University of Pennsylvania Ph.D. Students Are About To Get a Big Raise

The largest raise in Penn's history will go into effect in the 2023-2024 academic year. Programs will have the option to raise the stipend above the minimum $38,000.
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  • A nearly 25% raise will bring the minimum stipend from $30,547 to $38,000.
  • The Graduate and Professional Student Assembly collaborated with Penn's administration for the raise.
  • The raise will go into effect in the 2023-2024 academic year

Ph.D. students at the University of Pennsylvania (Penn) are getting the largest raise in the university's history starting in the 2023-2024 year.

Penn announced last month that it will raise the Ph.D. student minimum stipend from $30,547 to $38,000, almost a 25% increase.

The historic increase is a product of collaboration between Penn's nine schools with P.h.D. programs, several university offices, and the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly (GAPSA). Each program can choose whether to increase pay above the minimum.

"This one-time increase recognizes the unique pressures they currently face, especially in the wake of delays to research and hiring that many experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic," said interim Provost Beth A. Winkelstein. "It will also help to ensure that Penn remains competitive in recruiting exceptional scholars in our Graduate Groups."

Ludwig Zhao, GAPSA's research council chair and third-year Ph.D. student, said that the university's quick actions surprised and excited GAPSA.

"We are really happy at the effort to raise the stipends to better meet the needs of Ph.D. students and to be competitive with other Ivies, and we look forward to continued communication," said Zhao.

Vice Provost for Education Karen Detlefsen recognized how valuable GAPSA was in raising the minimum stipend.

"We identified the minimum stipend as a priority based on a survey of graduate and professional students conducted in the spring, on our discussions with GAPSA, and on our own reflections about how we can continue to best serve our students," said Detlefsen. "Their advocacy and insights galvanized our own work to address these important matters and moved the effort forward, helping us to shape these improvements to the graduate student experience."