Published: Feb. 17, 2021

As the pandemic continues, many employees report burnout as work and life demands remain high. More than ever, we need to prioritize the health and wellness of everyone in our CU Boulder community. This includes supporting time away from work to prioritize family, friends, and mental and physical health.  

Provost Russ Moore

Russell Moore

During the past year, many staff have accumulated substantial furlough days and vacation time. We support you taking this time off and using it simply to unplug and focus on selfcare, family, and your overall health and wellness. 

For those that supervise, we need you to model these behaviors. Take time away yourself. Communicate with your staff that you support them taking time away from work and using their paid leave entitlements. Communicate to your staff that you expect them to take leave and coordinate work schedules to allow it. Don’t glorify endless work and not using vacation leave. We recognize that time away for employees and supervisors can impact unit operations. We urge you to look for flexible solutions to support time off so that you and your employees can begin to create more work-life balance. 

Please take your excess leave before July 1. 

Chief Operating Officer Patrick O'Rourke

Patrick O'Rourke

Last year, the Board of Regents allowed campuses to waive the usual vacation carryover limits at their discretion, and CU Boulder did so. That provision is set to expire on July 1. The state also waived carryover limits for classified employees. 

University staff and 12-month faculty and can carry up to 352 hours (44 days) of vacation leave from one fiscal year into the next. Anyone with a balance over 352 hours on July 1 will lose excess hours during the annual leave sweep performed after the July payrolls. So, again, please take this time—not just because a policy requires it, but because you’ve earned it, and your physical, mental and spiritual health will benefit from it. 

Classified staff carryover hours are determined by years of service with the maximum of 336 hours (prorated for part time). Classified leave rules are governed by the Colorado State Personnel Board Rules. The state has not yet issued guidance on whether classified staff excess leave will be swept.

Please review the Use your excess vacation leave by July 1 article published by Employee Services for more information on leave accruals and how to check your leave balances. Then work with your supervisor to schedule leave appropriately. 

Words fail to express the gratitude we feel to all on campus who have not merely endured the past year, but whose work has helped the university to rise and meet one of the most difficult challenges in its long life. You’ve done that with courage, character and commitment to the university. We encourage you to live out an equal commitment to yourselves. Take your time off, with our thanks and support, and with that of our entire CU Boulder community. 


Russell Moore

Patrick O’Rourke
Chief Operating Officer