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This Prestigious Med School Is Now Offering Free Tuition For Most Students

The cost of higher education is a serious financial burden for many students, especially for those looking into graduate-level degrees. Attending medical school, especially, is typically very cost-prohibitive, leaving many students unable to pursue their dreams due to finances. However, as of this week, one prestigious university is making huge strides to make med school attendance more affordable. 

On July 8, Bloomberg Philanthropies announced a financial gift of $1 billion to Johns Hopkins Medical School, allowing most students to attend for free. This donation will ensure free med school tuition for students whose families earn less than $300,000 annually. It will also cover living expenses along with tuition for students whose families make less than $175,000 per year. 

This financial gift will also increase financial aid for students at Johns Hopkins’ schools of nursing, public health, and other graduate schools, according to a statement released by Bloomberg Philanthropies. The aid is expected to take effect as soon as this coming fall.

According to Bloomberg Philanthropies founder Michael Bloomberg — the billionaire, former mayor of New York City, and 1964 Johns Hopkins University alum — more graduate-level education in healthcare is what the U.S. needs in order to recover from damage from the Covid-19 pandemic. The donation is intended to combat two challenges that go hand-in-hand: declining education and declining health.

“As the U.S. struggles to recover from a disturbing decline in life expectancy, our country faces a serious shortage of doctors, nurses, and public health professionals — and yet, the high cost of medical, nursing, and graduate school too often bars students from enrolling,” Bloomberg said in a July 8 Bloomberg Philanthropie press release about the donation. “By reducing the financial barriers to these essential fields, we can free more students to pursue careers they’re passionate about — and enable them to serve more of the families and communities who need them the most.”

According to the press release, almost two-thirds of students seeking an M.D. from Johns Hopkins qualify for financial aid, and on average, students graduate with around $104,000 in student loan debt. With this new donation, however, the average student loan debt is expected to decrease to $60,279 by 2029, according to CNN.

This is not the first hefty donation that Bloomberg has made to his alma mater. In 2018, Bloomberg Philanthropies donated $1.8 billion to Johns Hopkins University to provide financial aid to undergraduate students.
Additionally, Johns Hopkins is not the first medical university to receive a gift like this. In February, the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York received a $1 billion donation from former faculty member Dr. Ruth Gottesman, allowing some students to attend the university free of charge. Additionally, NYU’s School of Medicine became the first top ten medical school to offer free tuition to accepted students in 2018. With donations like these, more prospective medical students will be able to pursue their passions and hopefully bring more wellness to the world.

Cate Scott

Syracuse '26

Cate Scott is a third-year Syracuse University student pursuing a dual degree in journalism and creative writing. Actively contributing to multiple campus publications and constantly learning about the journalism field in her courses, she is dedicated to expanding her writing skills across various disciplines and formats. She is currently based in Greater Boston and is interested in exploring magazine writing, politics, investigative work, and culture. Cate has been reading and writing poetry and personal essays for years. She hopes to pursue creative writing as well as her journalistic passions in her future career. Beyond her academic pursuits, Cate is a runner and seasoned music nerd. She is on her school's club sailing team and is a proud and active sorority member. The highlights of her weeks include hosting her college radio show, exploring Syracuse, finding time to play her guitar, and doing it all with her roommates and best friends. A native New Englander, Cate spends her summers taking the train into Boston and hiking with her German Shepherd, Maggie.