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The Government will be reviewing the lending policy of the Student’s Loan Bureau (SLB) to make it possible for beneficiaries to guarantee their own loans.
Prime Minister, Bruce Golding, speaking in the House of Representatives yesterday (March 31), noted that while SLB had done a “tremendous job” in assisting people to access tertiary education, there were still a large number of persons, who, because of the poor circumstances from which they originate, were unable to find somebody who was willing to be a guarantor for their loans.
“The SLB is to develop some modalities whereby people will guarantee their own loans but with certain caveats that we intend to institute, so that when you become qualified, it is going to be more difficult for you to shirk your responsibility once you are employed,” he stated.
Acknowledging the difficulty of some students to find employment to repay their loans, the Prime Minister said he had requested that the Bureau’s management develop a regime to deal with such beneficiaries.
“There is no point in hounding that person down. There has to be some arrangements to accommodate that particular situation,” he pointed out.
The Prime Minister said that the Government would have to start to influence the direction of the loan funds to training in areas where there was a shortage or for which there was market demand, with preferential terms for those areas of study.
“So, the person, who wants to come in and study some skill for which we have an overabundance is not going to be treated on the same basis as someone, who wants to study say, pharmacology or study to be an agronomist, or get into areas that are critical to our development on which we are short,” he outlined.
The SLB, instituted in 1970, is Jamaica’s premier student loan financing organization committed to ensuring that qualified, needy Jamaican students have access to financial assistance to pursue tertiary education.

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