Top School of Medicine is now paying tuition for all of its med students

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by Ruxandra Helici

Posted on August 23, 2018

Top School of Medicine is now paying tuition for all of its med students

The NYU School of Medicine just announced that it is offering full-tuition scholarships to all current and future students in its MD degree program regardless of need or merit—a bold effort to simultaneously address the rising costs of medical education and still attract the best and brightest students to careers in medicine.

The announcement from the medical school’s trustees, leaders, and faculty was delivered earlier this week to first-year medical students and family members as a surprise ending to the annual White Coat Ceremony, where each new student is presented with a white lab coat to mark the start of their medical education and training.

“This decision recognizes a moral imperative that must be addressed, as institutions place an increasing debt burden on young people who aspire to become physicians,” says Robert I. Grossman, CEO of NYU Langone Health.

It is the only top 10–ranked medical school in the nation to offer the free tuition. According to the New York Times, the school has already raised $450 million of the $600 million necessary to finance the historic initiative thanks to more than 2,500 trustees, alumni, and friends.

The yearly tuition costs covered by the scholarship are $55,018, but annual room and board will not be included. The announcement comes as a huge relief to the 95 new students who were admitted to the school and the 350 students who still have three or more years left of their degree programs.

According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, 75 percent of all doctors in the U.S. graduated with debt in 2017. Additionally, the median cost of medical education (tuition and fees) for private medical school is $59,605 and the median current debt of a graduating student is $202,000. What’s more, 21% of doctors graduating from a private school do so with more than $300,000 of educational debt.

“A population as diverse as ours is best served by doctors from all walks of life, we believe, and aspiring physicians and surgeons should not be prevented from pursuing a career in medicine because of the prospect of overwhelming financial debt,” says Dr. Grossman.

Offering full-tuition scholarships for current and future students in its MD degree program is the most recent step NYU School of Medicine has taken to transform medical education for the better. “We believe that with our tuition-free initiative, we have taken a necessary, rational step that addresses a critical need to train the most talented physicians, unencumbered by crushing debt,” says Dr. Grossman. 

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