While re-examining our core values, The "Great" Debate
identified a new core value to address-the ability to offer an
affordable, but highcaliber education.
"The cost of a Rose-Hulman education is of the
utmost concern. How we deal with that will determine our
future," says Former Alumni Trustee Representative Jeff Burgan
(CHE, 1977). "That was a repeated issue raised as I spoke with
alumni from every age group and location. The cost of our
education has increased at a greater rate of inflation than
the starting salaries of our graduates," he continues.
Addressing this issue, President Robert A. Coons
states, "A personalized, cutting-edge technology education is
a very expensive proposition. We invest more than one million
dollars annually just to ensure we have state-of-the-art
He continues, "Our quest is always to be equipped
with technology that's ahead of most industries-so our
graduates have an edge when faced with the demands of the real
Clearly, sacrificing our high standards will not
be the answer. Coons points out two interrelated factors when
addressing affordability and the institute's current financial
model: our endowment dollars per student are not nearly as
high as our competitors and other private premier schools; and
Rose-Hulman has not had a comprehensive fundraising effort for
nearly a decade. This lack of adequate resources has had
an impact on scholarships and technology enhancements.
"Many top schools guarantee that they will meet
the demonstrated financial need of all their students,"
explains Coons. "While we compete academically for students
that may ultimately attend any of those fine institutions, we
can't currently compete with their endowment resources."