Three years ago I started a Ph.D to help develop community interventions that address the effects of adverse childhood experiences among adults in our community. I’ve worked with amazing people here in Merced, and working with a local church and pastor I’ve seen the work improve the lives of people grappling with the effects of child abuse.
The most recent House Republican tax reform plan might change all this. The tax reform bill includes a recommendation that tuition waivers for graduate students be counted as income and subject to taxes. As a graduate student, I make less than $25,000 a year and this would raise my taxable income by over $15,000. I’ve passed on high-paying tech jobs in the Silicon Valley so I can stay here in the Central Valley and address the health disparities in my community.
If this tax plan becomes law I might not be able to afford to finish my degree or the community projects I’ve spent years on.
W. Kyle Hamilton, Merced