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Paying for the Journey: Fee Assistance and Scholarships

Tino Mkorombindo is a third year MD/MBA candidate at the University of Louisville School of Medicine/College of Business. You can follow him on instagram, twitter, or linkedin.

The process of becoming a physician is a very expensive process. You have to cover books, application fees, tuition, living expenses, travel fees, and many other expenses on a limited budget. This creates another barrier for those who are not wealthy. However, here we will discuss ways to cover some of the costs. 

Medical School Application Costs:

 The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) provides the Fee Assistance Program. The benefits of the program include access to the MCAT Official Prep Online-Only Bundle (268.80 value), reduced MCAT registration fee ($320 to $130), a complimentary subscription to the Medical School Admission Requirements online Database ($36 value), and a waiver for all American Medical College Applications Service (AMCAS) costs for one application submission with up to 20 medical school applications ($970 value). 

Medical School Costs

 The AAMC also provides information about financial aid through medical school and how to make it affordable. Here, they outline essential things like the financial aid application process, the different types of loans available, and ways to have the full cost of attendance covered by committing to service after graduation. 

They also provide extremely helpful resources like the MedLoans Organizers and Calculator, the Financial Wellness for Medical School and Beyond portal, and a place to review strategies for managing your finances during medical school. They discuss budgeting basics, budget worksheets, and other ways to reduce medical school debt

Medical School Scholarships

There are numerous scholarships available for underrepresented minority students and those who come from disadvantaged backgrounds. In addition to searching keys phrases in search engines like “Minority medical school scholarships,” you should also utilize known resources. It is your best bet to start on websites like FastWeb and the U.S. Department of Education‘s sites, which contain helpful databases of scholarships. You can also explore the AAMC’s loan repayment and scholarship database that shows lists of scholarships available by state. 

Many local scholarships are available. Start by meeting with medical school’s financial aid counselors; they usually have access to many resources. You can also contact university counselors to request more information. You can also contact local hospitals and speak to the human resources departments; some hospital foundations offer scholarships or tuition assistance in exchange for employee commitment. There are many local businesses, religious institutions, clubs, and nonprofit organizations that provide scholarships. Yes, this requires more work, but the payout is absolutely worth it. 

Our resources section contains several options for scholarships and internships! We also recommend you check out this helpful article for more information. 

Congratulations on beginning this journey!

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