Start your tech career with $0 upfront

We've got you covered with diverse options from our partners, ensuring our programs are accessible to everyone, regardless of their bank account.

Flexible Payment Options

Flexible options to cover your program costs

Ascent Funding’s Zero Percent Loan

Learners in our IT Support, Data Analytics, UX Design and Cybersecurity programs can apply for Ascent Funding’s Zero Percent Loan to cover the program costs. Plus, you’ll only start repaying your loan when you’re making at least $40k per year.


Some employers and organizations, such as Amazon, may cover some or all of the program costs for eligible learners. Please speak to your employer to see if they offer sponsorship for programs such as Merit America.


For those who prefer to pay for their Merit America program upfront in full with their own funds, self-funding is also an option.

How much does it cost?

How much does it cost?

$5700 is all you need to join our IT Support, Data Analytics, UX Design, Project Management, and Cybersecurity programs. Whether you pay upfront, utilize Ascent’s Zero Percent Loan, or secure sponsorship, the cost stays consistent. Plus, your program cost may be lower than $5700 if you receive sponsorship from an employer.

What is the Zero Percent Loan?

What is Ascent Funding?

Ascent Funding is a third-party lending organization that seeks to provide access to education for millions of underserved students every year.

Ascent Funding is not affiliated with Merit America but is partnering with Merit America to ensure equitable financing for borrowers who may otherwise not be able to easily access Merit America’s programming.

What is Ascent's Zero Percent Loan?

If you choose Ascent’s Zero Percent Loan, here’s a look at what you can expect.
Ascent Funding Zero Percent Loan
Down payment$0
Monthly in-program payments$0
Income threshold
After completing the program, you won’t pay unless your income is above this level.
The equivalent of at least $40,000 per year
Monthly post-program payments
This is the amount you’ll pay each month once you enter repayment.
Up to $95
Number of payments
This is the maximum number of payments you’ll make if your income stays
above the threshold for the entire contract length.
Up to 60
Payment cap
This is the maximum you’d pay if your income stays
above the threshold for the entire contract length.
Contract length
Your payment obligation is waived after this time
has passed – even if you’ve paid nothing.
60 months
$0 Down
Please note that Merit America does not provide or administer or otherwise control the terms of the loan. Prospective borrowers should review the terms and conditions of the Zero Percent Loan program provided by Ascent Funding on their website.

$0 Down

If you choose Ascent Funding’s Zero Percent Loan, you won’t make any payments until three months after completing or exiting your Merit America program. Once you start repaying the loan, you will make monthly payments without incurring any interest charges, and if you happen to become unemployed, you can delay payment. Throughout the loan period, the interest rate will remain at 0%.

When do I have to decide?

When do I have to decide?


Apply to the program

Apply to the program and learn more. We provide ways to learn more about the payment options throughout the application process. If you’re accepted, you begin the “Foundation” phase, our trial period, to see if Merit America is right for you. You don’t sign anything at this point.


Immerse yourself

The “Immersion” phase of the program, where most of the technical content from partners and professional content from Merit America are taught, is next. This phase lasts 10-17 weeks, depending on the program. Before entering this phase, you will commit to paying for your program costs, either by obtaining a loan or paying full upfront.


Search for jobs

“Job Success” begins after the technical and professional learning is complete. During this 3-month phase, you interview with our employer partners and search for jobs with your coach.


Start your career

If you have opted to take Ascent’s Zero Percent Loan, you’ll start making fixed monthly payments only once you’re earning $40,000 or more.

Opportunity For All

Opportunity for All

Merit America exists to support learners to transition out of low-wage jobs into careers they love. We believe that cost should not be a barrier to your career transition. We offer learner-friendly options to cover your cost, including upfront sponsorship, Ascent’s Zero Percent Loan, and direct payment. If none of these options are available to you, Merit America has set aside a limited number of spaces for our Opportunity for All program. If you apply for an Ascent Zero Percent Loan and do not qualify, are not sponsored by your employer, and cannot pay in full upfront, you can apply for the program, which will cover 100% of the cost for Merit America. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

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