Higher Education

Most Johns Hopkins Medical Students to Receive Free Tuition After $1 Billion Gift

Author: Editors Desk, Alyssa Lukpat Source: WSJ:
July 8, 2024 at 22:41
Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. PHOTO: PATRICK SEMANSKY/ASSOCIATED PRESS
Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. PHOTO: PATRICK SEMANSKY/ASSOCIATED PRESS

The school said it received the donation from Michael Bloomberg’s philanthropic organization

A majority of medical students at Johns Hopkins University are set to receive free tuition after the school received a $1 billion gift from Bloomberg Philanthropies, making Hopkins the latest medical school to go tuition free because of a large donation.

Hopkins said Monday that students from families earning under $300,000 would receive free tuition starting in the fall. Students whose families earn as much as $175,000 will have their living expenses covered. The school estimates nearly two-thirds of its students would qualify for either of the benefits. 

A growing number of philanthropists and medical schools are pushing to make education free for aspiring doctors and reduce the financial barriers that can deter them. Buoyed by donations, the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and the medical schools at New York University and Columbia University have given their students free tuition or scholarships if they have financial need.

The tuition for the medical school at Hopkins is nearly $65,000 a year. Students received updated financial-aid packages Monday showing, for most of them, a lower cost of attendance, said Dr. Theodore DeWeese, the dean of the medical school..

The cost of medical school has kept aspiring doctors out of the field, where they can graduate with hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. By offering financial freedom to more students, schools can give medical students the flexibility to choose jobs in important but lower-paying fields like internal medical and pediatrics.

Billionaire Michael Bloomberg’s philanthropic organization said Monday that the U.S. has a shortage of medical professionals yet the cost of attending school for these jobs is often too high.

“By reducing the financial barriers to these essential fields, we can free more students to pursue careers they’re passionate about,” he said.


Michael Bloomberg has donated billions to several causes through his philanthropic organization.PHOTO: CHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES
Michael Bloomberg has donated billions to several causes through his philanthropic organization.PHOTO: CHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES

His organization in 2018 donated $1.8 billion to Hopkins to offer more financial aid for undergraduate students. Bloomberg earned his bachelor’s degree in engineering from Hopkins.

Including the $1 billion gift, Bloomberg has given $4.55 billion in total to Hopkins, the university said. Hopkins’s public health school is named after him. He used to be on the university’s board of trustees.

Hopkins President Ronald Daniels said the school had been in talks with Bloomberg Philanthropies about the donation for more than a year. In return for the donation, Daniels said Bloomberg asked that Hopkins use the money to recruit the best and brightest students.

“The magic of this gift is it reduces any disproportionate impact that high levels of education-related debt will have on students upon graduation in terms of what specialties they decide to pursue or even regions of the country they’ll decide to pursue,” Daniels said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal.

Bloomberg has used his philanthropic organization, Bloomberg Philanthropies, to donate billions to several causes including public health, the environment and improving city governments. Most of the profits from his eponymous company, Bloomberg L.P., would support the work of Bloomberg Philanthropies.

Hopkins said Bloomberg’s donation would also be used to expand financial aid for nursing and public-health graduate students, in addition to graduate students in other fields.

“This new scholarship formula will ensure the most talented aspiring doctors representing the broadest and deepest range of socioeconomic and geographic backgrounds have the opportunity to graduate debt-free,” Hopkins said.

You did not use the site, Click here to remain logged. Timeout: 60 second