Public Service Loan Forgiveness Waiver – You may be eligible for student loan forgiveness

From now until October 31, 2022, public service employees of qualifying organizations are eligible to apply for the Limited PSLF Waiver, and may be able to have student loan debts forgiven. In order to qualify, employees must have a Direct Loan(s), and be working for a government or nonprofit agency for at least ten years while making payments on your loans.

If you think your employment may qualify, you are encouraged to apply, even if you have not made 120 student loan payments or been employed with a qualifying agency for ten years. Check your employer’s eligibility by using the PSLF Help Tool .

Find more information or apply by October 31 here:  https://studentaid.gov/announcements-events/pslf-limited-waiver?utm_source=mcp&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=camp_607

What to know about President Biden’s recent announcement on student loan forgiveness

(Image source: twitter.com/POTUS)

As many of you know, President Biden announced earlier today his intentions to forgive up to $20,000 in federal student loan debt for Americans under a certain income threshold, as well as extend the COVID-19 pandemic-related payment freeze for federal loan borrowers through 2022.

We understand that you likely have questions about whether you qualify for this forgiveness, so we’ve assembled the below information to help you better understand what this historic announcement means for you.

What did President Biden say about student loan forgiveness?

On August 24, 2022 President Biden announced that he intends to implement action allowing individual borrowers who earn less than $125,000 annually, or families earning less than $250,000 annually to receive $10,000 in federal student loan forgiveness.  He also announced that the current freeze on federal student loan payments would be extended four additional months, ending in January 2023.

Additionally, President Biden announced that those who have received Pell Grants in the past would be eligible for an additional $10,000 in federal loan forgiveness, bringing the total student loan forgiveness amount that these individuals are eligible for to $20,000.

How do I know if I am eligible for loan forgiveness?

If you are an American who currently has a student loan balance, and whose earnings fall within the above income guidelines, then you are likely eligible for the initial $10,000 forgiveness. Pell Grant recipients, those undergraduates who have the most significant financial need, may be eligible for the additional $10,000 forgiveness.

There are two ways to check into whether or not you are a Pell Grant recipient:

  1. – Use your FSA ID to log into your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) account.

You will need the username and password that you created when you first processed your FAFSA form in order to access this account.  Once inside your dashboard, you will select “view Student Aid Report (SAR)” on your homepage.  This report will show you which financial aid awards you have received in the past, and which others you are eligible for.

  1. – Visit the National Student Loan Database website.

What other opportunities are there for student loan forgiveness that I should know about?

From now until October 31, 2022, public service employees of qualifying organizations are eligible to apply for the Limited PSLF Waiver and may be able to have student loan debts forgiven. In order to qualify, employees must have a Direct Loan(s), and be working for a government or nonprofit agency for at least ten years while making payments on your loans.

If you think your employment may qualify, you are encouraged to apply, even if you have not made 120 student loan payments or been employed with a qualifying agency for ten years. Check your employer’s eligibility by using the PSLF Help Tool .

For the full fact sheet on President Biden’s announcement regarding student loan debt relief, see the statement released from the White House here.

Be a Great Ally In and Outside of the Office

The month of June is one in which we celebrate diversity in its many forms throughout the United States. June is LGBTQ+ Pride Month, as well as the month where we celebrate the freeing of enslaved African Americans via the Emancipation Proclamation on Juneteenth.

Whether or not you identify as a member of either group, there are specific ways that you can be supportive of your traditionally disenfranchised colleagues both in and outside of the office. Read on for some easy, actionable tips for supporting others in the workplace during June and throughout the rest of the year.

1. Educate yourself
The first step in good allyship is to learn (or in some cases, unlearn) about the issues. Read books on the history of systemic inequality, have open conversations with people who have different backgrounds and experiences, and make an active effort to diversify your networks. Be sure to approach conversations with curiosity, but be careful to avoid dissecting the lived experiences of others or refuting their perceptions of their experiences. Increasing your knowledge is an important place to start in your allyship.

