June 14, 2023

Indiana University and Purdue University sign historic agreement

The agreement officially creates separate and independent Indianapolis campuses for IU and Purdue, leveraging the strengths of both globally respected reputations in the capital city

INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana’s two world-class public research universities, Indiana University and Purdue University, are transforming their 53-year-old collaborative IUPUI vision with the creation of separate and independent urban campuses in the capital city: Indiana University Indianapolis and Purdue University in Indianapolis.

The Boards of Trustees from both Indiana University and Purdue University approved a definitive agreement on Wednesday afternoon to formalize the separation of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. The agreement formalizes the creation of Indiana University Indianapolis, the new name for IU’s existing campus in Indianapolis, and Purdue University in Indianapolis, the first comprehensive urban campus of Purdue University. IU, the state’s largest research university, comprises a portfolio that includes seven campuses and two regional education centers statewide. Purdue’s flagship West Lafayette campus will be expanded to Purdue University in Indianapolis. Each university is slated to begin its separate Indianapolis operations in fall 2024.

The creation of independent campuses will enable the two higher education powerhouses to build upon their incredible legacies of excellence and impact to meet the needs of Indiana and its capital city for decades to come. Leveraging the strength of globally respected reputations independently, IU, Purdue, and the state of Indiana will each benefit from recently announced plans by each institution to expand extensive academic and research portfolios, increase talent attraction and retention programs, and invest millions of dollars in both individual and collaborative efforts.

“IU’s goal is nothing short of building one of the nation’s preeminent urban research universities, one defined by students transformed, discoveries made and communities strengthened,” IU President Pamela Whitten said. “Through this agreement we will unlock the remarkable potential of both institutions to meet the needs of our city and state. I am grateful for our many partners at Purdue University, and to the extensive state and community leadership, that have made today’s progress possible.”

“Today’s announcement launches transformative growth for our state’s land-grant university, and Boilermakers are excited to serve the people, businesses and communities of Indianapolis,” Purdue President Mung Chiang said. “Purdue will invest in, partner with, and together grow the tech-driven economy in central Indiana. We thank all of our partners at Indiana University and the many government, civic and business leaders who have been with us throughout this process. New opportunities for Purdue University in Indianapolis are limitless.”

How the realignment resolution will work

With today’s action by the Indiana University and Purdue University Boards of Trustees, all academic programs at IUPUI will transition to become part of IU Indianapolis in July 2024, with the exception of the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology and Computer Science within School of Science, which will become part of Purdue University in Indianapolis.

Thanks to dedicated appropriations from the Indiana General Assembly, IU will significantly expand and renovate research and laboratory facilities to support growing numbers of STEM faculty, including through the School of Science. To meet crucial talent and research needs, IU is also expanding the nation’s first school of informatics – the Luddy School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering – in Indianapolis. IU Indianapolis will offer new programs, including in applied computer science, while pursuing significantly expanded student enrollment at the Luddy School. These efforts will be central to IU’s recently announced SciTech Corridor, to be located at Michigan and West streets.

IU Indianapolis will also enhance the integration of its science programs with the IU School of Medicine and other allied health science schools, expanding the number of students who will be prepared for health science-based careers, improving the pipeline of doctors and nurses and keeping more graduates in the state.

In addition, IU will have responsibility for providing certain administrative services for both universities and for the intercollegiate athletic program. IU will continue to provide transformative educational experiences for the more than 20,000 students in other IU programs, such as business, law, nursing, social work and a wide range of other academic disciplines.

IU officials also noted the university’s partnership with the Madam Walker Legacy Center as a reflection of its commitment to embracing and engaging with a diverse array of community leaders, particularly in the neighborhood immediately adjacent to the current IUPUI campus. Both IU and Purdue also emphasized the importance of honoring the cultural and historic significance of Indiana Avenue, while ensuring shared progress that fosters thriving, culturally significant communities alongside two nationally regarded institutions of higher education.

The Purdue Board of Trustees voted to establish Purdue University in Indianapolis, Purdue’s first comprehensive urban campus, effective July 1, 2024. Purdue University in Indianapolis will assume responsibility for the existing engineering, computer science and technology programs at IUPUI and confer Purdue West Lafayette degrees. Purdue will also introduce programs from other colleges and departments in West Lafayette to Indianapolis, such as the Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr. School of Business, and create exciting opportunities for current West Lafayette faculty and students in Indianapolis to pursue research, internship or entrepreneurial opportunities with Indianapolis companies.

