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New loans aim to keep nurses in R.I.

Nursing students in Rhode Island have a new option for financing their education — a loan program with zero interest for up to four years, provided they work in Rhode Island.

With Governor Chafee in attendance, the Rhode Island Student Loan Authority on Tuesday announced its new Nursing Reward Program, saying the program was intended to offset a projected nursing shortage by encouraging graduates of the state’s nursing schools to take jobs in Rhode Island.

The loan program will be available for nursing students starting with the 2011-2012 academic year. To participate, the borrower must become a licensed registered nurse and work at least 20 hours a week, with responsibility for direct patient care at a licensed health-care facility in Rhode Island. Nurses who meet those terms will not have to pay interest on loans obtained through this program for up to 48 months.

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posted in: Education, Rhode Island
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