2. Resist assuming what others need
What one person needs (or wants) in terms of allyship may be different from another colleague. It can (understandably) be confusing at times to determine what the best actions are for you to take as an ally. The best way to decide how to move forward? Ask.

Remember that your colleagues have agency all their own, and while they may appreciate you speaking up or otherwise acting on their behalf, there may be better ways to support them. If you are unsure about how best to be an ally, always err on the side of caution and simply ask the person how you can be supportive of them.

3. Don’t underestimate the power of being the “second courageous” – Adapted from BetterAllies.com
We’ve all been there — in a meeting or in the break room, where someone uses offensive terminology or makes an inappropriate joke. One courageous soul intervenes to push back against this behavior, and everyone else shifts awkwardly as they wait for the exchange to be over.

Many times, we have a habit of employing delayed camaraderie — reaching out afterward to the brave soul and letting them know that you appreciate them for speaking up. But what if instead, you do that in the moment? There is just as much power in being the second courageous person to say, “Hey — not cool” when someone makes an offensive remark in your workplace. Doing so not only shows those around you that you are an ally, but it also lets the offending person know that their behavior is deemed unacceptable by more than just one person, encouraging them to rethink their own attitudes in the process.

Here at Ohio State, we adhere to the university-wide Shared Values Initiative. This initiative reminds us of the values that we share as a university community, and our shared commitment to those values. As an alumnus (or friend) of the university, these values extend to you as well. We encourage you to explore the university’s Shared Values Initiative to understand this effort within the Ohio State community, and consider ways that you can utilize this language and effort in your own endeavors to be better ally to those around you.

 

Boost Your Career Progression with LinkedIn

 

Any working professional knows that LinkedIn is the de facto hub for networking and career development.  This online resource is an excellent way to cultivate your professional network, building relationships with acquaintances, keeping your current achievements and ideas top of mind, and more.  It also (conveniently) serves as a live portfolio of your career achievements, replacing the need for a resume and cover letter in a networking setting.

What you may not realize is that there are a myriad of ways to utilize LinkedIn in your career progression that don’t necessarily have much to do with the networking aspect at all. More than  simply the “professional social network” it began as, LinkedIn offers multiple resources in its bid to be an all-inclusive professional development hub. Below, we explore a few of those resources for you.

1. – Easy Apply

One of the biggest complaints among jobseekers in today’s market is that job applications are too tedious and time consuming, with the average job application taking upwards of 35 minutes to complete on an employer’s website.  LinkedIn has taken steps to streamline that process and take the pain out of applying for jobs by introducing its “Easy Apply” feature.  For jobs posted to the site’s built in job board, employers can elect to have candidates utilize “Easy Apply”.  With this feature, eligible candidates can get their resume and profile to a hiring manager within just a few clicks without ever leaving the LinkedIn site.

2. –  LinkedIn Learning

Whether you’re currently in a job search or simply looking to stay up to date with current trends, you’ve likely heard that one of the most important things a mid-career or seasoned professional can do to remain competitive in the job market is to take advantage of upskilling opportunities.  LinkedIn provides an excellent avenue for upskilling through its on-demand learning platform, LinkedIn Learning.  This platform provides access to more than 13,000 high-quality courses on a litany of subjects that you can access wherever (and whenever) you’d like.  LinkedIn also takes it a step further by offering badges of recognition to let your network know when you’ve completed a course!

3. – Company Research

While this one is not something specifically outlined as a separate feature on LinkedIn, it is one of the best advantages of being a member of the site.  LinkedIn essentially functions as a huge database, and with its excellent filtering system, there are many opportunities for job seekers to perform company research, including getting a good understanding of company titles and organizational structure, keeping up with the latest news from a company, seeing job postings all in one place, finding employee reviews, and more!

