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Alumni Fund: Participation Matters

The Alumni Fund provides essential, immediately expendable funding for the School’s core needs. Annual contributions from alumni directly enhance student life by supporting educational programming, technology, the medical library, student research, and most importantly, financial aid and scholarships.

Why give? Strong participation in the Alumni Fund is an important expression that alumni appreciate their Yale experience, are committed to today’s students, and feel invested in the school’s future.

What does my gift support?

Unrestricted Support

Unrestricted financial support is a funding priority for the School. Gifts that have not been specifically designated provide the School with the funding to fulfill fundamental educational responsibilities. Unrestricted funding allows the pursuit of new educational programming, ideas, and technology in the quest for continued distinction, while maintaining the well-established standard of academic excellence.   

Financial Aid/Class Scholarship Funds

This is a priority area for fundraising efforts. Our medical students share a passion for medicine that is well balanced between a love and knowledge of science, and an undeniable urge to help others. But, medical education is expensive and despite our average medical student debt being lower than the average from other public or private medical schools, it is still much too high. At Yale, the financial aid package is directly tied to those endowments and current-use gifts that are designated for Financial Aid.

Educational Innovation and Excellence Fund

The Educational Innovation and Excellence Fund supports the efforts of faculty who create and implement curriculum related to the teaching of clinical and research skills essential for the practice of medicine. In 2015, YSM launched a new curriculum that includes new integrated courses and a dramatic increase in the amount of interactive problem-based and patient-based small group teaching. This new curriculum is built upon the principles and values of the unique Yale System of Education, including respect for student initiative and maturity, curricular flexibility, close faculty mentoring and a required thesis to promote scientific inquiry.

Medical Library

In 1934, Harvey Cushing approached two of his friends, John F. Fulton and Arnold C. Klebs, with a plan to donate their extensive rare historical book collections to Yale in the hopes Yale would build a separate Medical Library. As a result of donations from these three individuals, the present Medical Library was built in 1940. As a result of these donors and many other since, the Medical Library has been built on a tradition of philanthropy in order to ensure collections are available not only for the present user, but for future generations. The medical library is a welcoming research and study space providing online access to text, data, and images; a print collection of key medical reference books, journals and daily newspapers; and librarian support for identifying and using research content.

Student Research

Yale School of Medicine is the only M.D. program that has had a continuous thesis requirement since 1839; it stands as a defining characteristic of a Yale medical education. For many students, the thesis is the first time that they have formulated and investigated a unique hypothesis, and for most, it is a life-changing experience. Students conduct research projects that extend over the summer, during the regular term, and for more than half the student body, over an entire fifth year. Funding for this research is a challenge faced by every student. Philanthropic support furthers this important aspect of scientific training at Yale, makes thesis funding available to more students, and extends the scope of the School’s research training programs.  

Stethoscope Fund

Reunion year alumni have the opportunity to sponsor a stethoscope for an incoming student. Stethoscopes bearing the donors names, class years, and words of encouragement are presented to incoming students at the annual White Coat Ceremony each August. This meaningful tradition has received a wonderful reception from both alumni donors and recipients of the sponsored stethoscopes.