NIH’s Loan Repayment Programs (LRPs) play a pivotal role in keeping promising young investigators in active biomedical research careers. To help spread the word about the NIH Loan Repayment Programs, NIH recently launched a new and improved network to connect potential LRP applicants with former and current LRP awardees.
Through the NIH LRP Ambassador Program, LRP ambassadors serve as a personalized link/connection between the programs and potential applicants at their home institutions, providing advice and encouragement regarding the LRP application process, their experiences, and more.
A new LRP Ambassador Program web page assists ambassadors in spreading the word, with resources such as a toolkit loaded with information to help ambassadors learn more about the LRPs, an ambassador directory to assist individuals in locating LRP ambassadors near them, and other outreach materials that will help advise potential candidates on how to begin and navigate the LRP application process. Past and present LRP awardees, mentors, supervisors, and institutional representatives are eligible to become an ambassador.
The NIH LRPs were established by Congress to recruit and retain highly qualified health professionals – many of whom have amassed significant student loan debt during their education and training – into biomedical or biobehavioral research careers. The NIH LRPs pay up to $35,000 annually of qualified educational debt in return for a commitment to engage in NIH mission-relevant research. The NIH LRPs will begin accepting applications on September 1, 2017.
The LRPs play a pivotal role in keeping promising young investigators in active biomedical research careers, and LRP ambassadors play a crucial role in increasing awareness of the programs. Both represent an important investment in in the future of health research and the well-being of this nation. While the ambassadors will be an important component of our outreach, we encourage our readers to help spread the word to improve awareness about the LRP program.