In short, there are no shortage of advantages to keeping up to date with LinkedIn, regardless of where you are in your career progression.  Even if you are not huge on networking and sharing information about yourself, the platform offers many helpful ways to improve your career standing and get to your next level.

This month, our Job Club session will focus more intently on how seasoned professionals can use LinkedIn to their advantage in their own job search. More info is below – we hope to see you there!

***

Job Club: LinkedIn and the Seasoned Professional with Dr. Elisse Wright Barnes

LinkedIn has become a mainstay in the professional networking arsenal of working professionals.

It is especially important for savvy seasoned professionals seeking to make career advancements to understand how to leverage the power of this platform in order to fully access the opportunities that may be available to them within their extended networks.

Join the Alumni Career Management staff and special guest Dr. Elisse Wright-Barnes, lead trainer at Your LinkedN Driving Instructor, for an innovative conversation on how to best put LinkedIn to work in your career endeavors.

Tuesday, April 26

2–3 p.m. ET
Virtual

Cost: Free

Registration:  https://www.osu.edu/alumni/activities-and-events/events/2022/job-club-linkedin-and-the-seasoned-professional.html

 

 

Beginning with the End in Mind – Advice for Non-Profit Professionals from Mindy Derr

One must begin with the end in mind.

This is my most consistent advice for professionals seeking to build a career in the non-profit space. Ask yourself: How do organizational leaders perceive their legacy in the role of leadership? What is the Executive’s  mission, vision and plan for perpetuity?

I founded Fore Hope, Inc. in 1989 for my father, Guy. Fore Hope was a small grassroots non-profit organization utilizing golf as an instrument for health recovery. My dad became ill shortly after retirement and his spirit was crushed. Dad was an avid and proficient golfer.

His aptitude and love of the game have carried over into our family heritage. The Derr family is known for golf!

After my service with the Boy Scouts of America in northern Ohio, I decided to start Fore Hope with a focus on therapeutic golf for those with chronic health conditions and disabilities.

Thousands have been served in the 32 + years since our founding and that continues today. Fore Hope was absorbed by the OhioHealth Healthcare System in Columbus, Ohio in 2017. Fore Hope was the first ever grassroots therapy golf program…originating on a card table, to travel among the ranks of a nationally recognized golf program. Fore Hope now resides within the OhioHealth Neuroscience Center for Wellness.

Giving up “my child” (Fore Hope) was not easy. However, as discussions ensued with OhioHealth, I felt the comfort of knowing that our organization would go on, serve more people and keep alive my dad’s legacy. Fore Hope had a niche and remained true to the mission of therapeutic golf. Fortunately, OhioHealth recognized the value of our services, unique offerings and that our organization was an appropriate fit for their wellness programs.

Fore Hope became a new family within OhioHealth and the “start over” within a healthcare system was daunting but exciting as well. Today, I remain an Advisor to OhioHealth Fore Hope.

Populations served throughout our Fore Hope history were those aging and with brain injury, cancer, MS, Parkinson’s, stroke and other injuries and illnesses. Golf is magic and improves balance, cognition, mobility, self-confidence, and fosters socialization. The joy that comes with hitting a little white ball is incredible as one focuses on the accomplishment and not the deficits in his/her life. Golf is a validated tool for Recreation Therapy and improves quality of life!

I know first-hand how illness can change one’s life. My recent diagnosis of MS was difficult to comprehend and yet, knowing that I could walk and play golf again gave me the much needed HOPE to move forward each day.

Over the years, Fore Hope provided services to adult day care and assisted living centers, inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation settings, Recreation and Parks and schools. Fore Hope offered outdoor programs at local golf courses, golf ranges and putting areas. Our estimate is that 10,000 persons have been a part of Fore Hope programs along with care partners and families.

Lessons in Leadership from Originating a Non-Profit

I have learned so much over the years with Fore Hope and would like to share a little bit about the “secret sauce” of operations and delivery in a non-profit world. Leadership must be that…lead by example and have the ignited passion that excites those around you…your staff, board, investors and your clients. One must be a risk taker, and yet be a “quantified risker.”