Purdue University in Indianapolis will create new knowledge and establish a strong pipeline of Boilermaker talent to the capital city, including some of the more than 30,000 STEM students currently enrolled in West Lafayette. Purdue University in Indianapolis will help connect talents and industry, maximize Indy’s unique strength in sports and biomedical technology, and fuel transformative job and economic growth in the region and state. 

Thanks to the state legislature’s support, Purdue anticipates substantially growing today’s Indianapolis enrollment; along with plans for a 28-acre campus footprint beyond the existing IUPUI Engineering & Technology buildings is the exploration of additional facilities throughout the city of Indianapolis. Understanding the historical significance of the area surrounding Indiana Avenue, Purdue will be an active participant in the “reimagining Indiana Avenue discussions” which will inform the development of the surrounding neighborhoods.    

The new Purdue University in Indianapolis will also serve as one bookend for a 65-mile-long Hard Tech Corridor in Indiana, stretching from downtown Indianapolis, through the LEAP Innovation District in Lebanon with new sites from companies such as Eli Lilly, all the way to Discovery Park District in West Lafayette.

Additionally, the agreement between the two universities allows both institutions to expand their academic and research offerings at their respective operations in Fort Wayne.

Potential for new programs, growth

IUPUI had a proud, 53-year record of accomplishment, evolving from a local commuter school to the third-largest undergraduate campus and one of the biggest research campuses in Indiana. Its 200,000-plus living alumni contribute mightily to the state’s economic growth.

Amid this transition to separate IU Indianapolis and Purdue University in Indianapolis campuses, key elements of what made IUPUI successful will remain:

  • Proximity to world-class employers.
  • Proximity to state government, within walking distance of campus.
  • Engagement with the community, extending even to faculty, a cutting-edge attribute only now being emulated by others.
  • The collaborative spirit in Indianapolis between Purdue and IU.
  • Pride in what has been accomplished over 53 years, gratitude to the faculty and staff who made it possible, and a loyal alumni base.
  • A commitment from both Purdue and IU to continue executive and mid-career education in Indianapolis. 

Benefiting the city of Indianapolis and state of Indiana

The dramatically growing needs of our state call for a correspondingly bold move to provide the world-class higher education and research capabilities our economy needs. Central Indiana business and community leaders have expressed concern about shortages of talent well-trained in the engineering, sciences, technological and health care disciplines, and a related gap in local capacity for high-end research.

The separation of IU and Purdue into individual Indianapolis campuses will increase the number of job-ready graduates in an innovation-led economy, fuel economic growth in the region and the state, and enhance service to the Indianapolis community and beyond. It also provides a platform for collaboration in which each university’s strengths will enhance funding opportunities for joint research initiatives.


What they are saying

Eric Holcomb, governor of Indiana: “IUPUI’s realignment will create a transformational change across Indiana’s landscape and far beyond. As Purdue and Indiana University – two of our state’s globally competitive universities – continue to focus on their individual strengths, they will also now create an epicenter for research and a training ground for future-focused innovative fields to ensure students are ready for the modern-day economy. This bold move will ensure Indiana is a leader in developing the workforce of tomorrow and attracting more companies to Indiana that are on the brink of cutting-edge discovery. Congratulations to presidents Chiang and Whitten for keeping Indiana’s trajectory straight up.”

Joe Hogsett, mayor of Indianapolis: “Like so much in our city right now, IUPUI has grown in ways that require a new approach – not to mention: more space. After more than a half-century as a duo, these educational icons of the Hoosier state will now double the gift they provide to this city as separate institutions. They will now serve as two magnets for talent, helping to build an Indianapolis population with more education and earning power.”

Todd Huston, speaker of Indiana House of Representatives: “Over 50 years ago, state and city leaders called for the creation of a world-class research university in Indianapolis because they knew it was vital to the economic growth of the region. That’s still true today, and I’m fully supportive of these changes, which will fuel the next wave of growth for the campus, Indianapolis, central Indiana, and our state. I look forward to supporting this important initiative in the next legislative session. It’s my hope that our thriving business and corporate community also steps up their support of this critical initiative that could be a major force behind Indiana’s talent pipeline for years to come.”

