Last week, Purdue University announced it would freeze tuition for a fourth year in a row. And today, IU indicated it would follow suit. IU president Michael McRobbie recommended in a statement today that IU not increase tuition for in-state students for the next two years. The IU Board of Trustees will make a final decision on that request June third. McRobbie’s recommendation comes on the heels of Purdue Trustees approving a fourth year of a tuition freeze at that school. Purdue has frozen the rate of tuition since the 2012-2013 school year and plans on offering the same rate through the 2015-2016 academic year.
A tuition freeze would be something of a change to IU’s past approach. IU Spokesman Mark Land said yesterday that while IU has not offered an across-the-board tuition freeze recently, it has set a fixed rate for some students. There isn’t a huge difference between the two universities’ tuition for in-state students. Full-time Purdue students can expect a rate of $10,002 per year, while IU students can expect to pay $10,388 a year. At Purdue out-of-state students pay $28,804, while IU is more costly at $33,240 a year. Land says in the past IU has offered other strategies to help its students with affordability.
At Purdue, the recent tuition freeze also came with a proposed 3.5 percent merit pay increase for employees at its West Lafayette campus. Purdue Trustees also approved an increase in entry-level wages to $10 per hour for all full-time clerical and service staff. The minimum wage at IU is lower, at just $8.25 per hour. Purdue, however, pays its part-time employees, many of them students, as little as $7.25 an hour. Land says there has been talk of future wage increases at IU.
IU trustees will take public comment on tuition recommendations at their meeting Wednesday, June 3rd. Public comments begins at 3:30 p.m. in Room 450A of the IUPUI Campus Center in Indianapolis.