NIH Extramural Loan Repayment Programs
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) Extramural Loan Repayment Program (1MB) is designed to attract health professionals to careers in clinical, pediatric, health disparities, or contraceptive and infertility research. The program offers up to $50,000 per year to repay student loans of scientists, physicians, dentists, and other doctoral level health professionals conducting biomedical or behavioral research funded by domestic nonprofit or government organizations.
Applying to the LRP
- Visit the LRP website
- Review program information and eligibility criteria
- Read NIH IC Mission and Priorities and talk to a Program Officer (Astrid C. Haugen, NIEHS LRP)
- Obtain a Commons ID
- Talk to your mentor and potential referees, and contact a business official at your research center before you apply
In exchange for a two-year research commitment, NIH will:
- Repay qualified educational debt up to $50,000 per year
- Reimburse Federal and state taxes resulting from your repayment award
- Repay qualified educational debt after completion of the two-year commitment through competitive renewals
- LRP awardees with student debt remaining at the completion of award, may apply for a competitive renewal provided they continue to meet NIH's eligibility requirements
Applicants must meet the following criteria:
- Doctoral degree (M.D., Ph.D., or equivalent)
- Research must be funded by a domestic nonprofit, university or U.S. federal, state, or local government entity
- Educational loan debt equal to at least 20 percent of your annual salary
- Conduct research for an average of at least 20 hours/week
- U.S. Citizen or permanent resident
Application Cycle Deadlines and Notification
- New and Renewal: September 1 - November 15
- Notification: August/September
- Follow the Application Process Interactive Roadmap to learn about the extramural LRPs, verify your eligibility, and apply to one of the programs.
- The LRP Application Guide will acquaint you with the content and format of the application so that you can begin preparing to complete it.
- Priority score and reviewer comments for loan repayment applications are not provided to applicants. If an LRP application is not awarded, the applicant is allowed to submit a new application in a subsequent year. Official summary statements are not generated, and thus are not available to the applicants. Applicants are not expected to indicate how their application differs from any earlier applications they may have submitted.
- Unsuccessful LRP applicants are encouraged to contact Astrid C. Haugen for any feedback that may be available.
Tools and Training
- LRP Application Guide – Prepare to complete an LRP application by getting started with this guide. The extramural LRP application cycle is open September 1– November 15. Starting your preparations as early as possible can help you avoid being rushed as the deadline approaches.
- Tips for Completing a Competitive LRP Application – A helpful guide on writing a competitive LRP application.
- LRP Repayment Estimator – What can the LRPs do for you financially? Use the tool on the main NIH LRP webpage to approximate the student loan repayment benefits you may receive as a participant.
- LRP Ambassador Network – Connect with current and past recipients who can share their experiences and offer application advice.
- LRP Application Review Process – Provides FAQs about how an application is assigned to an NIH institute, the review process and evaluation, and insight about how funding decisions are made.
- LRP Data and Reports – The dashboard provides aggregated data about the applications received and awards funded by the NIH LRPs. Also available on this webpage are progress and feature reports about the programs.