Educational Interest-Free Loan Lights the Way for a Bright Future
Sammy Pappert who secured the first fully disbursed interest-free education loan from Hebrew Free Loan of Austin. Photo Credit: Sammy Pappert
By Wendy R. Corn
The issue of higher education affordability is an ongoing conversation across the nation. Even with savings and scholarships, many still find themselves needing financial loans to attain a higher education degree.
Higher education comes with steep costs that may deter people from achieving their goals. In response to this growing need for educational loans, Hebrew Free Loan Association (HFLA) established a program designed to help students achieve their educational goals.
Austin native and recent law school graduate Sammy Pappert was the first recipient of the first fully disbursed interest-free education loan which he used to cover Law School expenses. He heard about HFLA while he and his mother were looking for low-interest loans. “We had heard about HFLA through the community,” said Pappert.
The idea of Jews lending Jews money without interest is a distinctly Jewish tradition, based on biblical principles. HFLA affords a mitzvah opportunity to enable Jewish community members the dignity of re-paying a loan interest-free. Having grown up in the Austin Jewish community, participated in BBYO, and a former member of Troop 28 that met at JCC, Pappert says he was a great candidate for the loan program.
Since graduating from law school, Pappert has begun working at Hegwood Law Group outside Houston where he works on trusts, estate planning, elder law, Medicaid and probate. “I find this work in preparing for future generations heartwarming,” said Pappert. “I feel like I’m 25% a therapist and 75% a lawyer. No one is ever ready for death or wants to talk about it. I like helping people navigate what to do, how to save nontaxable education funds for children and grandchildren so someone’s legacy can be influential.”
Grateful for the opportunity provided to Pappert by HFLA, he says that he’s shared his experience with others hoping they too can benefit. “I tell them it’s like working for a little bit– It’s as if you don’t have to worry about the future of that payment knowing you’ll pay it back.”
Members attending a JAMen event. Courtesy: Jay Rubin. Burt Kunik and his wife Mary moved to Austin in 2014. A prominent endodontist, business executive and Jewish leader in Houston, the McAllen, Texas native relocated to Central Texas, to live closer to children and...
By Maura Kinney, LCSW – Grief and Loss Therapist The Death Over Dinner Project was founded by entrepreneur and activist Michael Hebb in response to the startling statistic that, while 75 percent of Americans say they want to die at home, only 25 percent actually do....
Left to right: Harriet Saikin, Rabbi Neil F. Blumofe and Mary Jane Saikin at the Shalom Austin Adults 60+ Passover Luncheon. Credit: Jolie Estes By BJ Friedman Rabbi Neil F. Blumofe and Congregation Agudas Achim (CAA) will celebrate 25 years of collaboration with a...