Purdue nears deal for income-sharing pilot program

The Purdue Research Foundation says it is finalizing a contract for a program to pay for some students' tuition in exchange for a percentage of their income for several years after graduation.

Chief Financial Officer Brian Edelman said Tuesday the foundation was finalizing a contract with a partner firm to fund tuition. He said they are planning a pilot program with 100 to 300 students, who could get tuition funding for the entire 2016-17 school year.

The Journal & Courier in Lafayette reports Purdue announced in August that it was looking for a partner for the agreements that would act as an alternative to student loans.

University President Mitch Daniels said at the time that income share agreements would be a no-debt, low-risk option that could keep the cost of attending Purdue within the reach of all qualified students.

Purdue's faculty senate questioned Edelman and the university's legal counsel on the planned program Monday. Biological sciences professor David Sanders said the program would be "gambling" with students' future incomes.

Under the plan as explained in August, a student would draw from an investment pool to get money to pay for tuition and agree to repay with a portion of the student's future income over a fixed period of time. Rather than accrue interest, payments would adjust with the graduate's income.

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