At the turn of the 20th century, mostly as a result of the Flexner report, medical education changed dramatically by establishing a scientific basis for the study of medicine within the institutions of the major universities. There have been major and dramatic changes in medicine during the past 80 years that have improved medical education in the United States, but these changes have also placed major economic strains on students who have educational debts. If medicine is a social responsibility to the public, then the public should share the responsibility of identifying and supporting new approaches to funding and financially managing the teaching of future physicians. There is no universal solution because there are various approaches institutions may take to structure these financial responsibilities. This article describes trends in medical student educational debt, identifies the financial needs of medical students, and proposes ways of addressing those needs to avert a possible national financial crisis among medical students. We must invest in medical students because they will be the leaders we need to help care for our society and our own families in the next century.