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Introducing a New Expert Content Section: Careers!

Do MSTP Programs allow you to graduate completely debt-free (MD/PhD)?

streampawstreampaw Registered User Posts: 95 Junior Member
edited May 2013 in Pre-Med Topics
I know that MSTP programs pay for tuition for the full 8 years. But does it provide money for living expenses as well?

Meaning, do all MSTP graduates graduate entirely debt-free? (assuming that they did not accumulate any debt during undergrad)


Also, if you graduate from an MSTP program, can you go into a regular residency? Such as, if you wanted to be a dermatologist, can you go into the 4 year dermatology residency right after you graduate the MSTP?
Post edited by streampaw on

Replies to: Do MSTP Programs allow you to graduate completely debt-free (MD/PhD)?

  • WayOutWestMomWayOutWestMom Registered User Posts: 9,363 Senior Member
    The first thing you need to know is that not MD/PhD programs are MSTP. NIH funds MSTP at a limited number of schools. And NIH only funds a limited number of slots. (Funding depends on Congress.)

    Currently there are only a total 933 MSTP students at all MSTP programs combined. (For an average 117-133 MSTP students accepted per year.)

    MSTP does pay tuition expenses and give the student a stipend for living expenses. Stipends run around $25-$30K/year. (Exact amount varies by location.) Whether you can live on that amount depends on your locale and lifestyle.

    Non MSTP MD/PhD programs may or may not fund the full costs of attending medical school.
  • IcarusIcarus Registered User Posts: 4,336 Senior Member
    Also, if you graduate from an MSTP program, can you go into a regular residency?

    Yes - you receive both an MD and PhD, so you are qualified for any residency you wish to apply to.

    Also, I would advise against considering MSTP programs just for the financial benefit. Those programs are designed for people who have a significant interest in having research (generally basic science research) as a significant part of their careers.
  • feathrfeathr Registered User Posts: 338 Member
    ^ not if you have a 190 step 1..
  • i_wanna_be_Browni_wanna_be_Brown Forum Champion Brown Posts: 8,168 Forum Champion
    I assume Icarus meant "eligible for any residency" since md/PhDs are indeed eligible for any residency position that an md is.

    In addition to the research component, MSTPs are incredibly competitive (our incoming class has median gpa/mcat of 3.9/37 and we arent even a top 10 school). Not only would someone without the proper background severely struggle to get into one of these programs but you would struggle to get out. The PhD is by no means a residency silver bullet like it used to be and a 3-5 year break in the middle of medical school certainly doesn't help with getting honors in clinical rotations. It's a really awful deal if it isn't what you really want.
  • IcarusIcarus Registered User Posts: 4,336 Senior Member
    I assume Icarus meant "eligible for any residency" since md/PhDs are indeed eligible for any residency position that an md is.

    I did - poor wording on my part. "Eligible to apply to any ACGME residency" is more accurate :)
  • i_wanna_be_Browni_wanna_be_Brown Forum Champion Brown Posts: 8,168 Forum Champion
    ^ I would say feather is being picky. I understood what you were saying perfectly.
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