The Duke University Board of Trustees focused on current academic and financial issues at Duke and an update on the implementation of President Vincent E. Price's strategic framework at its regular quarterly meeting and annual planning retreat Friday and Saturday.
The board also participated in a discussion on how research universities are changing as they increase collaborations with organizations outside the university to translate discoveries for the good of society. The discussion was facilitated by Duke's Innovation and Entrepreneurship Initiative.
In other business, the board reviewed and approved a 3.7 percent increase in the total cost of attending the university for undergraduates during the 2019-20 academic year, marking the lowest rate of increase in total cost in more than 20 years.
Undergraduate tuition in 2019-20 will be $55,880, a 3.9 percent increase, and the total cost for the next academic year, including tuition, room, board and fees, will be $73,519.
In the current academic year, which ends June 30, Duke expects to invest about $175 million of institutional funds to support undergraduate financial aid, which is a 4.2 percent increase over the previous year.
Around half of all Duke students from a wide range of family incomes are receiving some form of financial assistance from the university this year, making the average net cost for those students receiving need-based aid less than $20,000
The university’s investment in financial aid is expected to grow at a rate greater than the rise in tuition for the coming year, although estimates for financial aid costs in the next academic year will not be known until later in 2019, when financial aid packages for new and returning students are calculated.
Duke is among the few institutions nationally committed to a need-blind admissions policy, under which the university accepts U.S. students without regard to their ability to pay for college and then fully meets their demonstrated financial need, which also includes support for study abroad, summer programs and other components of the undergraduate experience.
Tuition and fees pay for only part of the cost of a Duke education. Other significant sources of support for students include income generated by the university’s endowment and private philanthropy from individuals and foundations.
New tuition rates for Duke's graduate and professional schools in 2019-20 also have been set:
- Divinity School: $25,150 (Master of Divinity), up 4 percent over the current year.
- Fuqua School of Business: $70,000 (daytime MBA), up 2.6 percent.
- Graduate School: $55,680 (Ph.D. programs), up 4 percent.
- Law School: $66,000, up 4.1 percent.
- Nicholas School of the Environment: $41,000, up 2.6 percent.
- Pratt School of Engineering: $56,664 (Master of Engineering Management Program), up 3.8 percent.
- Sanford School of Public Policy: $48,307 (Master of Public Policy), up 3 percent.
- School of Medicine: $61,170, up 3.5 percent.
- School of Nursing (Graduate and Doctor of Nursing Practice): $44,112, up 3.9 percent.