Carnegie Mellon University

Impact of Partial Government Shutdown

Dear CMU Faculty and Staff:

We are sharing an update and relevant guidance regarding the current partial federal government shutdown and its potential effects on federally funded grants and contracts directed at colleges and universities, including Carnegie Mellon as well as any potential impacts on international travel.

General Information and Resources:

While many federal agencies, including the Department of Defense, Department of Education and Department of Energy, are not affected by the partial shutdown, some agencies, including National Science Foundation (NSF), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including the E-Verify program, the Department of Transportation (DoT), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), are being affected.

Please refer to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) webpage for various agency-specific contingency plans, as well as  agency-specific websites for updates regarding grants and initiatives. Some of the most relevant agency specific links for CMU researchers are below:

Guidance on Current Grants and Contracts:

In most cases, spending on current grants and contracts from an affected agency can continue, as planned, throughout their award period and budget cycle. Current grant holders should comply with any specific additional expenditure guidance they may receive from their funding agency. We also request that should you receive stop work notices from your sponsors, to please contact the Office of the Vice Provost for Research (OVPR) or Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) immediately. If the university’s central administration should receive any notices, the departments will be contacted immediately. 

However, during this shutdown period, no new funding opportunities will be announced and no new grants will be awarded by affected agencies. Unless an agency advises otherwise, recipients will be able to continue using funds already awarded, as long as activities are under the already agreed-to award budget and period, as no extensions or supplements would be processed.

Guidance on Submission of New Proposals During the Shutdown Period:

Some agencies, in particular the NSF, are still accepting proposals through online submission portals such as Fastlane and  Unless an agency has issued a specific proposal deadline extension to accommodate the shutdown, we are advising all CMU faculty and staff to assume that proposal due dates remained unchanged.

Note that personnel at federal agencies may not be available to answer questions during the federal shutdown due to staff furloughs.

Access to Federally Run Facilities:

If your work necessitates usage of a facility that is managed by an impacted agency, you are likely not able to access this facility during the shutdown period. This is explicitly true for NASA-run facilities (Note that the CMU Silicon Valley Campus, which resides at the NASA Research Park, is still open and operational during the shutdown period.)

International Travel:

At this time, travel into and out of the United States by, and benefit applications for, CMU international students, researchers and scholars should not be impacted by the shutdown. Federal services related to international travel and employment authorization, such as Citizenship and Immigration Services, Customs and Border Protection, and Department of State, are either fee-based, already funded or considered essential services. The U.S. government will continue to issue passports and visas as long as there are sufficient funds to support these operations.

Should you have any additional questions about how the shutdown may impact your research, please do not hesitate to email


Gary K. Fedder
Vice Provost for Research
Wilkoff Professor of ECE and Robotics