The U.S. government shutdown must end immediately. A long term shutdown yields a long lasting impact on Community College students.
The partial U.S. government shutdown was designed to not affect schools in the event of a short-term shutdown. However, if the shutdown persists students will be greatly impacted.
This is the 18th government shutdown since 1976, but only the third to surpass two weeks of deliberation. Another two weeks of government shutdown will contribute to the ever-growing cluster of unseen paperwork.
The biggest scholastic impact of the shutdown has gone directly toward the Department of Education where 90 percent of its work force, or 4,225 employees, have been immediately furloughed.
For the time being, financial aid should go largely unaffected. Until the debt crisis is cleared up, students will see a limited impact on the FAFSA administration and the loan repayment abilities, but direct loans, Pell Grants and other financial aid dollars will continue to be distributed.
If the shutdown continues, LBCC students can expect Financial Aid to be temporarily terminated until the debt crisis is resolved. This means people receiving funds from FAFSA won’t have access to money needed for school supplies, tuition and transportation.
To make things worse, the government has shut down four of its major research websites. If you have plans to do a research paper any time soon, then you’ll need to find some extra resources. The websites for the U.S. Census, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Education Resources Information Center, the National Archives and more have not been updated since the shutdown and for the time being, can’t be referred to as reliable.
Students planning to study abroad next semester should start applying for their passport now. People applying for a passport will not be granted “last-minute” passports and can even expect major delays in the process. We strongly hope that Congress and the President will come to an agreement and pass the bill to fund government, or else we can expect to see a gradual outflow of federal programs.