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December 15, 2017

Photos by Matt Volz/AP, Meredith Nierman/WGBH News. Photo illustration by Emily Judem/WGBH News

Republican lawmakers are rushing to pass a sweeping $1.5 trillion tax plan before Christmas. With the legislation, changes and consequences are coming for higher education – and how we pay for it. Educators say the bill will serve financial blows to public schools and colleges, students and their families. 

In our third episode of WGBH’s continuing series, On Campus Radio explores what the big adjustments mean for students and schools as lawmakers mark up the tax bill. 

First, Kim Rueben (@taxfox), a senior fellow and director of the State and Local Finance Initiative at the Urban-Brookings Institute, will give us a closer look at the implications for both K-12 and higher education in the proposed tax bill. She says the legislation could change how state and local property taxes that fund public schools are deducted by homeowners and how universities structure their bonds. 

Then, WGBH's Kirk Carapezza (@KirkCarapezza) visits Wellesley College (@Wellesley) to explore how a proposed tax on schools with large endowments would impact private colleges. While Wellesley and other highly-selective schools say the legislation would reduce how much financial aid they can give students in the future, Thomas Gilbert, an economist at the University of Washington, thinks an excise tax on large endowments would nudge them to commit more resources to students and research today. 

We'll also speak with Ted Mitchell, president of the American Council on Education (@ACEducation), about how proposed changes to the tax code will affect fundraising and investment in public and private higher education.

And finally, we sit down with Nicholas Lemann(@NicholasLemann), a professor at the Columbia School of Journalism, and Gail Mellow (@GailOMellow), the president of LaGuardia Community College (@LaGuardiaCC) in New York City. Lemann and Mellow helped author a new report by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences about the future of undergraduate education and what challenges remain to ensure a quality education. The report concludes schools should do much more in the classroom to help students finish college.

On Campus Radio, Episode 1: The State of Free Speech On Campus

On Campus Radio, Episode 2Diversity, Now

You can download the On Campus Radio podcast on iTunes here.

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