Rao on what sequestration will mean to VCU

As the nation moves closer to nearly $1 trillion in automatic spending cuts, VCU’s president outlines how it may affect the University.


With the roughly $1 trillion in automatic federal spending cuts scheduled to take effect Friday as a result of the sequestration, VCU President Michael Rao recently released a letter outlining the possible ramifications those cuts may have on VCU and the VCU Health System communities.

“I have met with federal lawmakers in Washington, D.C., to discuss sequestration and how we must work together to prevent a worst-case scenario from becoming a reality,” Rao said. “It is important for everyone to understand the profound impacts of sequestration and have a voice in mitigating the dire consequences.”

Among those he lists is a possible $21 million reduction to VCU by the end of September. Many of these cuts would affect the VCU Massey Cancer Center and the VCU Center for Clinical and Translational Research. Between 100-200 positions funded by research grants could also be eliminated.

Rao said financial aid would be affected too, with over 700 students earning roughly five percent less aid if the sequestration occurs. A federal program that supports low-income students could also be cut by almost 33 percent.

Other federal cuts could have an indirect influence on VCU.

“It is also very likely that steep cuts to federal defense spending would reduce state income tax levels in Virginia, making it possible that state agencies like VCU would be asked to return some funds already appropriated in the state budget,” Rao said.


photo courtesy of VCU

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Nathan Cushing

Nathan Cushing is a writer, journalist, and RVANews Editor.

8 comments on Rao on what sequestration will mean to VCU

  1. Reighning Blows on said:

    Who would have guessed bloated VCU over extended itself. And its the greedy taxpayers fault. People in the private sector need to cough up more tax money for the parasitic “public” sector. I know a couple of liberal losers leeching off the taxpayers doing supposed “work” at VCU. Why dosent the arrogant govt. pay the damn taxes, since they create so much wealth and prosperity in all the “work” they do.

  2. Uh, you are aware that the sequester isn’t VCU’s fault, and that all other state colleges and universities are equally affected, right?

  3. Rob Sterling on said:

    “Roughly $1 trillion”? All the other coverage I’ve read has it at “roughly” $85 billion, which is roughly 1/12th the amount you indicate.

  4. Jason on said:

    @blowhard–bitter much?
    Plus how is VCU bloated? Take a look at what other colleges VCUs size are spending and you’ll quickly realize VCU is rather lean

  5. Scott Burger on said:
  6. @ Rob – Sequestration projections are based on the 10 year federal budget projection— $85 billion would possibly be cut over the remaining months in this calendar year with a cumulative value of $1.2 Trillion over 10 years.

    Terrible for research either way. NIH/CDC core funding is at the lowest point in a decade. Fewer grants, fewer labs, fewer opportunities for new scientists, fewer long term projects/short term projects for established experts– It’s been 30 years since the development of a new antibiotic drug, pair that with resistant bacteria and a system that produces fewer microbiologists, epidemiologists, etc., etc., and it could be a real drag on these sorts of gradual developments; corrections vis-a-vie the student loan bubble, the high risk / low reward of advanced education, ‘boom’, you’ve lost pace with the future.

  7. imagination-nation on said:

    More spam in my inbox from Dr. Rao. I’m gonna have to set up a filter to delete this *stuff* right away.

  8. Guv Stinks on said:

    Like all govt. enterprises, its bloated. I like how Rao went to Washington D.C. to beg. Rao should get a cardboard sign like the other beggin bums, there no difference. Hope this helps

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