Published: Feb. 3, 2017

Vice Chancellor for Research & Innovation Terri Fiez

Vice Chancellor for Research & Innovation Terri Fiez

In recent weeks, the tenor of conversations about events shaping our nation has intensified noticeably. As a member of the campus’ leadership, I wanted to reach out to let you know we are closely monitoring how changes might affect our research community. We are also reaching out to colleagues on campus and across the country to better understand potential changes, impacts and the perspectives across our campus.

Changes at the federal level in the last few weeks have created anxiety about other changes that will come and how they could affect our research, faculty, staff and students. Last week a freeze was put in place and then lifted on all EPA contracts and grants. An executive order placed new restrictions on immigration and travel. This order, the subject of the Chancellor’s Corner last week, has left many in our university community feeling uneasy about their security and support. We also anticipate more changes but are uncertain what they will be.

It is important to note, at this point, we have not received formal notification of any changes in funding for our research. That said, a number of groups around campus are monitoring the situation closely—including funding trends, regulatory developments and issues affecting travel and visas—to ensure we can respond appropriately should changes take place.

In the Research & Innovation Office, we are working closely with our Federal Relations team to understand and translate any developments. The team’s expertise and network of relationships position them to anticipate changes that may come, forecast potential ramifications to the CU Boulder community and help us to develop strategies to mitigate impacts and identify emerging opportunities.

We are meeting and communicating with the federal laboratories in our community to explore ways we can work even more closely together to advance our collective research agenda. We are convening our distinguished researchers to help develop plans and communicate messages in support of the research we do here at CU Boulder. We hope by being proactive and moving quickly as needed, we can respond in support of our research regardless of what changes may or may not develop.  

I want to reassure you university leadership and my team in the Research & Innovation Office recognize there are a wide range of unanswered questions and powerful, complex and personal feelings being experienced by faculty, staff and students. We are actively seeking the facts so we can develop strategies to continue to support our researchers. We will continue to monitor the situation and keep the community informed as we learn more.

I am optimistic that by coming together as a community we can productively navigate any changes as they arise.

If you have questions or thoughts to share, please feel free to reach out to

Terri Viez,
Vice Chancellor for Research & Innovation