When the government shutdown caused a disruption in military tuition assistance, Northeastern University immediately sprung to action to help their students.
The more than 100 active service members enrolled at Northeastern, which is located in Boston, were assured right away that the university would help cover the financial assistance needed to keep these students in school while their military benefits are frozen.
“Our active duty military, Reserve, and National Guard members who put their lives on the line to protect us deserve far better from their country than to be prevented from accessing the higher education benefits they were promised,” Northeastern University President Joseph E. Aoun wrote in a letter to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.
Aoun’s letter encourages the Department of Defense to reverse the decision to stop processing military tuition assistance during the government shutdown. After hearing reports that some branches of the military were advising students to withdraw from classes or not enroll after Oct. 1, Aoun was moved to action.
“National service is deeply embedded in Northeastern’s values,” Aoun wrote. “We believe higher education has an obligation to contribute to the security of our nation, and to support the women and men of the armed forces who serve and protect us.”
Military students are not the only students who could be affected by the shutdown. Any college research program that gets funding from the federal government will be impacted. Conducting research will also be more difficult since resources like the Library of Congress and the National Archives will be closed until a resolution is found.
Students should also note that during the government shutdown, scholarly resources like the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Census and Data.gov will not be updated.
Pell grants and federal student loans are still being processed during the shutdown, but with 95% of the Department of Education currently furloughed, processing delays are almost inevitable.