Notre Dame tuition increase lowest in 50 years

by Brendan O'Shaughnessy

Notre Dame Blue Seal

In a continuing effort to respond to ongoing economic difficulties faced by students and their families, the University of Notre Dame has set the percentage increase for 2010-11 undergraduate tuition at its lowest since 1960, and the University has reaffirmed its commitment to meeting the full demonstrated financial aid needs of all undergraduate students.

Undergraduate tuition at Notre Dame will increase 3.8 percent for the 2010-11 academic year to $39,919. The room and board rate will average $10,866.

In a letter to parents and guardians of students returning for the next academic year, Notre Dame’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., wrote that the University is mindful of the global financial crisis and appreciates the tremendous sacrifices that so many make to attend Notre Dame. He wrote that Notre Dame “employs a fiscally conservative approach to investments and spending to make the best use of all our resources.”

The challenging economic climate, he wrote, has prompted the University’s officers and trustees to focus on finding ways to contain costs and limit spending. Still, Father Jenkins wrote that the University would “strive to match the enormous amount of time, talent and energy” students and their families have invested in a Notre Dame education.

He pointed to the success and satisfaction of Notre Dame graduates as a measure of the University’s performance.

At a time when many college students fail to complete their course of study in four years, he wrote, Notre Dame has one of the highest retention rates in the nation, and 95 percent of its students graduate on time. Notre Dame graduates also report that they are pleased with their undergraduate experience and are able to find career opportunities within a year or less of graduation.

Speaking of what makes Notre Dame unique, Father Jenkins said the University “strives to develop the heart and the mind … instill values and knowledge … and inspire a lifelong mission as well as the capability to pursue it.”

Notre Dame remains steadfast in its commitment to meet the full demonstrated financial aid needs of all its undergraduate students. The financial aid program has been the highest priority in the University’s budgeting process in recent years, and that emphasis will continue. The amount of University scholarship assistance in 2010-11 will increase by 18 percent to $98 million.

In addition, Notre Dame is among a small group of private universities with an undergraduate “need blind” admissions policy in which admissions officers make decisions on applicants’ qualifications without consideration of whether they can afford the cost of tuition.

Graduate and professional school tuition also will increase by 3.8 percent, bringing total tuition to $39,310 for the Graduate School and $40,340 for both the Law School and the Master of Business Administration Program.