New Jersey Pay It Forward Program
Impact Investments, Education, Economic Mobility
$12.5MRevolving workforce fund to upskill residents and fill critical job openings
Learners enrolled as of April 2023
Social Finance is partnering with Governor Phil Murphy, the State of New Jersey, and the NJ CEO Council on the nation’s first Pay It Forward program to prepare New Jersey residents for in-demand jobs in industries like health care, IT, and clean energy.
The New Jersey Pay It Forward Program provides zero-interest, no-fee loans for participants to enroll in high-quality job training, especially those who may not have the savings to pay for training or the credit history for a loan. Participants pay no upfront costs and receive living stipends and supportive services including access to emergency aid funds and mental health counseling to help them succeed.
After completing training, if participants earn above a minimum salary (e.g., $44,940 for those with a household of three), they pay back their loans through monthly repayments of 10% of their discretionary income for up to five years. If they don’t earn more than this minimum salary, they pay nothing. Participants also do not have to pay back their living stipends or cost of supportive services.
Percent of participants without a four-year degree
There is no return to investors and all loan repayments are recycled back into the fund to support future learners. The program intends to collect and publish information on student outcomes and the effectiveness of the Pay It Forward model.
FAQ | Overview for Interested Learners | Student Bill of Rights
The Cybersecurity Professional Bootcamp at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) is a 10-month online course that can be financed through NJ Pay It Forward loans. To enroll, register here or call (973) 688-5050.
The Nursing Program at Hudson County Community College is a two-year program that can be financed through NJ Pay It Forward loans. To enroll, register here or call (201) 360-4754.
HVAC or Welding
The HVAC Program and Welding Technology Program at Camden County College are nine-month courses that can be financed through NJ Pay It Forward loans. To enroll, register here or call (856) 374-4955.
Percent of participants who are people of color
We partner with proven, high-quality training programs that have a track record of strong employment outcomes, employer relationships, and experience serving learners from diverse backgrounds. If you have a job training program in health care, IT, or clean energy and are interested in offering the NJ Pay It Forward loan to your students, please contact our team.
For Current Students
Current NJ Pay It Forward students can use the links below to request supportive services, including a nonrepayable living stipend, mental health services, and emergency financial assistance.
Current NJ Pay It Forward students can access information about their Community Financial Resources/U.S. Bank Focus Prepaid Visa Debit Card below, in English or in Spanish.
How It Works
Pay It Forward, developed in collaboration with Social Finance, will make New Jersey stronger and fairer by providing access to job training for residents who need it most. Creating equitable opportunities is what we stand for.
Governor Phil Murphy
State of New Jersey
The NJ Pay It Forward Program allows individuals to pursue upward economic mobility for themselves and their families without the burden of high-interest private loans.
Secretary of Higher Education, State of New Jersey
- Podcast: NJ Bets on Zero-Interest, No-Fee Workforce Training Loans, WorkingNation
- Ideas We Should Steal: Training Workers for Well-Paying Jobs, The Philadelphia Citizen
- The Rise of Outcomes-Based Loans, Open Campus
- Outcomes-Based Loans or ISAs?, Work Shift
- Governor Murphy, NJ CEO Council, & Social Finance Launch New Jersey Pay It Forward Program to Prepare Students for Good-Paying Jobs in Health Care, IT, and Clean Energy, State of New Jersey, Office of the Governor
- New Jersey Pay It Forward Program Launch Event
- New Jersey Launches ‘Nation-Leading’ Affordable Loan Program at 3 Colleges, Politico
- NJ Launches what Murphy calls a ‘One of a Kind’ Student Loan and Training Program, NJ.com
- Governor Murphy and Leading New Jersey CEOs Launch New Jersey Pay It Forward to Support Post-Pandemic Career Seekers, State of New Jersey, Office of the Governor
- Governor Phil Murphy Announces New Jersey Pay It Forward Program, Forbes Breaking News
Partners and Supporters
- The State of New Jersey provided $7.5 million to initiate the New Jersey Pay It Forward Program. The following state agencies are also helping to implement the program: Office of the Governor; Higher Education Student Assistance Authority, NJ Economic Development Authority, Office of the Secretary of Higher Education, Department of Labor & Workforce Development, Department of Banking and Insurance, and Division of Consumer Affairs.
- The New Jersey CEO Council is offering strategic guidance and making philanthropic contributions to cover training and supportive services. The CEO Council consists of BD, Campbell Soup Company, Johnson & Johnson, Merck & Co, Prudential Financial, PSEG, RWJBarnabas Health, and Verizon.
- Social Finance is designing and managing the program, with support from Blue Meridian Partners.
- Camden County College, Hudson County Community College, and New Jersey Institute of Technology are providing training and supportive services for participants.
- Funding U is serving as the loan origination partner.
- MOHELA is serving as the loan servicing partner.
- UMB Financial Corporation is providing financial services.
- Chapman and Cutler LLP is providing legal guidance.
Header photo courtesy of New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy’s Office, photographed at the launch event of the New Jersey Pay It Forward Program held at Hudson County Community College.