Press Releases | Costs

Trustees Should Look to Purdue University as a Model for Engaged Governance

Board approves decreased room and board rates.
December 16, 2013

The American Council of Trustees and Alumni applauds recent actions by the Purdue University Board of Trustees to ensure higher education access, quality, and affordability.

“Trustees everywhere should take a look at the Purdue playbook,” said Anne D. Neal, ACTA president. “The recent announcement of decreased room and board rates, coupled with a tuition freeze, debunks the popular perception that costs must always rise in higher education. It’s time that more trustees and presidents realize they can’t balance their books on the backs of students and taxpayers.”

The university announced on Saturday a 2.5 percent reduction in room and board rates, which includes cuts in the cost of average housing as well as dining plans. Additionally, the board approved room and board discounts of $150 for 12-month contracts, signaling an incentive for students to take courses over the summer.

“It’s simply not cost-effective for buildings to go unused or underutilized during less popular times, such as early mornings, Fridays, or during the summer,” said Michael Poliakoff, ACTA vice president of policy. “Colleges can cut costs on capital projects, and students can graduate faster and less expensively if they take advantage of year-round learning.”

Tuition prices will not increase as Purdue continues its two-year tuition freeze announced earlier this year.

These steps are just the latest in laudable efforts by Purdue’s governing body and president to rein in spiraling costs in higher education. Earlier this year, the Purdue board approved a presidential compensation plan for Daniels—far less than other base salaries—that ties increases to performance on key measures of attainment and affordability.


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