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CFAES Wooster


Academic Winter Recess

Submitted by the CFAES Office of the Vice President and Dean

CFAES Colleagues:

To give ample time for planning, the university has announced we will not have an academic recess over winter break in the coming academic year and therefore, we need to plan accordingly.

We know many of you on 12-month appointments appreciated the academic recess during the pandemic. We have heard from some within the college that this is disappointing news. Ohio State is a large institution including a large medical center, requiring decisions that consider many complex factors. For many of you, we know it extended beyond being a mere benefit, allowing you to manage competing priorities during a busy personal season of the year.

What is shared in the bullets below is general guidance. Given the communication from the university, we will adhere to university policy while attempting to balance and support work/life balance as much as possible. However, employees should work with their direct supervisors to determine what is appropriate for their specific work situations regarding the following:

  • Where possible, we encourage the use of vacation time during this timeframe.
  • In recognizing that vacation time is not possible for every employee during this time, we encourage utilizing flexible work arrangements (e.g. remote work, flexible hours, or compressed work week) where it makes sense.
  • Related, and where possible, we encourage units to consider facilitating remote open offices during this time with appropriate and clear signage.
  • For those unable to take vacation yet have the flexibility in their workload, we encourage this time to be spent on professional development, which can include a wide range of activities: engaging in some desired or required trainings, reflective and goal-setting time, and reconnecting with colleagues.
  • We encourage units not to schedule any meetings during the week of December 25th.

We know the above is not the same as the winter recess, but we want to provide TIU heads and unit leaders with as much flexibility as possible. We will be asking TIU heads and unit leaders to develop plans appropriate for the work of their respective units.

We also recognize, based on business needs of the college and the assigned duties of some of our employees, none of the above options may be possible. In those cases, we recommend to supervisors they consider these options before or after the week of December 25th.

To meet our goals and accomplish our mission, it takes all of us and we greatly value the contributions each of you make. We hope with some thoughtful discussions and planning, we can provide as much flexibility as possible. Thank you.