In an effort to continue addressing the growing physician shortage in Hawaiʻi, UH Manoa’s John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM) received a $750,000 commitment from Hawaiʻi Pacific Health (HPH), one of the state’s largest healthcare systems, to pay for the full four-year tuition of five first-year JABSOM students through its HPH Medical Student Scholarship Fund.
This follows another $750,000 commitment from HPH in 2018 as part of a collaborative scholarship program that included local philanthropists Virginia and Barry Weinman and other community donors.
HPH’s total commitment is now $1.5 million to fund the full tuition of 10 future Hawaiʻi physicians.
“When JABSOM medical students graduate, their average educational debt is $169,000. This debt represents a barrier to practicing medicine in Hawaiʻi, where physician reimbursement is lower than many parts of the nation, and practice expenses and the cost of living are higher,” said Raymond P. Vara, president and CEO of HPH. “Indeed, through these partnerships supporting the medical education of our students, we can keep more of our best and brightest students at home while serving a real community need. Hawaiʻi’s physician shortage is very real and only through the mutual collaboration and teamwork of our partners can we truly create a healthier Hawaiʻi.”
Added JABSOM Dean Jerris Hedges, “Hawaiʻi students, who represent nearly 90 percent of the entering medical school class at JABSOM, represent the best means of addressing our physician workforce shortage. Allowing these students to graduate with minimal debt will enhance the retention of these students as practitioners in Hawaiʻi and encourage their selection of clinical practice on neighbor islands.”
Primary criteria considered for the HPH Medical Student Scholarship Program at JABSOM:
- Full-time medical students pursuing an MD degree with a commitment to practice medicine in Hawaiʻi.
- Meets Hawaiʻi resident requirements.
- Exhibits strong merit as part of the JABSOM application process.
Additionally, preference will be given to qualified candidates who have participated in the HPH Summer Student Research Program. The incoming JABSOM class of 2023 begins its orientation on July 15, 2019.
Web Video: Student Affairs Director Dr. Larry Burgess is excited by the gift–and the student commitment that comes with it.