1/27/23 Bursar Depository

Students have to wait months to hear back from Purdue about their in-state status.

Students who applied for in-state residency last semester have still not heard their results nearly six months later.

Purdue allows out-of-state students to apply for reclassification as an in-state resident after independently living in Indiana for a year. Students may apply through the Office of the Registrar once the portal opens on the first day of classes each semester, and all applications must be submitted within 15 business days from the first day of classes.

Keith Gehres, who is in charge of the management of the residency reclassification process, says there are only two ways to be reclassified. The first is if you are a dependent student whose legal guardian moved to Indiana and has been in the state for at least one year prior to the first day of the semester you are applying for.

“The move to Indiana must be predominantly for reasons other than to enable you to gain resident status for tuition purposes (such as moving because of a job transfer for a job located in Indiana),” Gehres said.

The next way Gehres shares is if you are an independent student and have been living in Indiana prior to the start of the semester you want to be reclassified for.

“Your domicile must be established for a predominant purpose other than attending an institution of higher education,” Gehres said.

When applying, students have to be an Indiana resident for 12 months. They are then asked to submit documents such as state and federal income tax returns, an Indiana driver’s license or state identification card and lease and mortgage documents for the past 12 months, among other documents. Students must continue paying out-of-state tuition until their application is processed and accepted.

Dauntee Trueblood, a sophomore in the College of Liberal Arts, applied for in-state residency last August. After submitting the requested documents, the Office of the Registrar is supposed to contact students via email within 40 business days on their decision. After the 40 day mark and no news from Purdue, Trueblood began calling the office every week.

“I call at least once a week, and I hear the same thing: ‘They’re behind in their applications and mine is still being processed,’” Trueblood said. “It’s been six months.”

Trueblood chose not to reapply this semester since his August application is still in the system being processed.

Caroline Stevenson, a sophomore in the Purdue Polytechnic Institute, had a similar experience to Trueblood.

Stevenson also applied in August, but after the initial 40-day period, she got an email from the Office of the Registrar asking for documents they originally did not ask for. She was then told it would be another 40 business days until she received her decision. She will supposedly find out in February.

“It’s annoying and hard to go through, but it’s just something you have to do,” Stevenson said.

Stevenson has been in contact with the Office of the Registrar, which recommended setting up a payment plan.

“I’ve paid my tuition for both semesters this year out of state, but I’m told that once I’m approved I’ll get my money back in credit that will go towards next year’s tuition,” Stevenson said.

The Office of the Registrar states on their website that “all applications are reviewed in the order that they are received.”

It has been six months since Trueblood and Stevenson have applied for reclassification, and they are among many other students with similar stories.

Gehres said that as the Purdue student body grows, so does the number of students seeking reclassification.

“A specific challenge we face is that every application submitted is treated with the same level of attention and thoroughness,” Gehres said.

The evaluation process can be overwhelming for both staff and students, so the Office of the Registrar will be growing and improving through the addition of staff and more support in customer service, Gehres said.

“We continue to evolve our process to make it both more student-friendly when and where possible, as well as assisting staff in the timeliness of rendering decisions,” Gehres said.

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