Non-Profit leadership must have the ability to see the big picture and yet be effective in detail. Community trust arrives through exemplary services and brand recognition. Validation of the wonderful work of the organization is necessary and begets resources that encourage growth and wider community outreach. Funding for programs arrives in a myriad of ways, but the  best way in my opinion, is the awareness of mission need, connection to services provided, and the involvement of potential investors. Investors/donors want to realize their gifts make a difference in transforming lives, hence, the reason for being.

The view from 30,000 feet?

Fore Hope began with the end in mind and we reached for the stars. We shared the big picture and built consensus among the masses.  Fore Hope staff and board searched for those

like-minded partners to forward the mission and continue to serve. Mission perpetuity, like OhioHealth Fore Hope as a stellar example, transcends all the struggles and ultimately

“gives back” to those who invested over the years. Our organization wanted the public to see, feel and know, that this journey of non-profit impact prevails and continues to enhance community wellness.

Remember, without cause, there would be not effect. One’s legacy as a leader, is one withstanding.

 

Melinda “Mindy” Derr
Ohio State Alumna,  Class of 1981
Founder and Advisor – OhioHealth Fore Hope

Resource Spotlight – Getting Hired in Healthcare for Veterans

As a veteran who has fearlessly and faithfully served our country, you may be wondering what a post-military career looks like for you.  If you are interested in pursuing a career in healthcare, we invite you to explore a new resource from EduMed.

Healthcare Careers for Student Veterans: An Online Guide (edumed.org)  is an step-by-step guide to launching a civilian career in the healthcare industry for veterans.  This in-depth guide offers advice on military-friendly degree programs, interview advice, skills assessments, and more.  Visit EduMed at the link above to take advantage of this excellent resource, and visit our veterans resources tab for more tools to support you in your post-military career development journey!

 

EduMed Guide:  Healthcare Careers for Student Veterans: An Online Guide (edumed.org)

Veteran’s Resources:  For Veterans | Welcome to Career Corner! (osu.edu)

From the Director’s Desk – Don’t Forget Your Job Search Etiquette!

In the age of texting and in shorthand and immediacy on social media, don’t forget the basic manners that your parents taught you…and your career coach! A positive and grateful attitude will get you far in job search and may even land you the position.

Always say, “thank you”.

A must in your interview follow up is to send a thank you to your interviewers. But prior to that step, it is important to express thanks along the job search process. Networking is a critical step and skill in your job search strategy. Think of all the people who have given you advice and recommended others that can add to your network. Hiring managers are the ultimate contacts, but don’t forget the people along the way who connected you to that hiring manager or opportunity. This could be family, friends, acquaintances, faculty, advisors, and colleagues. A simple “thank you” can go a long way. Always respond with a note to someone who has sent you advice. And if you miss that step, then you may not receive help in the future.

Remember, you are building your personal board of directors for your entire career journey. So, keep your network in the loop along the way, to include when you land a position. Express gratitude for contributing to your success.

In a fast-paced era of communication, don’t drop the ball. Networking is a give and take exchange. Keep your network alive. Your life will be richer for it!

 

Alumni Spotlight – Meet Melissa Trahyn!

Degree: Bachelor, Music Education
Graduation Year: 1998
Current Occupation: Educational Technology Specialist

 

  1. – What brought you to The Ohio State University?

I went to Ohio State to be in the Marching Band.  In my junior year of high school in Kentucky, we visited the Stadium Bandroom, spoke with then director, Dr. Woods, and saw a performance of the OSUMB.  I knew, from that point on, that I wanted to go to Ohio State to be in the Marching Band.

 

  1. – How did your experiences at Ohio State shape your career path?

