Welcome Back to a New Academic Year in West Lafayette

August 14, 2023

Dear Boilermakers,  

With Boiler Gold Rush welcoming our new students and the 2023-24 academic year starting next week, our campus is lively to its fullest extent once again. From the 100th season at Ross-Ade Stadium to the first entrepreneurs homecoming, from the largest student-run job fair to the Presidential Lecture Series, there are many exciting activities awaiting.   

To our undergraduate students: Drawing from a record number of 72,800 applicants, this year’s incoming class is the most competitive yet since Purdue began using Common App, with an admission rate of 50%. As a leading public research university and land-grant institution focusing on student access and success, including 12 years of frozen tuition and a record 84% six-year graduation rate, we are particularly proud of Purdue education’s uplifting socio-economic impact for so many students from here in Indiana and well beyond.  

To our master’s, PhD and professional degree students: You are the engine that powers our scholarly excellence, and we are committed to investing to enhance your success, including bolstering support for your professional development while streamlining administrative processes: reducing the number of times a plan of study needs to be resubmitted; lessening the number of times a faculty member needs to sign paperwork for you each year; and increasing the percentage of graduate program resources that flow directly to you rather than to the administration.  

To our faculty and staff colleagues: Academic and research excellence is at the core of our community of scholars, and both follow-ups to the initiatives and incentives announced last semester and new ones will continue to be provided. We thank you for your pursuit of excellence that was reflected in many ways last year, including our top-10 ranking among U.S. public universities and the first time that research awards exceeded $600 million.  

As part of the actions from the Action Council on Student Housing and Wellbeing since January, two new university residences have been announced, providing about 1,900 new beds and elevating student housing availability above the enrollment growth percentage. Other new academic, research, athletic and infrastructure facilities have also been approved by the Board of Trustees, with the investment of recently completed, ongoing and new projects in 2023 totaling $1.3 billion.  

Before this decade is over, based on many sources including philanthropic support, Purdue will have also invested $1 billion in the three strategic initiatives launched in 2022-23: Purdue University in Indianapolis (Purdue’s first comprehensive urban campus, officially announced on June 14, 2023), Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr. School of Business (led by James Bullard starting today), and Purdue Computes (with the four pillars of computing education, Institute of Physical AI, semiconductors and quantum).  

Purdue continues to serve our state and country, including through “ABCD:” Airport for the Greater Lafayette region, Broadband for rural communities in Indiana, hard-tech Corridor between our two campuses in West Lafayette and Indianapolis through central Indiana, and Purdue@DC which brings unique capabilities to our nation’s capital.  

This is Purdue: creating talents, jobs and innovation for Indiana and America; innovating learning, both residential and online; and discovering and disseminating knowledge with Excellence at Scale.  

The Purdue community includes students and colleagues from so many different backgrounds. We will continue listen to you, and continue creating a welcoming and supportive environment for all.

Boiler up to all of you!  

Mung Chiang, President  

Patrick Wolfe, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Diversity