Brigham to expand hosting of student trainees through a new Mass General Brigham, Bloomberg Philanthropies, and Boston Public Schools partnership

In January 2024, Bloomberg Philanthropies committed $37.8 million to Mass General Brigham (MGB), the parent organization of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, to create a new healthcare career preparatory curriculum at the Edward M. Kennedy Academy of Health Careers (EMK) School, part of Boston Public Schools.

Two primary MGB sites—Brigham and Massachusetts General Hospital—will partner with EMK to develop the new curriculum and host the school’s students for on-site training. Specifically, the collaboration will allow EMK to double in size to 800 students; add new health career pathways in surgery, medical imaging, and biotech/medical lab science to complement its existing tracks in nursing and emergency services; and offer work-based learning, summer and afterschool placements, and career counseling to every student.

Upon high school graduation, students who complete the program will have the opportunity to pursue higher education or go straight into well-paying careers within the MGB system.

“This is a huge step forward in our vision for every high school student to be college- and career-ready,” says City of Boston Mayor Michelle Wu. “With this transformational support from Bloomberg Philanthropies, we are bringing the full resources of Mass General Brigham’s nationally renowned teaching hospitals to forge a deep partnership with the Boston Public Schools. This is a game changer for Boston.”

The Brigham has a long history of partnering with Boston Public Schools to provide students with on-site training opportunities and career preparation. Since 2000, the Brigham’s Student Success Jobs Program has provided year-round internships to hundreds of Boston high school students—with students working with mentors 10 hours each week as fully onboarded Brigham employees. The new partnership with MGB, Bloomberg, and EMK, the city of Boston’s health career-focused public high school, will expand on this foundation.

“We’re excited to build on the strengths of the Brigham’s Student Success Jobs Program and to work with our Mass General colleagues to create an even bigger and more far-reaching program,” says Giles W.L. Boland, MD, president of the Brigham and executive vice president of MGB. “It’s no secret that hospitals across the country are dealing with staffing shortages in all areas of medicine. Bloomberg Philanthropies’ momentous support will allow us to leverage the collective expertise of the Mass General Brigham system to address two persistent challenges: preparing high school students for career success and increasing the pipeline of qualified healthcare talent. It is the ultimate win-win-win.”

Adds David F.M. Brown, MD, president, Academic Medical Centers, MGB, “This partnership will have a long-lasting impact on our current and future workforce and the surrounding community. We are most grateful to Bloomberg Philanthropies for their visionary generosity and for this opportunity to collaborate with Mayor Wu, the city of Boston, and Boston Public Schools.”

The $37.8 million investment is part of a $250 million initiative by Bloomberg Philanthropies to build partnerships between healthcare and education systems and create new health career high schools in 10 communities across the country: Boston; Charlotte, NC; Dallas; Durham, NC; Demopolis, AL; Houston; Nashville; Northeast Tennessee; New York; and Philadelphia.

“For too long, our education system has failed to prepare students for good jobs in high-growth industries,” says Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies and Bloomberg LP and the 108th mayor of New York City. “By combining classroom learning with hands-on experience, these specialized healthcare high schools will prepare students for careers with opportunities for growth and advancement. America needs more healthcare workers, and we need a stronger, larger middle class—and this is a way to help accomplish both goals.”