The Purdue University Board of Trustees has made key approvals for several efforts throughout its statewide network. The board voted to keep room and board rates flat for its three physical campuses and also to accept a $30 million gift to fund the renovation of the Union Club Hotel.
Room and board rates for the West Lafayette, Northwest and Fort Wayne campuses will not see an increase for 2019-2020 academic year. It is the seventh consecutive year for West Lafayette, and fourth consecutive year for the other two campuses, where room and board did not go up.
The university says, combined with its plan to freeze tuition rates, the total cost of attending Purdue will be less in 2020 than it was in 2012.
"In just seven years, Purdue has gone from having the second-highest rates in the Big Ten to having the lowest," Purdue President Mitch Daniels said in a news release. "Room and board is the second-largest expense for our students and their families, and as long as we can avoid raising the cost without diminishing our commitment to excellence, it’s the right thing to do."
The board also voted to establish Purdue Online, a new organizational unit the university says will develop a coordinated, unified system-wide portfolio of online course and degree offerings. Purdue Online officially launches in January and the university says its first goal is to create a "one-stop shop" portal that will match students with programs that best meet their needs.
The vote on the Union Club Hotel project allows a team to begin the preliminary planning process for the massive renovation effort. The project was first announced during Homecoming festivities in September and is the result of a gift from former trustee Bruce White, his wife Beth, and the Dean and Barbara White Foundation. The project will not only upgrade the hotel, but also create a laboratory learning environment for students.