Mike Bloomberg donates $1 billion to cover Johns Hopkins medical school tuition for students

Most Johns Hopkins medical students will get free tuition following a $1 billion gift from billionaire Mike Bloomberg.

Billionaire Mike Bloomberg donated $1 billion to Johns Hopkins University.The gift will make medical school tuition free for students with family incomes under $300,000.It’ll also cover living expenses for students with family incomes under $175,000.

Most medical students at Johns Hopkins University won’t have to worry about student loans.

On Monday, Johns Hopkins announced that Bloomberg Philanthropies — founded by billionaire Michael Bloomberg — will donate $1 billion to make tuition free for medical students with family incomes under $300,000 a year, beginning fall 2024.

The gift will also allow Johns Hopkins to cover living expenses for medical students with family incomes under $175,000 a year. According to the university, nearly two-thirds of current and incoming medical students will qualify for free tuition, or free tuition and covered living expenses.

“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 statement.

“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,” he said.

The university’s announcement said students who are eligible for the benefits will receive updated financial aid packages this summer.

Going to medical school can be costly, leaving borrowers with about $200,000 in student debt on average upon graduation, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges. While medical jobs are typically high paying, a career is not guaranteed, potentially leaving borrowers with six-figure balances that can surge due to high interest.

Along with Johns Hopkins, other schools have received philanthropic donations to address high education costs that can be barriers to pursuing further education. For example, Ruth Gottesman — philanthropist and widow of David Gottesman, an early Berkshire Hathaway investor — donated David’s $1 billion in Berkshire Hathaway stock to Bronx Medical School in February to cover its students’ tuition forever.

Some schools have also been taking matters into their own hands to address high student debt loads for their undergraduates. Princeton, Amherst, and Harvard are among a growing number of schools that have eliminated student loans from their financial aid packages entirely, instead shifting to grants that students do not need to repay.

Monday’s announcement will build on previous donations Johns Hopkins has received over the past few years to reduce student-debt loads for its graduates. Through that aid, the average total student debt for medical school graduates declined to about $105,000 in the 2023-2024 academic school year, the university said.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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