Government shutdown has little effect on Marywood


Thirty-five day government shutdown has little affect on Marywood.

Briana Ryan

The record-breaking 35-day government shutdown caused disruptions across various government offices but only minimal effects on higher education institutions.

Financial Aid

As called for by the government shutdown contingency plan released by the Department of Education, more than 90 percent of total financial aid staff was furloughed during the first week of the shutdown. However, Director of Financial Aid Barbara Schmitt said the shutdown had no impact on financial aid at Marywood.

“The funds for 2018-19 were appropriated during the last fiscal year so funding has been available for students,” said Schmitt.

The 2019-20 FAFSA applications were not affected either.

Research Grants

Assistant to the Provost for Research and Sponsored Programs Dr. Diane Keller said funds that have already been awarded to institutions were unaffected. Keller said the only professor who had been awarded funds for research was given the funds promptly.

Keller also said another professor was waiting to hear back about funds during the time of the government shutdown and that there were no issues for the professor during the application process.

Aviation Management Program

Transportation Security Administration (TSA) employees are part of the Department of Homeland Security and as a result, worked without pay during the duration of the shutdown.

Junior Aviation Management Major Yousf Almoumin, Marywood Aviation Club president, said the government shutdown did not affect the training of students in the Aviation Management Program. Almoumin said even though no students were affected, they still felt compelled to help those who were.

The club donated three full boxes of canned goods, pasta, cereal, peanut butter and three cases of bottled water to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport TSA employees.

“TSA keeps our country safe so we wanted to show them our appreciation for that during this rough time for them,” said Almoumin.

On Jan. 25, President Donald Trump agreed to reopen the government for a three-week period pending a new deal on border security. House of Representatives and Senate negotiators agreed in principle on such an agreement earlier this week, but the President hasn’t committed to signing the legislation. Another partial shutdown is possible on Feb. 15 but is viewed as unlikely by most government observers.

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Twitter: @BrianaRyanTWW