Grant Funding and Government Shutdown

Jan. 9, 2019

Dear Colleagues,

As of today, January 9, 2019, the federal government remains in a partial shutdown for all unfunded departments and agencies. The Offices of Research Administration and Sponsored Program Accounting are closely monitoring the situation. We will continue to provide updates to the grants management community as they are available. Faculty and research staff should continue to work with existing grant application deadlines: NSF, for example, will continue to accept proposals in accordance with published deadlines but panels will not meet.  In addition, employees in affected agencies are not allowed to work and may have lost access to online systems. 

As a reminder, the following agencies currently lack funding and are therefore operating on a limited basis:

        *    National Science Foundation

        *    Department of Homeland Security

        *    Department of Commerce (including NOAA)

        *    Environmental Protection Agency

        *    Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

        *    National Air and Space Administration

        *    National Endowment for the Humanities

        *    US AID

        *    National Institute of Standards and Technology

        *    US Department of Agriculture

Agencies affected by the shutdown have issued communications regarding their operating status. For specific agency Contingency Plans, please visit the OMB website:

The following are some of the agencies not affected by the current shutdown and are therefore operating normally: 

        *    Department of Defense

        *    Department of Education

        *    Department of Energy

        *    Department of Health and Human Services (including the National Institutes of Health)

Below are some FAQs that may be helpful for you. If you have questions/concerns about your grant funding please reach out to the Office of Research Administration or Sponsored Program Accounting.


Lisa Lynch, Provost 

Shutdown FAQs

1. What is the impact on federally-funded research projects? 

No new grants or contracts are usually awarded during a shutdown. Researchers can likely submit proposals, but they will not be reviewed until the government is operational again. A shutdown can also have negative impact on our research partnerships and collaborations with federal agencies.

Work may continue on most federally-funded projects that have already been awarded. Routine administrative and support services provided by federal agencies to grant and contract recipients likely will not be available. Awarded projects may be disrupted during a shutdown if they are housed in a federal facility, if the project includes federal personnel, and/or if an award includes restrictive terms and conditions that require administrative action to approve a drawdown of funds.

Federal agency staff likely will not be available to approve no-cost extension requests, grant transfers, re-budgeting approvals or other actions requiring agency approval.

2. What is the impact on federal financial aid?

The partial shutdown will not impact federal financial aid programs supported by the Department of Education as Congress approved FY2019 appropriations for these programs.

3. What is the impact on veterans’ education benefits and services?

The partial shutdown will not impact veterans' education benefits and services as Congress approved FY2019 appropriations for these programs.

4. What is the impact on immigration services?

Because these activities are funded by fees, most of these services are expected to remain operational during a shutdown. For additional information, view the DHS shutdown plan (

5. What is the impact on international students?

If you have questions or concerns about how the shutdown affects you as an international student, please contact the Brandeis International Students and Scholars Office ( or call 781-736-3480.

6. What is the impact on students who are interning with federal agencies? How will this affect internship credits earned?

Students who have an internship with a federal agency should contact their supervisor to determine how their work is affected by the shutdown. Students should also contact their internship coordinator at Brandeis to determine any effects on credits being earned.