Individuals have seven years from the date of their completed service to use the Segal Education Award. You can divide up your award and use it any way you want, as long as it is for authorized expenditures. For example, you could apply a portion of your award to existing qualified student loans and save the remainder to pay for authorized college costs in the future. Your education award is transferable, but only to your child, grandchild, or foster child if you are at least 55 years of age when you started the program.
Most postsecondary loans that are backed by the federal government are qualified for repayment with an AmeriCorps education award. These include Stafford Loans, Perkins Loans, William D. Ford Direct Loans, Federal Consolidated Loans, Supplemental Loans for Students, Primary Care Loans, Nursing Student Loans, Health Education Assistance Loans, and loans issued to AmeriCorps members by the Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education. Your lender should be able to tell you if your loan is qualified.
The education award can be used at most intuitions of higher education (including graduate and professional programs), as well as some vocational schools. An institution is considered qualified for the education award if it has an agreement with the U.S. Department of Education whereby its students are eligible for at least one of the federally backed forms of financial assistance-such as Pell Grants, Perkins Loans, Stafford Loans, National Direct Loans, and Federal Consolidated Loans. If in doubt, check with the institution's financial aid office prior to making definite plans.
AmeriCorps members can receive up to the equivalent of two full-time education awards. Individuals can serve up to four terms but only receive the education award for the successful completion of the first two terms.