|Impact of your gift|
The need for financial aid has grown tremendously. Last fiscal year, the HMS Office of Financial Aid awarded $14.9 million in need-based scholarship support—a $1.4 million increase from the previous fiscal year. With 87 percent of current HMS students relying on scholarship support, your participation truly matters.
MEET RAMONE (Class of 2015).
“HMS has been my dream school for a long time. Knowing my initial financial aid package will remain unchanged here helps eliminate any anxiety over whether I can continue to afford my education.”
Ramone Williams, a second-year with an interest in oncology, is one of the 87 percent of HMS students who relies on financial aid to make their medical ambitions a reality.
“I chose HMS because it has been my dream school for a long time,” says Ramone, who was interested in becoming a doctor after finding that she had a natural talent for science and a passion for medicine. “I had really bad asthma as a child and developed a close relationship with my physician through that experience. My personal and academic interests aligned, and I knew medicine was the right field for me.” Outside of classes, Ramone is president of the HMS chapter of the Student National Medical Association, whose goal is to diversify the physician workforce through pipeline and mentorship programs that bring high school and undergraduate students to campus to experience what HMS and its affiliate hospitals have to offer. After graduation, she plans to go into academic medicine, where she can combine her clinical practice with research and teaching.
While she considers her professional interests and options, paying back her student loans is top of mind. “The debt burden is a very real factor,” she says. “I need to be in a position to be able to support myself and help my family pay back the loans that have accumulated all these years.”
Your gift makes a tangible difference and ensures HMS can continue to attract the best and the brightest students, like Ramone, regardless of their economic backgrounds. Make your gift today to provide immediate-use scholarships to an outstanding group of students like Ramone.
MEET JOSHUA (Class of 2014).
“I interviewed at other schools around the country and did not find a single place that could match the resources HMS has—from the clinical faculty, to the hospitals, to the professors. There’s no institution like Harvard that has great faculty across the board and a host of great hospitals where you can learn and practice medicine.”
What Joshua relishes most about medicine is not just learning the mechanics, but being able to connect with and help patients. “I’ve always been interested in science, but I also enjoy interacting with people, and medicine allows me to mesh those two passions together,” says Joshua. “People can take their health for granted until they’re in dire straits, and I want to be there for them in those times.” Joshua is drawn to the dynamism of medicine—one day is never like the next. As he does his rotations at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, he’s particularly drawn to active and unpredictable fields that keep him on his toes. Eventually, Joshua plans to have a varied practice, where he can do clinical work, research, teach, and pursue other interests like medical missions to places in need. “This approach is something I really want to maintain regardless of what I go into,” he says.
Until then, he’ll keep taking advantage of all HMS has to offer. “The resources we have are just incredible,” Joshua says. In addition to taking a full course load, Joshua has taken advantage of living in the Longwood Medical Area as a volunteer with Boston Asthma Swim, which promotes healthy activity among children who suffer from asthma. “You come in expecting it to be a lot of work, and it is a lot of work. But I’ve been surprised by how much I enjoy everything.”
Harvard Medical School’s commitment to providing financial aid enables our exceptional students to pursue their life’s work in medicine as compassionate physicians and researchers devoted to improving human health. Make your gift today to provide immediate-use scholarships to an outstanding group of students like Joshua.
MEET ERIKA (Class of 2012).
“Financial aid has been a huge part of my journey both as an undergraduate and in medical school. It has given me a strong spirit of gratitude. I hope to be a leader in my community to help pay it forward to other young people who have the skills and drive, but are missing the financial piece.”
As a first generation college graduate raised by her single mother, Erika relied heavily on financial aid to realize her educational dreams. After graduating from Yale, she came to Harvard Medical School, where rigorous training, peer relationships, and faculty mentorship helped her to learn and grow in ways she never imagined. Here, Erika learned how to be both a physician and a leader. Her diverse experiences—serving on the admissions committee, coordinating the first years’ Society Olympics, and conducting research at Boston Children’s Hospital—have not only made her a better person, but will ultimately make her a better physician. And financial aid helped make those experiences possible. Erika is currently a resident in otolaryngology at the University of Alabama Medical Center in Birmingham.
Click here to watch a video, featuring Erika, and another recent graduate, who benefited from financial aid.