Severe weather — Classes and non-essential activities canceled for Monday, Jan. 6

The following message was sent to University of Chicago faculty, staff and students on Jan. 4, 2014, from Nim Chinniah, Executive Vice President for Administration and Chief Financial Officer; Karen Warren Coleman, Vice President for Campus Life; and Rich Iorio, Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer:

The National Weather Service is predicting heavy snow for the Chicago area through Sunday evening, with temperatures dropping to dangerously low levels by Monday. For the latest information on the weather, please see the National Weather Service warning pages.

Many students, faculty, and staff are traveling back to campus after the winter break, and the weather conditions here and across the country are creating hazardous travel and canceled flights. Therefore, the President and Provost, in discussion with the deans, have canceled all classes and non-essential activities for Monday, January 6.   

The Laboratory Schools and all four campuses of the University of Chicago Charter School also have canceled classes for Monday. All classes are expected to resume on Tuesday.

As a residential University, many functions will continue. Residence halls and dining commons will remain open. The Library has also made plans to open some of its facilities. Essential safety personnel, including University police and Facilities employees, will provide key services, though security officers will be removed from outdoor posts if temperatures drop to unsafe levels. Transportation services, including shuttle buses, will operate on a regular schedule unless conditions make that impossible or unsafe. The University of Chicago Medicine will continue to operate its hospitals and clinics. Please check the University website for continuing updates. Many units will issue additional guidance specific to their school, division, or department.

But we urge students, faculty, other academic personnel, and staff to avoid travel if possible. University employees who perform non-critical functions are not expected to come to campus. Because Monday is a workday, we ask employees who can perform their jobs remotely to do so. Employees should consult with their supervisors about questions specific to their roles and assignments. Medicine and Biological Sciences Division personnel who perform essential clinical or other functions will be expected to work on Monday. Other Medicine and BSD personnel should contact their respective supervisors to determine if they need to report for work.

Whether you are in Hyde Park or elsewhere, please plan ahead for the severe weather and take extra precautions. The wind-driven snow may create hazardous travel conditions, while the predicted temperatures and wind chills could lead to frostbite or hypothermia. Stay inside if you can. If you are traveling, please make sure you have warm clothing with you and readily available.  As temperatures drop, make sure to cover any exposed skin. Conditions are changing quickly, and we ask you to put your safety first as you adapt to the situation.

University leaders are closely monitoring the situation, and we will communicate plans and guidance in greater detail as warranted. Please continue to check www.uchicago.edu for updates.

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