Snow in Light

Do You Want Extra Time Off at Christmas?

One part of my job that I will dearly miss next year when I am no longer president of St. Thomas is the opportunity to play Santa Claus long before Christmas.

My gift, made today for the last time, is to grant employees of the university extra time off again this Christmas. It’s always fun to share that kind of news.

Last year I waited until right before Thanksgiving to make the announcement. Not this year. I’m making the announcement before Halloween so you have more time to make holidays plans, and I’m offering three extra days off in December – a bonus over last year’s two.

Here is how the time off will work:

Christmas falls on a Tuesday this year, meaning that our paid holidays are Monday (Christmas Eve) and Tuesday, followed by two more paid holidays on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day (also Monday and Tuesday). We will provide three additional paid holidays on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, Dec. 26-28.

Add them all up and we will be off for 11 days in a row – Saturday, Dec. 22 through Tuesday, Jan. 1 – before returning to work on Wednesday, Jan. 2.

Some employees, including certain Public Safety officers, Physical Plant workers, IRT server administrators, Food Service workers, Development staff members and athletic coaches, may need to work during Christmas week because their services are necessary on campus. If you are uncertain whether your services are required during this period, please contact your supervisor.

Employees who are not required to work from Dec. 22 through Jan. 1 will be paid for that time period in accordance with our holiday pay policy. Employees who are required to work during the Christmas holidays will be compensated as follows:

  • Employees who are represented by a union will be paid according to the terms of their collective bargaining agreement.
  • Non-exempt (hourly) employees who are not represented by a union will receive pay for hours actually worked on the holiday in addition to their regular pay for all scheduled work hours that day.
  • Exempt (salaried) employees will receive a floating holiday for each holiday worked as arranged with their manager. The floating holidays must be used by the end of the fiscal year (June 30).

Department heads must notify Human Resources by Dec. 10 if they have employees who must work during the Christmas holidays.

During the long holiday break, we will turn down the thermostats in most of our buildings to conserve energy and save a few dollars. Prepare to bundle up if you have to work during Christmas week!