Purdue announces new investments in student scholarships, faculty recruitment efforts

July 14, 2011

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Purdue University President France A. Córdova announced two new programs to aid more students with scholarships and attract top faculty with additional money for setting up research programs, hiring graduate students and equipping laboratories.

Córdova has allocated $7 million for student scholarships that will be used to stimulate efforts to raise private donations for student support. Faculty recruitment efforts will get a $6 million boost to enhance start-up packages for research support. The programs were made possible by one-time gains realized this past fiscal year from university investments.

The scholarship support will be one-time matches to promote private gifts for scholarships for Indiana residents, students from diverse backgrounds and students who demonstrate top academic performance. The money also will be used to help support scholarships for military veterans and their dependents.

"Enhancing private giving for scholarship support is a primary way we can make sure Purdue stays affordable for students, and we've had great support from our alumni and other donors for these efforts," Córdova said. "This allocation will help deans and department heads reach out to extend that support even further."

Philanthropic support for scholarships has been a priority for Purdue over the last four years. The Access and Success campaign attracted $42.6 million in 2010-2011. That brings the total raised to $170.6 million, which is on target to reach its $304 million goal by 2014. Total financial aid at Purdue in 2009-2010 from all sources was $522.8 million, 25 percent of which comes from university sources.

Faculty start-up packages, a key element in recruiting established researchers and top faculty, can range from $250,000 to several million dollars depending on the discipline and breadth of the research program.

"I hope that with increased investment in faculty hiring, we will continue to be successful in recruiting persons of the quality of Jay Melosh and Jiang-Kang Zhu, both members of the National Academy of Sciences who we recruited to the colleges of Science and Agriculture last year," Córdova said. "I have every confidence that we will continue to retain faculty at the high level that the provost and deans have managed this past year, in spite of fiscal challenges."

Purdue successfully retained 138 faculty members out of 155 who either had employment packages from other universities or were being heavily recruited in the last fiscal year.

Purdue has a strong reputation in financial circles for the rigor and performance of its investment strategies and outcomes. Analysts at CNBC recently lauded Purdue for its hands-on management of hedge funds and other investment tools.

Writer:  Chris Sigurdson, 765-496-2644, sig@purdue.edu

Source:  France A. Córdova, president@purdue.edu