Gift Days 2021
March 30, 2021 9:02 AM

Dear colleagues:

We are pleased to announce that additional paid days off will again be provided during the December/January holidays, reflecting just how much we appreciate everything you do – especially in this most stressful and challenging of years.

For the sixth straight year, employees who are eligible for leave benefits will receive three paid gift days for this year’s Reduced Service Days on December 29, 30 and 31. Combined with holidays, other paid time off and weekends, it will extend the year-end break from Friday, Dec. 24, through Monday, Jan. 3. Before the program began in 2016, employees had been required to draw from their annual pool of paid time off to be paid for the three Reduced Service Days.

Our universities, hospital and clinics, and system offices will follow up with more details, including how to report the gift days and how they can be used on different days by essential employees who must work on December 29, 30 or 31. For employees in union-represented bargaining units, paid time off for the holidays is addressed through the required collective bargaining process.

The additional paid time off is part of our ongoing efforts to show how much we appreciate your hard work, resiliency, sacrifice and commitment – qualities that have shone brightly throughout the COVID-19 crisis. In the face of extraordinary challenges both on the job and at home, you have come together to not only pull the University of Illinois System through the historic storm but to literally make it a model for the nation.

Thank you for helping write a remarkable new chapter in our more than 150-year legacy of excellence. We hope the coming months bring an end to the pandemic, a return to normal activities on our campuses and in your lives and a traditional, joy-filled holiday season with family and friends.


Tim Killeen, President, U of I System

Barb Wilson, Executive Vice President and Vice President for Academic Affairs, U of I System

Robert J. Jones, Chancellor, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Michael Amiridis, Chancellor, University of Illinois Chicago

Karen Whitney, Interim Chancellor, University of Illinois Springfield

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