New York State Young Farmers Loan Forgiveness Incentive Program

The NYS Young Farmers Loan Forgiveness Incentive Program is offered to encourage recent college graduates to pursue careers in farming in NYS. This Program provides loan forgiveness awards to individuals who obtain an undergraduate degree from an approved NYS college or university and agree to operate a farm in NYS, on a full-time basis, for five years.


  • YFLF
  • NYS DREAM Act YFLF Applicants

Eligibility

An applicant must:

  • be a NYS resident and have resided in NYS for 12 continuous months prior to applying for this Program;
  • be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen;
  • obtain an undergraduate degree from an approved NYS college or university;
  • have an outstanding balance on an eligible student loan debt(s) from obtaining such degree;
  • apply for this Program within two years after college graduation;
  • operate a farm in NYS on a full time basis;
  • execute a Service Contract agreeing to operate a farm in NYS on a full time basis for at least five years;
  • be in a non-default status on a student loan made under any NYS or federal education loan program or repayment of any NYS award; and
  • be in compliance with the terms of any service condition imposed by a NYS award.

Eligible Student Loans

A successful applicant must have an outstanding balance on eligible student loan debt used to fund an undergraduate degree from an approved NYS college or university.

Eligible student loans include NYS or federal government loans, or private student loans made by commercial entities subject to governmental examination.

Parent PLUS loans are not eligible.

Ineligible loans also include non-educational student loan consolidations and home equity loans used to pay off student loans.

Award Amount

The maximum lifetime award under this Program is $50,000, or the applicant’s actual eligible student loan indebtedness at the time eligibility is established, whichever is less. Awards will be paid in annual disbursements up to $10,000, or the remaining loan indebtedness. Any additional payments made to reduce the outstanding balance may cause a reduction in the total amount of the award.

Note: Any loan forgiveness award payment received may have tax implications. A 1099 form will be issued by the NYS Office of the State Comptroller reflecting the total loan forgiveness payments received by the recipient for the year. Any questions regarding potential tax implications should be directed to a tax professional, the Internal Revenue Service, or the NYS Department of Taxation and Finance.

Duration

Payments are available for up to five years.

How to Apply

Recipient Selection

The number of awards paid under this Program is limited to available funding; however, no more than ten awards will be granted each year.

Priority is given to prior recipients seeking payment. Second priority is given to applicants who are economically disadvantaged with a priority given to those applicants completing the second, third, fourth or fifth year of full-time farm operation.

Payment

Payments are made directly to the recipient.

The NYS Young Farmers Loan Forgiveness Incentive Program Application will be used to establish an applicant’s eligibility as well as to process the first award payment.

In subsequent years, a recipient must submit a Payment Application and verification of farm operation for which payment is sought under this Program by the deadlines set by HESC. Payment Applications are provided annually to recipients in October.

Questions?

Please contact the HESC Scholarship Unit at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with questions regarding this Program.

Eligibility

  1. Your permanent home is in NYS and you are or have ONE of the following:
    1. U-Visa
    2. T-Visa
    3. Temporary protected status, pursuant to the Federal Immigration Act of 1990
    4. Without lawful immigration status (including those with DACA status)
    5. AND you meet ONE of the following criteria:
      1. You attended a NYS high school for 2 or more years, graduated from a NYS high school, and are applying for an award for undergraduate study at a NYS college within five years of receiving your NYS high school diploma OR
      2. You attended a NYS high school for 2 or more years, graduated from a NYS high school, and are applying for an award for graduate study at a NYS college within ten years of receiving your NYS high school diploma OR
      3. You received a NYS high school equivalency diploma, and are applying for an award for undergraduate study at a NYS college within five years of receiving your NYS high school equivalency diploma OR
      4. You did not attend or graduate from a NYS high school, did not receive a NYS high school equivalency diploma, but are charged the NYS resident in-State tuition rate at a SUNY or CUNY college for any reason
  2. Your permanent home is outside of NYS and you are or have ONE of the following:
    1. U.S. citizen
    2. Permanent lawful resident
    3. Of a class of refugees paroled by the attorney general under his or her parole authority pertaining to the admission of aliens to the U.S.
    4. U-Visa
    5. T-Visa
    6. Temporary protected status, pursuant to the Federal Immigration Act of 1990
    7. Without lawful immigration status (including those with DACA status)
    8. AND you meet ONE of the following criteria:
      1. You attended a NYS high school for 2 or more years, graduated from a NYS high school, and are applying for an award for undergraduate study at a NYS college within five years of receiving your NYS high school diploma OR
      2. You attended a NYS high school for 2 or more years, graduated from a NYS high school, and are applying for an award for graduate study at a NYS college within ten years of receiving your NYS high school diploma OR
      3. You received a NYS high school equivalency diploma, and are applying for an award for undergraduate study at a NYS college within five years of receiving your NYS high school equivalency diploma OR
      4. You received a NYS high school equivalency diploma, and are applying for an award for graduate study at a NYS college within ten years of receiving your NYS high school equivalency diploma OR
      5. You did not attend or graduate from a NYS high school, did not receive a NYS high school equivalency diploma, but are charged the NYS resident in-State tuition rate at a SUNY or CUNY college for any reason

Note: A student seeking New York State financial aid, including TAP, for the first time, must pass a federally approved ATB test identified by the Board of Regents if the student does not possess a U.S. high school diploma or its recognized equivalent.

How to Apply

If you are newly applying for NYS financial aid under the provisions of the DREAM Act, you must apply for eligibility under the NYS DREAM Act before applying for NYS Young Farmers Loan Forgiveness Incentive Program. If you have previously qualified under the NYS DREAM Act, you will simply need to add a new application to apply for NYS Young Farmers Loan Forgiveness Incentive Program. Find the link to the application here when the 2019-20 NYS Young Farmers Loan Forgiveness Incentive Program application becomes available.

 

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