I came into my current career after 20 years on another path.  While at Ohio State, I got the international bug and traveled outside of the US a lot through my involvement with Cru (then Campus Crusade for Christ).  That led to me spending a year after graduation teaching English in Central Asia.  Upon my return, I taught for 2 years in public and private schools in Indianapolis, but still wanted to be in more of an international environment.  In 2001 took a job at Butler University which started my 20-year stint in International Education at the university level.  I have held positions in English as a Second Language programs, International Student Services Offices and Study Abroad organizations.

During the pandemic of 2020, international education took a big hit and I found myself out of work for the first time in over 16 years.  I took a career pivot in July 2020 and accepted a position as an Educational Technology Specialist, something I had been learning, using, and informally training for in my previous position through experiences and opportunities that were afforded to me.  Now I work with faculty at the Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, to design online courses that are not only pedagogically sound, but engaging to the students through a virtual environment.

 

  1. – What advice do you have for OSU alumni and students interested in pursuing a career in your field?

Every job you take, every position you are in, you are learning.  Never stop learning as the path you think you want may not be the path you end up on 20 years later.  I’m an educator at heart and have found myself in a variety of fields in education, from teaching K-8 music, to teaching ESL, to working with international students and study abroad students, and now working with faculty.  Find what you love; find what brings you joy and pursue that.  My current field of EdTech is really taking off since the pandemic.  I find I’m energized by helping others find connections and engagement and have found that my current field of EdTech is a catalyst for engagement in the classroom.

 

  1. – What is your greatest professional accomplishment?

I think my greatest professional accomplishment is that I have never stopped learning.  I have recently been accepted into a doctoral program at Indiana University in Instructional Systems Technology which will commence in Fall 2021.  I never thought I’d get to this point of pursuing a doctoral degree and am very proud of where I am now.

 

  1. – What inspires you in your profession?

An idea or concept that “clicks” for someone is so inspiring.  I love that “lightbulb” moment where people finally get it!  I want to jump up and down when that happens.  Whether it’s a musical piece that finally came together, someone communicating for the first time in English, or a faculty member making a meaningful connection with a student virtually – those moments inspire me and keep me going.

 

  1. – In what ways have you stayed connected with OSU after your graduation?

It’s taken me some time to get to where I am today.  Upon graduation, I immediately moved overseas.  When I came home, my parents were living in a city and state I had never lived in, and I was without work.  After getting married and having kids, time just flew right by…but in the summer of 2020, I felt the urge to reconnect when I saw an announcement for a TBDBITL Alumni Club Board of Governors (BOG) At Large Position.  I reached out, put my name in the hat, and was voted in during the September 2020 BOG meeting!

Since then, I’ve been passionate about helping others who may not live in Columbus, reconnect.  I have done this by spearheading the social media for the TBDBITL Alumni Club.  I revived the Club’s Facebook page and created a LinkedIn page in December 2020.  Since then, our Facebook page has increased its followers by 20% and our LinkedIn page has gained 241 new followers since its inception.  Our 2021 goal for these two platforms is to see 1000 followers on Facebook and 500 on LinkedIn by year’s end.  Since March 2021, I have also revived the Instagram and Twitter feeds for the Club and have seen our interactions and followership grow with each post.  We currently have an alumni campaign highlighting “The Best Damn Alumni” each month.  This social media campaign runs on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram and has been a great collaboration between the Awards Committee and Communications of the TBDBITL Alumni Club.  I’m so excited to be serving in this way and it’s very rewarding to see the conversations going on between alumni on these platforms.

You can find us and help us meet our follower goals at:

Career Management Staff Receives Diversity, Equity, Inclusion Certification

Often in the Office of Alumni Career Management, we talk to clients about the importance of continuing professional development, and a commitment to consistent personal growth. We are also committed to doing this in our personal lives as well.

