must be paid back with interest over time, which can potentially affect your other long-term financial goals.

The Department of Education allows you to borrow up to $ 20,500 per year in direct, unsubsidized loans, and you can use PLUS loans to cover the difference – your tuition fees.

Federal loans are also generally preferable to private loans as they offer more opportunities for error. You can change your repayment schedule, temporarily suspend your repayment and, for example, apply for a loan waiver.

Personal loans, on the other hand, offer fewer options for deferring and deferring loans if your repayment fails. However, if you have a strong credit history or have a co-signer who does so, you can get a lower interest rate from a private lender than the government can offer.

Be sure to shopping spree if you are looking for private student loans to get your best terms and options. And compare all the details of Federal and personal loans before deciding on one or both paths. Borrowing as little as possible – and securing the lowest possible interest rate – can help you avoid additional debt down the line.

Schedule your student loan repayment

If you decide to take out a loan for the PA school, plan your eventual repayment while you are still in school. In addition to the above-mentioned service and award programs, there are government-funded aid programs for medical assistant graduates. Find your country contact through the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs to inquire about the possibilities.

You might as well consider Refinancing your student loan debt once you are off campus earning a salary. Members of the American Academy of Physician Assistants may receive refinancing discounts or perks from lenders such as SoFi and Laurel Street.

Use Hero’s student loan Refinancing Calculator to get an idea of ​​your savings.

Rebecca Stropoli contributed to this report.

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