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James W. Dean Jr., executive vice chancellor and provost, sent an email message to the campus community today about the University’s careful preparation for the partial shutdown of the federal government.  Here’s the message:

Dear Faculty, Staff and Students:

As you probably are aware, the federal government has activated a partial shutdown as our nation’s elected officials consider how to resolve issues related to the federal budget.

The University has been carefully planning for this scenario and is well prepared. Our senior leadership team is monitoring the situation and coordinating closely with the appropriate agencies of the federal and state governments as we determine the possible impact on the University.

At this point, every indication is that a short-term shutdown would have a minimal impact on the U.S. higher education community. Currently, the University is operating on a normal basis. We will continue to use available funds to support work related to research contracts and grants. Students who are receiving federal financial aid should not experience any changes to their awards.

No one can predict how long the shutdown might last. A longer-term scenario could present challenges for some areas of University operations, and we will continue our analysis to determine what steps the campus may potentially need to take moving forward.

We are committed to keeping you informed about how the federal government shutdown affects our campus. The University’s Office of Research Communications last spring created a website to help the campus community access information about federal sequestration and budget process. That has been modified today to spotlight information about the shutdown. Please visit to find relevant information, including specific federal agency communications and links to individual agency shutdown plans.

In addition, our vice chancellors and other senior administrators will communicate directly with you if needed about the federal shutdown and operations in areas including research administration and human resources.


James W. Dean Jr.

Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost

Published October 1, 2013.