If you are planning to attend Purdue, you will find the following information useful. If you have questions or concerns please contact us. We'll do our best to help you. We are hoping to match you newcomers with our existing members so that you will have at least one person to help you during your first week.
If you are still in the process of deciding, here are the rankings for Purdue:
You can see the reviews of happy students in Purdue in the following link. All of them share similar ideas with us. The general idea is that being a student in Purdue is a privilege except some challenges.
Cost of Living
Life is not very expensive in West Lafayette. An income of 1500$ (untaxed) would provide you your basic needs. Check with your school's undergraduate/graduate office about any additional fees you need to pay. International students and engineering students are generally asked to pay more fees.
The main advantage of housing in campus is being close to the campus. It means you can get extra time for your free time, not for your study time :) The rent covers all utilities such as water, electricity, wireless internet and heating. You can see the details clicking following link:
You can find some apartment complexes near to the campus at Wabash Landing. Wabash is very popular amongst students. If you are lucky, you can acquire a very good suit. If not, at least one year you have to be patient about your accommodation. To be honest, if you would like to stay close to the campus, there are not too many options for housing. You can find different apartments using the following links:
You need to have a bank account here to transfer money. At the beginning of first semester, Chase Bank and Purdue Federal Credit Union (PEFCU) have tables in Purdue Memorial Union (PMU) and in the welcoming (WOW) sessions given by the International Students and Scholars (ISS) and in the campus to open a bank account for you. These are only two main banks out of many other banks. It is totally up to you to choose which bank. Since PEFCU is a credit union (slightly different than a bank), it provides a credit card as soon as you open an account, but for Chase and other banks you should have a credit history built up before you can get one. You will build up a credit history by paying your bills on time. Credit history is an important concept in American life. You need one if you want to get a contract for a phone, take credit for a car, house etc. You can get a prepaid phone till you get on a contract by the way.
Within the city, the public transportation is carried out with buses from CityBus. You don't need to pay for transportation as long as you have a Purdue ID. Yet, since grocery stores are outside of the downtown and the weather is harsh, you will be happier if you buy a car. You can find a second hand car for a low price (~ 3000$). If you decide to buy a car, Craigslist might be a good place to get an idea about the prices. Be aware of scams though!
To travel out of town your options are the AMTRAK trains and Greyhound buses. To travel to airports, you can use Express Aircoach for Chicago Airports and Star of America for Idianapolis International Airport. these are the two closest airports to West Lafayette.
As international students, we need to have a valid health insurance at all times to maintain our visa status. If you have a medical problem, you'll need to visit Purdue Student Healt Center (PUSH). Please be aware that PUSH might not meet all of your needs. for instance, they are not open on Saturdays. For cases like that, you can visit St. Elizabeth. If it is an emergency, please call 911! Even though you are insured, you will be paying a certain portion of the cost. So we recommend you to study your insurance plan well. Recently, Purdue started to offer dental insurance to grad students. Please contact your business office for further details.
West Lafayette Community and Daily Life
The community here is a widely diverse one due to many international students studying in Purdue. Yet, it is a small town, so social life is limited. That is why we recommend joining to student clubs and especially to TSA!!! You can check available clubs from GetInvolved page. We recommend that you don't stay home and do start socializing as soon as you come over here since the classes get harder and the weather goes harsher pretty fast here.
For your groceries you can go to Walmart, Payless or Target. If you would like to have some Turkish merchandise and hallal food, Kyber Market sells a decent variety of goods. If you are interested about other cuisines, you can get Indian food supplies from Food Mart, Asian food supllies from the Asian Market in the Wabash Landing. We would also recommend online shopping from Amazon for books or items you can not find in the local stores.
You can check Chauncey Hill and Lafayette downtown for restaurants. For clothing, you can visit Tippecanoe Mall and TJ Max. For stationaries, University Bookstore is the most popular choice.
We have a wonderful recreational center in Purdue. Even if you are not interested in sports, you should check it out. You can sign up for classes from kickbox to yoga. We do also have a huge climbing wall that should be challenged as well :)