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Grad students struggle with rising fees

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Science  16 Aug 2019:
Vol. 365, Issue 6454, pp. 630
DOI: 10.1126/science.365.6454.630

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Summary

To help offset declines in state funding, many U.S. public universities are billing their graduate students for thousands of dollars of university fees. The charges, many of them new or recently increased, frequently come as a shock to master's and Ph.D. students in science, technology, engineering, and math fields who expect their years of training to be financially feasible because they do not pay tuition and receive modest stipends for their research and teaching work. At Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, for example, grad students are charged $4900 per year in student fees—a sum that has more than doubled in 5 years. "It's really hard to be a student here," says a physics Ph.D. student at the university. "I know a ton of people who are relying on food banks."

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