Wisconsin's 50% Funding

Forum for the GRE subject test in mathematics.
algebraicallyminded
Posts: 39
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2013 4:37 am

Wisconsin's 50% Funding

Postby algebraicallyminded » Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:45 pm

Weeks ago, I got into the University of Wisconsin-Madison (Math, PhD) and today I received the official offer. From the offer letter, what I do not really understand is the following: "... this guarantee of financial support is at least 50% ($15,342)." It seems like the amount I am guaranteed to receive a year is 15k, but at the same time, the word "50%" makes me wonder if there is any additional meaning to it. Did anyone think about the same thing?

visgraf
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2014 8:23 pm

Re: Wisconsin's 50% Funding

Postby visgraf » Wed Feb 25, 2015 8:04 pm

Interesting...I too received an offer from Wisconsin-Madison ~1.5 weeks ago, but I haven't received the official offer letter yet. The initial e-mail just said funding guaranteed through TAship for five years.

algebraicallyminded
Posts: 39
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2013 4:37 am

Re: Wisconsin's 50% Funding

Postby algebraicallyminded » Wed Feb 25, 2015 8:16 pm

If you see the last year's posting ( viewtopic.php?f=1&t=1523 ), it seems like the basis of funding was 21k, so I was expecting at least that amount. I was leaning toward WI, but if it is really 15k/yr, it can be a bit tight to have a life without worrying about money while studying.
Last edited by algebraicallyminded on Wed Feb 25, 2015 9:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

letendre
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2015 7:56 pm

Re: Wisconsin's 50% Funding

Postby letendre » Wed Feb 25, 2015 8:26 pm

Also admitted to Madison; have not received official offer yet. But I think 50% refers to the 20 hours per week that a graduate TA would work. Madison probably has a paysheet showing the full-time salary (and 50% of that equals $15,342). Not sure if I'm right, but if I am it'd suggest that $15,342 is indeed the guaranteed funds.

beneathebrim
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Feb 14, 2015 4:31 pm

Re: Wisconsin's 50% Funding

Postby beneathebrim » Fri Feb 27, 2015 8:21 pm

Well the $15,342 is only for the academic year--people can probably get some extra money teaching over the summer. Plus they offer $19,177 for a 62.5% position.

algebraicallyminded
Posts: 39
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2013 4:37 am

Re: Wisconsin's 50% Funding

Postby algebraicallyminded » Sat Feb 28, 2015 1:10 am

Well the problem is that only 15k/yr is the guaranteed amount. It is possible to have more funding but it seems risky to me to rely on such competitions.

bulla
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2014 11:12 am

Re: Wisconsin's 50% Funding

Postby bulla » Sun Mar 01, 2015 5:54 pm

I am kinda unhappy about this. UW Madison is academically my top choice among all the universities I got in, but it has offered the least amount of financial support. Other grad schools are offering at least 20k and most of them have health insurance and 4-5k of fellowship. I talked to a current student at UW Madison who is working 50% (20hrs) and is making roughly $1500 a month, and this hardly leaves any time for additional work. But the student said that the rent ($500ish per month) and the living costs are cheap so it is a comfortable living, even if you are not saving lots of money. I would definitely ask around more people if it is easy to earn a bit more because 15k seems too little :(

letendre
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2015 7:56 pm

Re: Wisconsin's 50% Funding

Postby letendre » Mon Mar 02, 2015 7:38 pm

bulla wrote:I am kinda unhappy about this. UW Madison is academically my top choice among all the universities I got in, but it has offered the least amount of financial support. Other grad schools are offering at least 20k and most of them have health insurance and 4-5k of fellowship. I talked to a current student at UW Madison who is working 50% (20hrs) and is making roughly $1500 a month, and this hardly leaves any time for additional work. But the student said that the rent ($500ish per month) and the living costs are cheap so it is a comfortable living, even if you are not saving lots of money. I would definitely ask around more people if it is easy to earn a bit more because 15k seems too little :(


I'm not sure if it's any different for international students, but I calculated roughly $1300-1400 in monthly take-home pay considering the $15,342 stipend, 20 to 30 hours per week in part-time work during the summer, and 15% effective tax rate (is this accurate?). I'm told that it's plenty to live on in Madison, though you won't be living large obviously. The main object to consider is what percentage of your monthly take home you can put toward saving or student loans if you have those.




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