WSU to cut tuition for incoming out-state med students

Kim Kozlowski
The Detroit News

Prospective medical school students who live outside of Michigan and are considering Wayne State University next year will get a 13.3 percent reduction in tuition, following approval Friday by the Board of Governors.

Wayne State University will reduce tuition for incoming medical students from outside Michigan next year 13.3 percent, a step officials said aims to address concerns about diversity in the program.

The reduction will only occur for incoming, out-of-state medical students this fall, meaning costs will drop from the current rate of $66,256 to $57,400, based on 50 credits.

The recommendation is aimed at increasing the number and quality of applicants, and students of color at the university that has been working to create a more diverse medical school student body, officials said. It will also bring WSU’s tuition in line with the $57,000 national average for medical school students.

“We’re taking the radical step of reducing tuition instead of increasing it,” said David Hefner, WSU vice president of Health Affairs. “We’ve been an outlier, with higher costs for out-of-state applicants and we believe if we pull it more in line with the national average it will allow us to recruit more competitively for applicants we’d like to have come here, particularly qualified diverse applicants.”


Additionally, Hefner added, the Liaison Committee for Medical Education, the accrediting body for 144 medical schools, has noted in previous site visits that reducing medical school tuition would be a good action to take to increase diversity.

“We are taking that step,” said Hefner, who added the committee is visiting WSU again in April to review the university’s progress and expects all areas will meet or exceed all standards and citations during the visit.

The LCME cited diversity and 11 other areas that needed improvement to WSU in 2015 but the university has taken steps to improve all of the areas in a 1.5-year long process, the committee has approved the university’s steps, including its strategies for increasing diversity in its medical school student body.

While the 2015-16 class of 290 medical school students included five African-American and two Hispanic students, the 2016-17 class of 286 students diversified to include 36 African-American and 24 Hispanic students.

“We always want to have quality applicants,” said WSU President M. Roy Wilson. “And obviously diversity is important because we were cited for lack of diversity by the LCME. We’ve turned it around but we have to continue our work to break down barriers that might make it more difficult for first generation and low income students, many of them who come from diverse families.”

In other news, the Board of Governors elected Governor Sandra Hughes O’Brien as chair and Governor David Nicholson as vice chair.

WSU School of Medicine


Annualized Tuition Rates, 50 credits


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*No action included in January 27th BOG proposal

Source: Wayne State University