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Graduate assistants to get a pay raise Oct. 1 thanks to new contract

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Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013 11:48 pm | Updated: 1:49 am, Mon Aug 26, 2013.

Graduate assistants can look forward to getting a little more green for their work.

UF and Graduate Assistants United, the bargaining unit for more than 4,000 graduate assistants, agreed to a contract that includes pay raises.

About 500 graduate assistants will receive a 10 percent increase in their minimum stipends starting on Oct. 1, according to a university news release.

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“This year’s improved budget allows us to provide additional support to graduate teaching assistants,” UF President Bernie Machen said in the release. “Their contribution to our education programs is important and very much appreciated.”

The 500 students were earning less than the new minimum stipend. The new contract includes an across-the-board increase of 4.4 percent to new and existing graduate assistants’ base salaries.

“This is great news,” said UF spokeswoman Janine Sikes. “President Machen has long supported helping lift our grad students, which are an important piece of the broader university community.”

The next step for the agreement is ratification, Paula Varnes Fussell, vice president for human resource services, wrote in an email. GAU’s membership and UF’s Board of Trustees still must OK the agreement, according to the release.

“The increases are very good news and shows the commitment by the president in support of our GAs,” Fussell said.

Other compensation announcements regarding UF employees were announced earlier this summer and included eligible staff receiving a 3.5 percent salary increase and eligible faculty seeing an increase in their annual base pay, Fussell said.

Eligible faculty who earn less than $40,000 will receive a $1,400 increase in base pay, and those earning more than $40,000 will get $1,000, with the figures adjusted for part-time and full-time status, according to the release.

Funds for faculty merit raises will be available on Oct. 1 for faculty that did not qualify for the bargaining unit, according to the statement.

A version of this story ran on page 5 on 8/21/2013 under the headline "Graduate students to get pay raise beginning Oct. 1"

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