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How the Government Shutdown Affects Us

Although the main people affected by the government shutdown are the 800,000 government employees that won’t be getting paid, we, as college students, can be affected too. Whether you want to travel or conduct research, this government shutdown could impact your plans. Here are the top things to know about the government shutdown’s impact on you.


National Parks

  • Although most national parks, recreation areas and monuments usually don’t operate during government shutdowns, they are staying open during this shutdown.
  • However, many rangers and staffers won’t be on duty, so there will be limited access.
  • The plan is to keep them as accessible as possible.


  • Traveling will most likely not be affected, but there could be some delays due to the fact that “non-essential” employees are furloughed.
  • The State Department’s passport services are funded partly by fees, which means that the Department may be still able to issue passports for a short time because they’re not completely dependent on Congress for money.


  • For those students who are conducting research, the shutdown could negatively impact your research.
  • There’s a pause on approval for new funding, so researchers may not receive new payments.
  • Many researchers receive funds in portions, so they may miss the one coming up.

Federal Aid

  • < 10% of the Department of Education’s staff would be working during the 1st week of the shutdown.
  • A maximum of 6% would be working, if the shutdown lasts longer than a week.
  • This means less staffers would be available to help students and universities.
  • The federal funding aid is most likely safe for the rest of the 2017-2018 academic year.
  • Colleges also depend on higher education funds for paying expenses of staff running programs.
  • These programs help disadvantaged students who are trying to enter and stay in college.


Photo Sources: [Cover Photo by Jomar Thomas on UnsplashPhoto 1, Photo 2 by Jon Tyson on UnsplashPhoto 3Photo 4]

Information Sources: [www.studybreaks.com, www.npr.org, www.mlive.com, www.nytimes.org, abc.news.go, cbsnews.com]

Shania is a journalism and political science student at The University of Georgia, graduating in May 2021. She loves writing and spent the first couple years of her college career writing and editing for Her Campus!
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