Republican tax plan could slam graduate students earning less than $30,000

The Republican tax plan is designed to be confusing. They don’t want us to know everything that’s in it ahead of time, because we’d notice how bad it is for us. So little bits of information trickle out, like this in the Chronicle of Higher Education, and they don’t necessarily get the attention they deserve:

The plan would also tax the tuition waivers that many graduate students receive when they work as teaching assistants or researchers.

Claus Wilke, an integrative biology professor at the University of Texas at Austin, explained on Twitter what this could mean to STEM education:

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The result? “At that point, a PhD would not be a viable choice anymore, except for the

wealthy.” Or, maybe, people who were so confident that they’d be walking out of grad school and into a job with Monsanto or a defense contractor that it was worth taking on some debt. Either way, it’s not an outcome that’s good for American higher education.

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