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Bronx medical school students to receive free tuition after $1 billion donation

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(NEW YORK) — A historic, billion-dollar donation to a medical school in New York City has provided students with free tuition moving forward.


Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx received a $1 billion donation from Dr. Ruth Gottesman, former professor and chair of the school’s board of trustees, the institution announced in a press release Monday.

The massive donation — a “transformational gift,” the school said — is among the largest ever made to a university in the United States and seemingly the largest made to an American medical school, according to the institution.

The $1 billion donation will ensure that no student at Einstein will have to pay tuition again, Dr. Philip Ozuah, president and CEO of Montefiore Einstein, the umbrella organization for Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Health System, said in the announcement.

All current, fourth-year students will be reimbursed their spring 2024 semester tuition and, beginning at the start of the next term, all students moving forward will receive free tuition at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, the school said.

Tuition and fees for one year at the medical school total over $63,000, and more than half the medical students owe upward of $200,000 in student debt after graduating, the Albert Einstein College of Medicine says on its website.

Almost half of students are New Yorkers and nearly 60% of students at the university are women, according to the institution.

“This donation radically revolutionizes our ability to continue attracting students who are committed to our mission, not just those who can afford it,” Dr. Yaron Tomer, the Marilyn and Stanley Katz dean at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, said in the release.

“Additionally, it will free up and lift our students, enabling them to pursue projects and ideas that might otherwise be prohibitive. We will be reminded of the legacy this historic gift represents each spring as we send another diverse class of physicians out across the Bronx and around the world to provide compassionate care and transform their communities,” Tomer said.

The donation comes from Gottesman and her late husband, David “Sandy” Gottesman, who was the founder of First Manhattan Co. and an early investor in Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, before he died in 2022 at 96 years old.

Ruth Gottesman, 93, began her work at Einstein’s Children’s Evaluation and Rehabilitation Center more than 55 years ago.

“I am very thankful to my late husband, Sandy, for leaving these funds in my care, and l feel blessed to be given the great privilege of making this gift to such a worthy cause,” Ruth Gottesman said in the press release.

“Each year, well over 100 students enter Albert Einstein College of Medicine in their quest for degrees in medicine and science. They leave as superbly trained scientists and compassionate and knowledgeable physicians, with the expertise to find new ways to prevent diseases and provide the finest health care to communities here in the Bronx and all over the world,” she said.

 

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