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May 12, 2017

Dear colleagues:

The first day of summer is still a month away, but we are already looking at next year’s academic calendar. 

Again this year, we will provide leave benefit eligible employees with three additional paid gift days during our Reduced Service Days (December 27-29). For employees in union-represented bargaining units, the plan will be discussed through the required collective bargaining process.

The holiday gift days extend a successful pilot program launched last year and are an expression of our deep gratitude for your hard work, loyalty and commitment to excellence. Our employees have enabled the University of Illinois System to stand strong and flourish despite the financial challenges we are facing. We will evaluate the program again after this year’s holidays.

The program is reflected in the 2017 Reduced Service Schedule that will be distributed to employees this month. Our universities, hospital and clinics, and System human resource offices will follow up with more details, including how to report the gift days and the process for essential employees who must work on December 27, 28 or 29.

Our faculty and staff are the cornerstone of the U of I System’s standing as a global leader in education and discovery, and its life-changing contributions to students and the public good. We hope this program reflects just how much we value each of you, and that your 2017 holiday season is filled with family, friends and joy.


Tim Killeen, President, University of Illinois System
Barb Wilson, Executive Vice President, University of Illinois System
Michael Amiridis, Chancellor, University of Illinois at Chicago
Robert Jones, Chancellor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Susan Koch, Chancellor, University of Illinois at Springfield