As part of the program, Waldron receives around $3,000 every year for the next five years for a total of $15,000. Moving to the small town of Hillsboro, he believes, was the right decision for his family’s future. “It had two perks: to be closer to the family, but also to be able to jump ahead financially, which is something I wanted to take advantage of as well.”
Piccirillo’s program in Niagara Falls offers a similar incentive for freshly-minted professionals. “We’re a city that has lost 50,000 people over the last 50 years. We’re a post-industrial city trying to redefine itself.”
We’ve talked a little before about how some cities are trying to figure out how to keep their young, college-educated citizens from abandoning them to head off to join other young people in cities like San Francisco, New York, or Raleigh, N.C.
Now, some of these cities are providing a new incentive to lure the kids, which is basically: Stay and work in our city for a certain amount of time, and we will pay off some or all of your student loans! It’s an interesting idea, and the cities offering these programs hope that these young people will establish roots and create a flourishing community. Or, knowing how flighty young people are, they’ll stay until their loans are paid off, and then run off to their next big adventure somewhere else.