there's something I've been curious about regarding the funding of labs in graduate schools. I imagine it's different in different schools, but there's probably a most common scenario.
How is money managed for a lab? My most naive understanding is that the lab mostly gets money from grants. But what happens when a lab runs out of grant money? I assume the school doesn't want a major lab supporting several students and postdocs just folding, so I'm guessing they lend them money.
For example, the are several common facilities at my school that charge the lab when students use them (electron microscopes, etc). I know we're short on money right now, but I've never heard of anyone not being able to use the facilities. I would definitely make sense to me that the school internally lets a lab rack up debt to them with the expectation that it'll be paid back when they get grants in the future.
But how does it work for peoples' paychecks, and non-school payments? I know our lab also has a p-card. Does that mean we may be racking up debt externally?