Eau Claire also in the survey for the best job to have that student loan paid off and make a living wage.

About 7 in 10 nurses take out student loans to pay for their graduate program, according to a 2017 report from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. Also in the same report, 50% stated their biggest concern after graduation was repaying and trying to have a plan to do that.

Some relocate to find work, some have to do something else until a job opens. Some can't find a place that pays a healthy salary. Duluth has shown up in the top 10 best small cities to work and pay back student loans.

According to the student loan hero report, certain questions had to be answered:

  • What annual salary can a nurse expect to earn?
  • How much demand is there for nurses?
  • How far will a nurse’s salary go when paying for goods and services?
  • The report relied on three data points from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to help formulate the answers to the three questions. Average annual wage: The median pay for registered nurses nationally in 2017 was $70,000, according to the BLS.
  • The location quotient compares the employment of nurses in a city to the average for the nation. If a city reports a location quotient greater than 1.0, which is the national average, nurses are more likely to be in demand in that city. Cities with marks below 1.0 are less likely to offer as many employment options.
  • Price parity refers to varying costs of goods and services in cities, which in turn affects the purchasing power of your wages (or how much you can actually buy with your paycheck). If a city’s regional price parity is less than 100, which is the average, goods and services are less expensive in that city (so a large paycheck will go further). If a city reports a mark greater than 100, goods and services are more expensive there.

Here's the list:

1. Bay City, Michigan
2. Saginaw, Michigan
3. Greenville, North Carolina
4. Johnstown, Pennsylvania
5. Cumberland, Maryland
6. Florence, South Carolina
7. Duluth, Minnesota
Duluth cracked the top 10 because it reported strong marks in each of the three data categories under consideration.There's also a fourth reason: the Minnesota Health Care Loan Forgiveness program. It offers repayment assistance of up to $20,000 over four years to nurses who work at least two years in a nursing home.
8. Hanford, California
9. Alexandria, Louisiana
10. Eau Claire, Wisconsin

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