Board approves 2021-22 room and board rates

April 13, 2021

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State’s benchmark room and board rate for the 2021-22 academic year — based on a standard double room and the most common meal plan — will increase by $203 per semester, or 3.45% over the 2020-21 rates, under a plan approved today (April 13) by the Penn State Board of Trustees.  

Under the approved plan, the cost of a standard double room, which comprises the largest percentage of the University’s room inventory, would increase by $136 per semester to $3,563, and the cost of the mid-level meal plan — the most popular option — would rise by $67 per semester to $2,516, bringing the total semester room and board rate to $6,079 for the 2021-22 academic year. 

John Papazoglou, associate vice president for Auxiliary and Business Services, said Housing and Food Services has prioritized reducing costs and increasing efficiencies, including introducing new technologies such as mobile ordering; reducing inventory and food waste costs; optimizing purchasing strategies; and prioritizing capital investments. 

Despite these efforts, he said the modest rate increase is needed to help meet rising costs in operations and facilities maintenance, as well as projected cost increases related to food procurement, payroll and operation of the Residence Life program. 

“Since the start of the pandemic, Housing and Food Services has really done a great job providing care and comfort to students across the commonwealth during a very uncertain time.  I’m very proud of the work of our team, and we are looking forward to continuing to serve our students this coming fall,” Papazoglou said. 

The University’s Housing and Food Services is a self-supporting unit, and fees earned from students and guests for food and lodging are the only funds available to pay for operating expenses. No state appropriations funds or tuition dollars are used to support Housing and Food operations. 

University residence halls and apartments accommodate approximately 20,400 students at Abington, Altoona, Beaver, Behrend, Berks, Brandywine, Greater Allegheny, Harrisburg, Hazleton, Mont Alto and University Park campuses. Housing rates specific to each campus and various living units can be found online at  


Last Updated April 13, 2021