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U. increases financial aid budget by 7.2 percent for 2019–20 academic year

Nassau in day
Photo Credit: Jon Ort / The Daily Princetonian

On Thursday, April 25, the Office of Communications announced that the University trustees have “adopted an operating budget for the University totaling $2.3 billion for 2019–20.” Of this total budget, $187.4 million — up 7.2 percent from last year’s $174.2 million — will go towards undergraduate financial aid.

Over the next year, the University predicts that the average financial aid package will increase 6.6 percent from $53,100 to $57,100 among the over 60 percent of undergraduate students who receive financial aid each year.


This altered budget accompanies an increase in the cost of housing, room, and board from $65,810 to $69,020, or a 4.9 percent increase.

The increased budget follows a recommendation made by the University’s Priorities Committee, which submitted its annual report to President Christopher Eisgruber ’83 on April 1.

In addition to recommending the increase in financial aid, the Priorities Committee also recommended the 4.9 percent increase in the fee package, citing the importance of “tuition revenue to support the excellence of teaching and research at the University.”

In the report, Provost Deborah Prentice — the University’s chief budget officer and the Priorities Committee chair — estimated that net revenue from undergraduate tuition “will increase by 1.1 percent to $84.3 million” for the 2020 fiscal year.

“This continues a longer-term pattern of nearly flat net revenue growth for undergraduate tuition for the past two decades,” Prentice wrote.

According to the Office of Communications statement, “the University insulates students on aid from increasing costs of attendance” by recalculating aid packages each year “to offset increases to tuition, room, board and other expenses and to take into account changes in the family’s financial circumstances.”


“We follow the simple but important principle that a Princeton education should be affordable and accessible to any family,” Prentice said in the statement. “The financial aid office makes extraordinary efforts to determine parental contributions that are fair, given each individual family’s resources.”

Eisgruber presented the proposed budget to the trustees on April 7.

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