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$58 Million Paid by Government for Student Loan Repayment Benefit

The federal government provided 8,469 employees from 33 agencies with over $58.7 million in student loan repayment benefits in 2014, according to an annual report from the Office of Personnel Management (OPM).

OPM reported a 15 percent increase in the number of employees receiving student loan repayment benefits and an 11 percent increase in agencies’ overall financial investment in the incentive as compared to 2013.

The Departments of Defense, Justice, State, Veterans Affairs and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) accounted for over 79 percent of the cost of all student loan repayment benefits, and 75 percent of all student loan repayment recipients worked at those five agencies.

Congress authorized agencies to provide student loan repayment benefits as a tool to recruit and retain employees. For example, over 500 engineers at the Defense Department received the benefit.

OPM notes in the report that it “strongly encourage[s] agencies to establish metrics to demonstrate the value of using student loan repayments and other discretionary incentives,” such as comparing the retention rates of employees enjoying the benefit versus those who do not.

The full report, Federal Student Loan Repayment Program Calendar Year 2014, can be accessed here

Posted in General News

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