Graduate students stage protest of GOP tax plan changes to graduate benefits

At the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis Dr. Jeffrey Gordon and graduate student Vanessa Ridaura examine samples of gut bacteria taken from fat or lean people in 2013. Such research on obesity might be thwarted if fewer graduate stude

LSU graduate students are sounding the alarm, saying the tax reform bill passed by the U.S. House before Thanksgiving could lead to a "brain drain" in Louisiana.

Rock's taxable income - on paper - would almost double, to $44,600, under a provision eliminating the current tax exemption for the value of college tuition waivers.

About 300 to 400 graduate students and others turned out to Sproul Plaza on the UC Berkeley campus Wednesday to protest a proposed tax on their waived tuition.

Lisa Fazzino, a University of Minnesota graduate student, talks about the tuition tax change in a small group on Tuesday, Nov. 21 in the Tate lab on East Bank. Now the rule of thumb is the recommendation that you give to prospective PhD students: "If they have to pay tuition and they're not being paid a living stipend, they should not enter the PhD program".

"The House bill in its current form would have a substantial negative impact on livelihoods it threatens to increase our tax burden by nearly two hundred percent in some cases", said Chaz Lee, a graduate student and a member of Graduate Students United (GSU).

Graduate Students and supporters gather on the Pentacrest. Indeed, its proposals threaten to reverse much of the major progress we have made in recent years in encouraging saving for and participation in postsecondary education, helping students and their families pay for college, and reducing the amount of student borrowing.

Students are not the only ones upset over the House tax bill. "It's a misguided tradeoff to threaten the important scientific and academic advancements that come from hardworking graduate students as well as the training of our future teachers, nurses, social workers, etc., in order to give tax breaks to corporations and those at the top".

This would be a awful policy because it would hurt one of America's most prized and valuable possessions: excellence in advanced university research. She added some TAs informed their professor or students they would not be teaching. We have therefore asked the administration to formally recognize GAGE as the exclusive bargaining agent for Georgetown graduate workers.

If the two bills differ, a final solution may come through the reconciliation process.

Sophomore Ema Klugman addressed the crowd before they marched, listing the roles graduate students play at the University.

"Chair Sharkey and Regent Kroll's visit is especially timely since the full Senate is expected to begin debating their tax bill tomorrow", said Vice President for Government Relations Tanya Kelly-Bowry.

"For many, the additional tax burden would make it impossible for them to live", says Claudia Tomany, dean of NDSU's graduate school. UB has not released an official statement regarding the tax plan. We also urge our elected leaders to preserve the tax benefits of charitable giving. In its letter, the ACE noted that these provisions would make higher education less accessible for low- and middle-income students. "We are higher education and we will not be taken away from America!"

Regardless of what this University tells us, the real outcome of this election is that we now have a stronger community and the conscience that nothing will be better unless we make it so.

Baker said that students may never see $4,000 to $5,000 in yearly remissions.

"We're not going to get through", Teitelman said. The New York Times contacted the House Committee on Education and the Workforce for comment on the bill, and was told by a spokesperson that by increasing household income the bill will "provide more Americans with more opportunities of their choosing, including continuing education". "We call on Paxson today to speak out more about this bill and to stand up for grad students as well as others who will be affected by this bill", she added.

"We are concerned about not just its impact on the lives of individual graduate students but also on the ability of the university to carry out its teaching and research mission", Lee said. "We have to have graduate students".

"Members of the University's Governing Boards and friends of the University have also expressed their concerns to policymakers, and our federal affairs team in Washington is working around the clock with peers and others to advance our case", he wrote.

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