Washington University School of Medicine (WUSM) announced free tuition for up to half its future students. That is to say, WUSM has allocated $100 million in scholarships over the next ten years. This allocation will provide free tuition for roughly half of its incoming class. Currently, about 15% of WUSM students receive full-tuition scholarships. Consequently, this will be a big rise in full-tuition scholarships and further should reduce the school’s already low average graduate debt.
To clarify, these funds are aimed specifically at low-income applicants and students of color. WUSM insists this plan has been in place since before NYU announced its free medical school tuition policy this past August. Additionally, the school noted it observed the criticism the “free tuition for all” policies received.
Eva Aagaard is the medical school’s senior associate dean for education. She explains, “A lot of the students who go into medicine are from fairly wealthy families. There are a certain number of families that can afford to pay for medical school. Should those families have a free ride to medical school. Who would we be benefiting?”