Roderic Bray, Senate president pro tem: “Indiana is home to some of the finest higher education institutions not just in the Midwest, but in the nation. The action taken today demonstrates a commitment to collaboration that will result in an even brighter future for our students and state.”

Chris Lowery, commissioner, Indiana Commission for Higher Education: “Today, Indiana University and Purdue University initiated strategic and collaborative steps to reimagine the potential for higher education and research in Indianapolis, our state’s capital. I am confident the vision being contemplated will provide transformative opportunities for our citizens, employers and state.” 

Melina Kennedy, CEO, Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP): “This is a great moment for Indiana and continues to foster the spirit of collaboration that leaders here exhibit when it comes to doing great things. Our members and initiatives, along with the 16 Tech Innovation District, will work closely with these two world-class universities to make this a success. This effort has clear benefits to our overall economy as we continue to find synergies in our work and further build the ecosystem of these research universities.” 

Kevin Brinegar, Indiana Chamber of Commerce president and CEO: “The decoupling better positions both universities for the future – allowing them to further promote and build on the outstanding programs each is known for. In turn, this will likely attract more students, afford them increased collaboration with their cohort, and overall better prepare them for the jobs of today and tomorrow. This is also exciting news for the Hoosier business community because of the positive impact it will have on the state’s talent pipeline.” 

Ting Gootee, president and CEO, TechPoint: “Indiana has a great opportunity to become a national leader in digital innovation and economic competitiveness by putting technology to work across our strongest industries. Purdue University and Indiana University are key to providing the highly trained talent in these vital economic regions. Every company has a tech need, no matter what sector it’s in, be it health care or advanced manufacturing. Such continued investment in talent and in cutting-edge research and development will define Indiana for future generations to come.”

David A. Ricks, chair and CEO, Eli Lilly and Company: “As a proud graduate of both universities, I’m excited to see this natural transformation of their Indianapolis presence. The world needs more graduates who are ready for STEM careers, and this evolution offers the promise to unlock the full potential of our state university institutions and their graduates. This change will also increase the opportunities for our great state institutions and their faculty to collaborate with Indy-based global science and technology companies to solve some of the world’s most pressing scientific, technological and health challenges.”

Jennifer Rumsey, president and CEO, Cummins: “Today’s announcement complements Cummins’ efforts to train youth around the world with employable, technical skills and connect them to good-paying jobs. We applaud the leaders of both universities for their continued strategic thinking and approach and how it will bolster our collective effort to increase the number of STEM graduates. We will continue to work with universities across the nation to help equip students and train current workers with the skills for the jobs of today and for the future, just as these two great universities are seeking to do with today’s announcement.” 

About Indiana University

Indiana University is one of the nation’s leading public research universities, with 90,000 students across 930+ academic programs, seven campuses, two regional academic centers and nine School of Medicine campuses. Since 1820, Indiana University has helped students create brighter futures, while also driving innovation, from breakthroughs in DNA technology to cancer research to trailblazing cultural programs and resources. IU is home to world-class academics with the country’s largest medical school, the world’s first school of philanthropy, the top-ranked Kelley School of Business and O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs, and the Luddy School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering, the nation’s first school of informatics. The university’s campuses are united by IU 2030, an aspirational vision for a bold and ambitious future focused on student success and opportunity, transformative research and creativity, and service to the state of Indiana and beyond. Learn more at http://iu.edu.

About Purdue University

Purdue University is a top public research institution developing practical solutions to today’s toughest challenges. Ranked in each of the last five years as one of the 10 Most Innovative universities in the United States by U.S. News & World Report, Purdue delivers world-changing research and out-of-this-world discovery. Committed to hands-on and online, real-world learning, Purdue offers a transformative education to all. Committed to affordability and accessibility, Purdue has frozen tuition and most fees at 2012-13 levels, enabling more students than ever to graduate debt-free. See how Purdue never stops in the persistent pursuit of the next giant leap at https://stories.purdue.edu

For more information on Purdue University at Indianapolis, visit webpage

Media contact: For Indiana: Amanda Roach, ajr1@iu.edu; for Purdue: Tim Doty, doty2@purdue.edu

Purdue University, 610 Purdue Mall, West Lafayette, IN 47907, (765) 494-4600

© 2015-23 Purdue University | An equal access/equal opportunity university | Copyright Complaints | Maintained by Office of Strategic Communications

Trouble with this page? Disability-related accessibility issue? Please contact News Service at purduenews@purdue.edu.