Trustees Raise Costs 5 Percent


Duke's trustees approved a 5 percent increase in tuition, fees, room, and board for undergraduate students entering the university this fall. Tuition and mandatory fees for students enrolled in the Trinity College of Arts and Sciences and the Pratt School of Engineering will be $29,345 for 2003-04, up 5.4 percent from $27,844 for the current year. Eighty-five percent of Duke undergraduates are enrolled in Trinity College; 15 percent matriculate in the engineering school. The total cost to attend Duke this coming school year, including room and board, will be $37,555.

" We have worked hard to limit the increase in tuition and fees for students and their families, and we feel it falls toward the middle of the range of our peer institutions," says Provost Peter Lange, Duke's senior academic officer. "Through our continuing commitment to full financial aid, we are seeking to assure that these increases do not adversely affect the ability of those in need of financial assistance to attend Duke. The increases will help assure that we can sustain our forward momentum in attracting stronger faculty and students, despite our relatively smaller endowment as compared to many of the schools with which we compete."

In December, the trustees reaffirmed Duke's commitment to its need-blind admissions policy and to meeting the full demonstrated financial needs of students who enroll. About 43 percent of Duke undergraduates receive financial assistance from the university. The annual average grant to a financial-aid recipient for the 2002-03 academic year was more than $19,500.

After many years of planning, Duke and twenty-eight other colleges and universities nationwide--including Amherst College, Cornell University, Stanford University, the University of Pennsylvania, Wake Forest University, and Yale University--will implement a new approach this fall to determining students' financial needs and providing financial aid.

" This new methodology, called the Consensus Approach to Need Analysis, is designed to make higher education more accessible," Lange says. "Our goal is to reduce confusion among applicant families while, on average, reducing parent contributions. At Duke, we believe that this new approach offers additional financial support to families with need, while underlining the university's commitment to accessibility."

The university expended nearly $37 million for financial aid in 2002-03, an increase of 8.3 percent from the year before, and that figure is expected to rise above $40 million in 2003-04. Duke also began last year providing financial aid to international students who qualified for need-based aid.

The trustees also approved tuition hikes for Duke's graduate and professional schools. The largest rise is in the Graduate School, which will increase its combined tuition and registration fees by 10.9 percent in its Ph.D. programs, primarily to increase the resources available to fund competitive graduate awards. Most graduate students will see a corresponding increase in their fellowships as tuition levels rise. Master's degree students in the Graduate School, who are generally not fully supported through fellowships, will face a more moderate increase of 2.8 percent.

The tuition rates for 2003-04 for the graduate and professional schools are:

Divinity School--$12,760, up 4.2 percent

Fuqua School of Business--$33,500 (daytime M.B.A.), up 6.9 percent

Graduate School--$26,610 (Ph.D. programs), up 10.9 percent

Law School--$31,680, up 5.9 percent

Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences--$22,300, up 4.7 percent

School of Medicine--$31,194, up 5 percent

School of Nursing--$24,192, up 4 percent

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