SOC304 – PhD’s Guide to Money in Grad School


If you hang around grad students, you’ll discover one of our favorite topics to discuss is money. We’re usually grumbling about funding, side gigs, constantly filling out applications for scholarships that we don’t get, and how we wiiiiiiish we had enough money to not have to live with roommates anymore. So in this PhD’s Guide, we’re gonna explore this topic by looking at the typical jobs available in grad school (including average stipend pay), what you should expect funding-wise from your department, and some academic job opportunities you can find to supplement your TA stipend. Tune in here to learn more about the precariousness of being a grad student!


academia, budgets, funding, grad, graduate, masters, money, phd, school


  1. GA is a Graduate Assistant who may help administratively in a department (i.e. organize a small sized conference, bring in speakers, run the social media account of the department, etc.) and take on light researching duties.
  2. RA is a Research Assistant who works on a specified research project for either a professor or a research institute that is housed within the university system.
  3. TA is a Teaching Assistant who helps a professor or lecturer teach large undergraduate courses. Most duties include holding office hours for students, grading, proctoring exams, etc.
  4. We cited a CNN report from 2018, “How Graduate Students Pay for School”
  5. Interested in how a university with a unionized graduate student body works? Check out Rutgers! Collective bargaining for the win, y’all!
  6. Kanye is thinking about legally becoming, “Kanye Christian Genius Billionaire West”
  7. Washington Post article, “What we know about the mysterious vaping-linked illness and deaths,” in case you haven’t read the 100,000 news reports about it yet!
  8. Omar mentioned how our response to vaping deaths are driven in part by moral panics. What is a moral panic?
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