Aspiring primary care doctors rejoice: NYU medical school's tuition gift is a debt relief

Eighty-six percent of us medical graduates are in debt. I envision that it will be years before many graduates, especially recent ones with increasingly higher levels of debt, will have sufficient funds or desire to contribute while still repaying medical school bills. As a result of this decision, I would expect an increase in voluntary donations from proud and appreciative graduates from medical schools not charging tuition.

Most medical students can already be behind $228,000 in lifetime earnings by the time of graduation compared to their former undergraduate classmates who entered the workforce right away. Furthermore, the debt accrued, the median of which is currently $150,000 for private school graduates, such as those from NYU, can come during or just before perhaps the most important time in life, when students may have other large expenditures such as having children, beginning a retirement portfolio or purchasing a first home.

The relatively low salary of a resident physician, usually $50,000-60,000 per year, intensifies the problem of debt repayment as many loans begin accruing interest after grace periods that are usually shorter than the length of residency. These factors may lead to pushing other life matters into the future.

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