Blamed on 'delays in the government’s student debt relief and return to payment programs'

LINCOLN -- Nelnet student loan managing agency is looking to furlough or release up to 350 workers, the company announce Wednesday. 

The announcement came as "changes to manage excess staff capacity due to delays in the government's student debt relief and return to repayment programs," according to a Nelnet press release.

The press release says about 350 associates who were hired within the last six months will be laid off, and about 210 associates will be terminated for performance reasons in the company's Nelnet Diversified Services (NDS). The approximately 350 associates who will be laid off were hired within the last six months for the primary purpose of meeting the anticipated increase in student loan borrower activity, which was further delayed. A 60-day working notification was given to these associates whose performance was not a factor. Performance was used to identify approximately 210 of the impacted associates. 

“These decisions are never easy,” said Ben Kiser, Nelnet’s executive director of corporate communications. “With the delay of federal student loan repayment through much of 2023, regrettably, it isn’t feasible to maintain increased staffing levels for work that will remain on hold for a significant amount of time.”

Potential impact on the Sidney staff is unknown at this time. Kiser said the company has not disclosed how many staff are impacted by location. However, most of the impacted associates are outside of Nebraska.

Kiser added, “We will continue to actively search for opportunities within the organization to redeploy eligible associates, and we hope many will consider reapplying to join our NDS team when repayment does resume.”

Nelnet remains committed to supporting the millions of federal student loan borrowers who will be entering repayment when the temporary pause ends later in the year. No additional changes related to staff capacity are planned.