I just received the details about Purdue's graduate assistantship offer. They offer $16800 per year (12 months), minus tax, minus $2033 in various university fees. Let's assume that I am in the 15% federal tax bracket (can someone confirm the validity?). I don't even know what Indiana's state income tax is. Then I will end up getting about $1020 per month. The cheapest on-campus graduate student housing option is about $445 per month (this includes electricity, local-area phone, etc). Let's assume that I will spend $15 per day on average on meals, coffee, and groceries. Then, I will be left with about $125 for all other possible kinds of expenses (cell phone, car insurance, clothing, gym, etc). So, I am a little confused about how I am gonna live on this stipend. Perhaps my assumptions about food costs or other expenses are wrong?
(shocked a little after earning near $30K/year on my half-time job for the past few years.. but those moneys were already spent on undergraduate education and graduate application fees)
Perhaps I should engage in some drastic cost cutting: drop the car, cell phone, and settle for living in a tripple dorm room or co-op house.. but this sounds so freshman year. I hoped I could live with some privacy and certain "luxury" items as a grad student.
Suddenly, UC-Irvine's 15600K/9 months TAship with no fees to pay sounds a lot more livable.