The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced today that applications are being taken for the Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program (VMLRP).
The National Veterinary Medical Services Act (NVMSA) helps qualified veterinarians offset a significant portion of debt they incurred while pursuing their veterinary medicine degrees in return for their service in designated high-priority veterinary shortage situations for an allotted period of time. If a qualified veterinarian commits to at least three years in providing veterinary services in a designated veterinary shortage area, USDA’s National Institute of Food & Agriculture (NIFA) may repay up to $25,000 of their student loan debt annually.
Loan repayment benefits are limited to payments of the principal and interest on government and commercial loans received for the attendance at an accredited college of veterinary medicine resulting in a degree of Doctor of Veterinary Medicine or Veterinary Medical Degree.
The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) facilitated a Texas stakeholder working group to identify areas in need of rural vet practitioners. Eight multi-county areas in Texas have been designated as VMLRP shortage situations. These shortages include treating beef and dairy cattle, small ruminants, swine, poultry and equine.
Click here for qualifying criteria. The VMLRP application cycle is open May 9-July 8, 2011. A veterinarian may submit only one application per cycle. NIFA will host several webinar sessions for individuals who may be interested in applying this year.