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Bloomberg gives $1 billion to Hopkins to make tuition free for most medical students

A sign stands in front of part of the Johns Hopkins Hospital complex in Baltimore.
Patrick Semansky
A sign stands in front of part of the Johns Hopkins Hospital complex in Baltimore.

Most students pursuing medical degrees at Johns Hopkins University will receive free tuition, thanks to a $1 billion gift from businessman Michael Bloomberg's philanthropic organization.

Starting in the fall semester, students who come from households earning less than $300,000 will have their tuition paid for, while students whose households bring in less than $175,000 will have their tuition, fees and living expenses paid for, the university announced Monday.

Nearly two-thirds of current and incoming students to the medical school will be eligible for the benefits.

“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.

Johns Hopkins’ medical school graduates had an average of $105,000 in student loan debt in the 2023-2024 school year, the university said.

Bloomberg graduated from Johns Hopkins in 1964, and went on to co-found Bloomberg L.P., an international software, data, financial and media company. He also served as the mayor of New York City from 2002 to 2013.

His gift will also go toward more financial aid for graduate students in the schools of public health and nursing, education, engineering, business, government and policy, arts and sciences and international studies, as well as the Peabody Institute, an arts conservatory.

Bloomberg has donated heavily to the university in the past, including a $1.8 billion gift in 2018 for undergraduate financial aid. He additionally partnered with the school in 2021 for the Vivien Thomas Scholars Initiative, which helps bring historically underrepresented students into STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) industries. That program has a $150 million endowment.

Copyright 2024 NPR

Ayana Archie
[Copyright 2024 NPR]

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