Staying Steady on State Dollars
NDSU relying on state funds as US goes through shutdown
Published: Monday, October 7, 2013
Updated: Monday, October 7, 2013 14:10
The federal government shutdown has been the subject of discussion for people across the country. Various federal agencies have been forced to send workers home, limit their operations or simply put everything to a halt.
So how does this affect NDSU, a publicly funded institution, and its students?
Well, in essence, not much at all.
“NDSU is a state-funded institution,” NDSU Student Body President Robbie Lauf said. “None of our state dollars will be affected by the federal government shutdown. State and federal are two different entities. We’re a state-funded institution so we get our dollars from here in North Dakota.”
The fact NDSU relies on funds from the state means just because the government has shutdown, does not mean campus will any time soon.
“Football games are going to go on as far as I can tell,” NSDU Faculty President Harlene Hatterman-Valenti said. “Everyone pretty much that I know of is going forward.”
That does not go to say there will not be any impact at all from the shutdown.
“The federal government’s shutdown will have an impact on NDSU,” NDSU Vice-President of Finance and Administration Bruce Bollinger said in an e-mail on Thursday. “It will mainly be in the areas that receive federal funds which are research and financial aid.”
One primary source of financial assistance NDSU relies on comes from federal grants.
“Due to the number of federal agencies and numerous federal grant systems, not all agencies have the same shutdown procedures,” NDSU Vice President of Research and Creative Activity Kelly Rusch said in a statement released to NDSU.
Grant proposal submissions to organizations such as the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation will not be readily working until system operations have begun once again.
However, work on existing grants and contracts will continue unless otherwise notified.
Though many students rely heavily on federal money, grants are not just for them. Campus staff and faculty are also affected by possible government cutoffs.
“There could be researchers who have material and research in the (United States Department of Agriculture) greenhouses on campus,” Hatterman-Valenti said. “They could be working hard to accommodate the needs of the faculty workers, even though they’re shut down.”
Alongside the USDA workers on campus, Hatterman-Valenti said other faculty members of NDSU would be touched by the shutdown as well. Though university staff might feel the shock of the government shutdown, it will be in a more indirect manner.
“Everything that I see is an indirect effect more than a direct effect,” Hatterman-Valenti said. “I’m just trying to do what I need for the students and for my research, nothing on the national basis. But from what I can tell, it shouldn’t really affect me.”
Though NDSU students will not be directly affected either, they too may feel the blow one way or another.
Lauf stressed the importance of NDSU as a part of the Fargo community, which overall will see some changes and setbacks until the government is brought back on its feet.
“It affects people who require government services,” Lauf said. “But specifically, people working at NDSU will not be affected too much.”
Many people of North Dakota will be hurt by the government shutdown, as workers will not be able to bring home pay and many federal services will be set back.
So as of now, all that NDSU – as well as the rest of the country – can do is wait.
“Hopefully this encourages people to get active in a political community and elect people that are going to get things right in (Washington D.C.),” Lauf said. “It’s tremendously frustrating for those who work in the community.”