Through the University of Denver Sturm College of Law Loan Repayment Assistance Program, qualified alumni who make a commitment to work in public interest areas may qualify for repayment assistance on their student loans. To be considered for LRAP, alumni must submit an application online. The application process is competitive and not all who apply will be approved. Read on to see eligibility requirements, award amounts, and the application process for the University of Denver Sturm College of Law Loan Repayment Assistance Program.
In 2017, Denver Law graduates, who borrowed at least one loan while enrolled, had an average of $140,000 in law school debt. Due to the fact that public interest jobs often pay a significantly lower salary than private-sector positions, many graduates feel that they cannot accept public interest positions, for fear that they will not be able to pay their debt. Often, even if graduates take public interest positions upon graduation, they leave the position after a few years, because they just cannot afford to continue at such a low salary.
Income-driven plans, like Income-Based Repayment and Pay As You Earn, alleviate much of this financial challenge, but the Loan Repayment Assistance Program provides additional assistance with the payments under the Income-Driven Plans.
To be considered for LRAP, alumni must submit an application online. The application process is competitive and not all who apply will be approved. Applications for LRAP are collected each year in December and January. To be eligible, alumni must have secured a qualifying job at the time of application. Please review the LRAP guidelines for program details.
LRAP Eligibility Requirements
- Graduated with a JD from Sturm College of Law after May 2003
- Currently, work in a public service field (government or non-profit) in a position that utilizes your legal skills or qualifies as a “JD Advantage” job (judicial clerkships do not qualify)
- Income of $75,000 or less
- Be in repayment and not past due on your student loans
LRAP Application Materials
- A completed online LRAP application
- Most recent federal tax return (most likely 2018)
- Most recent W2 forms (2018 or 2019)
- Federal student loan summary (available online at www.nslds.ed.gov) – showing all federal loans that you’ve borrowed.
- Monthly Loan Payment Documentation – documentation from your loan servicer(s) of your monthly federal loan payment.
- Private Loan Documentation – if you have private loans, documentation from your lender(s) of the amount borrowed and monthly payment.
- Employment verification from your current employer (should be on letterhead and include dates of employment, salary, and job title)
- 2 letters of recommendation from persons familiar with your commitment to public interest work and your legal skills and experience.
- Personal statement speaking to your interest in a public interest career and need for LRAP funding. Personal statements are generally between 500-750 words.
How much can I expect to be awarded?
Through the University of Denver Sturm College of Law Loan Repayment Assistance Program, applicants may be eligible to have between 15% – 75% of their monthly payment covered. Read below to see how this is applied:
- The LRAP award amount is calculated based on a recipient’s annual IBR/(RE)PAYE payment. The LRAP Committee strives to provide LRAP funding that will cover as much of a recipient’s monthly payments as possible.
- In recent years, awards have covered between 15%-75% of a recipient’s monthly payments
- Awards are renewable for up to 5 years, provided that you continue to meet employment and income requirements
LRAP Selection Criteria
Due to limited funding, we are not able to award all eligible applicants. In selecting among competing applications, the LRAP Committee:
- Gives preference to Applicants working for non-profit organizations,
- Considers the number of scholarships received by the Applicant during law school,
- Considers the amount of the Applicant’s law school debt, and, to a lesser extent, any prior educational debt, and
- Considers the Applicant’s demonstrated commitment to public interest law
How do I apply for this repayment program?
You can apply for the University of Denver Sturm College of Law Loan Repayment Assistance Program, you will need to fill out their online application which can be found here. There is a strict timeframe in which you can apply for this program. You can find the program deadlines through the program’s website.
Head over to the program website here for a full breakdown of this year’s requirements and application guidelines.