In that spirit, we are excited to amount that both Marilyn and Kioshana have recently completed the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Workplace certificate program offered through the University of South Florida’s Muma College of Business! The seven-week program, created in partnership with the Tampa Bay Lightning and Jabil, focused on ways for organizations to create diverse workplaces, address equity issues, and foster inclusivity.  In order to obtain this certificate, we completed seven two-hour modules related to important topics in the DE&I workplace, including emotional intelligence, stereotypes and biases, community outreach, and crafting a sustainable business model. We were also tested on each of the cornerstone topics and earned 1.4 continuing education credits as part of this program.

In this office, and at the university at large, we pride ourselves on our ongoing commitment toward making the workplace a more equitable and healthy place for professionals to thrive, and this training will help support that mission going forward.  For more information on this certification, visit the website here.

Alumni Perspective – “Find Your Marching Band”

The following is a contribution from alumnae Melissa D. Trahyn (Fordham), a 1998 graduate of the School of Music and current member of the TBDBITL Alumni Club’s Board of Governors. Read on to hear her advice on life, career, and remaining engaged with the alumni community – no matter where your journey takes you!

***

I was a student at Ohio State in the mid-90s and a member of TBDBITL, playing trombone in Q-Row.  I went to OSU for the sole purpose of being in the OSUMB (and to study Music Education, of course) ….and I was cut my first year.  I worked my tail off and got in my sophomore year, spending the next three years in The Ohio State University Marching Band.  Three years that tested my perseverance, my endurance, my physical limits, and my mental capacity.  These three years thrilled me to no end and fed my love of performing.  I LOVED band and in particular, marching band.

Fast forward 23 years, 26 countries, one marriage, three kids, a master’s degree, and six jobs later…I’m now the voice and driver of the TBDBITL Alumni Club’s social media public pages.

Two years ago, I was attending a leadership course through Kelley School of Business at IUPUI, dissatisfied with my job (but not admitting it yet) when someone in the course, who had just met me asked me when the last time I was happy and involved in something that I enjoyed.  Without skipping a beat, I said “Ohio State’s Marching Band”.  He then proceeded to say something that has stuck with me to this day, “We need to find you your next Marching Band”.

Losing my job in April 2020 during the COVID-19 shutdown and pandemic was a blessing in disguise.  I started seeking meaningful connections, but the TBDBITL Alumni Club’s presence on Facebook and LinkedIn, the two social media platforms I engaged with, were slim to none.  How can you be involved if you don’t know how?

In September 2020, I was elected as an At-Large Member to the TBDBITL Alumni Club’s Board of Governors, with a desire for engagement and helping others engage.  See, I don’t live in Columbus, or even Ohio, which makes it hard (or so it seemed) to be involved in TBDBITL activities.  I didn’t even know that these leadership positions in the Alumni Band existed or that I could apply until I saw Past President Derrick Mills’ post on Facebook – and of course I immediately reached out.

I wanted to be involved, to be connected, to be engaged, and found a way to do it from Indianapolis.  Through my discussions with President Zacke Naughton and Vice President, T.J. Hersch, I found my voice and excitement for engagement, creating meaningful connections, and for reaching those who may feel like I did – far away and removed from TBDBITL.  I have a passion for helping people feel connected and in using my passion, I became connected!

As the voice of the Club’s social media, I have learned so much about social media in general, and the different platforms in particular.  I have re-engaged our public Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages and created our public LinkedIn page.  Since the revival and renewal of our public voice on social media in December 2020, we now have a monthly social media plan with regular posting, in addition to ad-hoc, in-the-moment posts.  In conjunction with our Awards Committee, we have established a new monthly Alumni Spotlight series, the “Best Damn Alumni”, which premiered in April 2021.   Our long-term goal for 2021 is to see 500 followers on LinkedIn and 1,000 followers on Facebook, our two primary platforms.  At the time of this article, we are at 215 followers for LinkedIn and 708 for Facebook…well on our way to meeting our goal by the end of 2021.

If I can say one thing to anyone out there who’s feeling disconnected and unengaged – “Find your Marching Band”.  It will make all the difference!