to Fast Facts links
Download a PDF
of this page (Abobe
Acrobat Reader Required).
- Many Purdue academic schools and disciplines hold top
10 rankings in various national surveys of academic excellence,
with particular strengths in engineering and business.
- Purdue is ranked 21st in the nation in the latest "U.S.
News & World Report" top 50 public universities survey.
- Record enrollment on the West Lafayette campus of 38,208
in 2001-02 led systemwide Purdue enrollment past 67,700.
- New students at West Lafayette are the academically best-prepared
in Purdue history with average SAT scores of 1134, while
72 percent graduated in the top 30 percent of their high
- Purdue has graduated more women engineers than any other
university, and one in 50 engineers in the U.S. is Purdue-trained.
- Purdue is proud of its "cradle of astronauts" reputation,
with 22 alumni having been chosen for space travel. Purdue
astronauts have included the first and last men on the moon,
Neil Armstrong and Gene Cernan, and one of America's original
Project Mercury astronauts, Gus Grissom.
- Purdue alumni are presidents of 16 nationally regarded
colleges and universities, including the University of Chicago,
the University of Illinois, and Syracuse University.
- More Forbes 800 corporate chief executive officers hold
Purdue undergraduate degrees than any other public university.
- Noted alumni of the past range from author and humorist
George Ade and inventor David Ross to novelist Booth Tarkington
and "popcorn king" Orville Redenbacher.
- Nearly 70 faculty members on the West Lafayette campus
hold distinguished or named professorships in recognition
of teaching and research excellence.
- During the 1990s, four Purdue professors were named winners
of the prestigious Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement
of Teaching Indiana Professor of the Year Award.
- Purdue enrolls more international students than any other
public research institution in the nation.
- Purdue researchers developed high-lysine corn and sorghum,
and Purdue-developed wheat varieties are grown on more than
80 percent of the nation's acreage planted in soft red winter
- Early work by Purdue researchers led to the first successful
transmission of a black-and-white television picture.
- As a land-, sea-, and space-grant institution, Purdue
expends well over $200 million annually for research, using
funds received from the state and federal governments, industry,
foundations, and individual donors. There are more then
400 research laboratories on the West Lafayette campus.
- Amelia Earhart served as a women's career consultant to
Purdue from 1935 to 1937, and the Lockheed Electra aircraft
used on her ill-fated world flight was made possible with
gift funds from the Purdue Research Foundation.
- Lillian Gilbreth, the time-and-motion study expert immortalized
in the book and film "Cheaper by the Dozen," was a part-time
professor of industrial engineering and career consultant
- Purdue operates the nation's largest residence hall system
among schools that do not require students to live in university
housing. Nearly 12,300 undergraduate students live on the
West Lafayette campus.
- Home of the nation's first university computer sciences
department, Purdue maintains its lead 40 years later with
such initiatives as operating a state-of-the-art IBM RS/6000
- The initiative of Purdue President James Smart in 1895
led to a meeting of seven Midwest universities to form the
Intercollegiate Conference of Faculty Representatives
better known today as the Big Ten.