College of Business Administration (CBA)

Date of Last Revision

2023-05-03 19:06:43



Honors Course

3250 497 - 004

Number of Credits


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Date of Expected Graduation

Spring 2020


This research paper seeks to understand the effectiveness of state-sponsored loan forgiveness policies on migration decisions for health professionals. Many factors are taken into consideration when deciding on whether to move, including economic and personal preference. The preferences of recent college graduates (who largely consider job opportunity, urban life, and social amenities) can differ from the preferences of retiring professionals (where space, amenities, and weather may be large factors). With the growth in student debt, states have begun implementing loan forgiveness programs. While these programs can be aimed mainly at encouraging higher education, state sponsored programs that require a minimum in-state work residency can also reduce the “brain drain” out of the state. Retaining high-skilled workers will lower the “brain drain” away from states that can negatively impact population growth and the local economy.

Funding from the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) in 2013 when the program began was used along with individual demographics from the American Community Survey four years later in 2017 to determine if the program has a significant effect on migration rates in the United States. After running a probit model we found that these state sponsored loan forgiveness programs do reduce out of state migration by about 1% for recently graduated health professionals. These results slightly concur with our original expectations and support the effectiveness in loan forgiveness programs with in-state work requirements, though in a very low percentage.

Research Sponsor

Francesco Renna

First Reader

Elizabeth Erickson

Second Reader

Michael Nelson

Honors Faculty Advisor

Michael Nelson



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