NYU Makes Medical School Free for all Medical Students

Posted August 19, 2018

Tuition alone for four years of medical school has increased up to fourfold in the past three decades.

People have already applauded the NYU Medical School scholarship online.

The move is a first among major USA medical schools, reports The Wall Street Journal. While that figure includes estimated shortages for both specialists and general practitioners, the NYU program could theoretically reduce the burden of entry to either and, the hope goes, free up would-be doctors to pursue the careers they want to begin with. In the USA, about 72 percent of 2018 medical school graduates had an average debt of $195,000 in loans, according to student surveys by the Association of American Medical Colleges cited by WSJ.

At the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine, which focuses on training physician scientists, all students have received full-tuition scholarships since 2008 regardless of financial need.

"If you're faced with debt that you're likely to have into your 50s, it's got to have an influence on what you choose to do", Lee Goldman, dean of the Columbia University medical school tells the paper.

New York University in New York City is covering tuition for all its medical students regardless of their economic background in an effort to alleviate the nationwide shortage of medical researchers and primary care physicians, the Wall Street Journal reports.

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"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", Robert I. Grossman, dean of the medical school and chief executive officer of N.Y.U.

Other high-profile schools have sought in recent years to make their pricey programs more accessible.

Many surveys have shown that medical school graduates gravitate to the more lucrative specialties, in part to pay off enormous student debts.

"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 Grossman. "I think a lot of schools would love to be able to do this, but it's more hard for some schools".

NYU spent approximately $552 million past year in institutional funds specifically for student aid (undergraduate, graduate and doctoral) purposes. "We hope that many other academic medical centers will soon choose to join us on this path".

The move was made possible because of donations from more than 2,000 trustees, alumni and others.

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