News & Events

Winter Break Closing

Winter Break Closure

In April, the Chancellor's Office announced that the University will be closed this year during the winter holiday break, to reduce fuel costs and to support our commitment to sustainability. The University will be closed beginning on December 24 and will re-open on January 5, 2015. During this time, only personnel who are required to maintain essential operations will be allowed to work on campus. Three of the scheduled closure days – December 30, 31 and January 2 -- are not considered university holidays and require employees to utilize available leave to be paid for those days.

Employees who may not have vacation or bonus leave available for the additional closure days, or those who wish to conserve those balances, are encouraged to consider utilizing available community service leave. The Staff Senate has done great work to identify a list of opportunities to utilize available community service leave. A Staff Senate flier identifying community organizations who have indicated that they can support volunteers during the winter break period can be found on the Staff Senate website at:

The flier also provides information on how to obtain approval to utilize community service leave and links to the applicable policy and request form.

Employees are not limited to the organizations identified in the Staff Senate flier but can apply available community service leave to any volunteer service allowable under the policy.

Employees who do not have available leave, including community service leave, to cover the additional closure days and for whom the days may cause a hardship are encouraged to contact Human Resources for assistance (828-262-3187).

Supervisors, please actively communicate with your employees about the winter closure. Please encourage and support use of community service leave and encourage employees to discuss their individual circumstances with Human Resources.


Email from Chancellor Peacock dated April 30, 2014.

Chancellor Kenneth E. Peacock has accepted the recommendation of the Winter Break Committee to annually close the University during the winter holiday break, beginning with December, 2014.  This recommendation stems from Appalachian’s commitment to reducing fuel costs and the University’s overall commitment to sustainability. 

This year, in addition to December 24, 25, 26, and 29, which are already considered University holidays, Appalachian employees will be required to use available leave time for December 30, 31 and January 2, 2015.  Employees who are required to work (employees deemed critical/essential) will be given detailed instructions on how to code all appropriate hours on their timesheets closer to the winter break. 

Supervisors and administrators are encouraged to work with employees regarding alternative work schedules, alternative work locations on campus, flex schedules, telecommuting, or possible use of Community Service Leave to prevent employees from incurring a negative leave balance. 

 To view the most recent update, please visit this link.

Winter Break Closure Update

Winter Break Closure Update

As you know, our winter break closure this year will begin on December 24 and the University will re-open on January 5, 2015.  Please remember that the intent is to leverage an extended winter break to reduce our campus fuel consumption, both to reduce organizational expense and to support our commitment to sustainability.  To be successful, we must work to limit on-campus activity during the period to essential operations, to the extent possible.  At the same time, we are committed to minimizing the impact on employees who do not have sufficient vacation or bonus leave to cover the three non-holiday closure days, or those who may prefer to conserve their available leave for other purposes.

When we last communicated regarding the winter break closure, on November 14, it was to inform employees of opportunities to utilize community service leave (see Winter Break Closure at  We continue to encourage this as a way for employees to manage the winter break closure and also support our community. 

The purpose of this communication is to provide guidance on two alternatives to community service leave available to help employees manage the non-holiday closure days -- telecommuting and professional development.


Where productive work that can be performed remotely is available, employees may seek approval of their supervisors to work from home to offset non-holiday closure hours.  To utilize this option:

  • The supervisor and employee must agree on the work to be performed and it must be documented.
  • Work to be completed must be measurable and completion must be verified by the supervisor.
  • Hours spent performing work must be documented by the employee and provided to the supervisor for approval.
  • Any university work materials (hard copy or electronic) that would be removed from campus must be documented with the supervisor and their return must be documented.

For anyone needing assistance accessing university computer systems remotely, online tutorials are available on the Staff Senate website at:  Links to the tutorials are in the notes for the Senate’s September 9 meeting.

Professional Development Opportunities ( is a web-based archive of professional development videos.  It is a service to which Appalachian State University ITS subscribes, offering over 2,900 courses and 128,000 individual videos.  It is an exceptional professional development resource to help employees advance their knowledge and skills in areas ranging from technology and computer software to business, personal and professional skills.  The winter break closure provides employees with an excellent opportunity to engage in some of these learning opportunities, to offset non-holiday closure hours.  To utilize this option:

  • Employees must obtain approval from their supervisors.
  • Employees must work with their supervisors to identify offerings appropriate to their work, professional and personal development goals.
  • Employees and supervisors must agree upon and document offerings to be completed.
  • Completion of offerings must be documented by printing the Certificate of Completion at the end of each video.  If the employee does not have printing capabilities, completion can be documented through ITS system tracking upon return to work after the holiday break.  For this confirmation, please contact Kevin Snook in ITS at:
  • Hours spent engaged in these professional development opportunities must be tracked by employees and submitted to their supervisors for approval. offerings can be accessed at  From that site, click "log in" and choose the "log in through your organization or school" option.  This will redirect you to the ASU Shibboleth sign-in page where you will enter your ASU ID and password.  You will then be directed back to where you can browse and view offerings.  The first time you log in through the site, you may be prompted to enter your organization’s URL.  If you are, enter in the box provided.

Employees who do not have internet access at home may be able to check out an iPad with the application already installed from either the ITS Walk-In Services office in Anne Belk Hall or the Library.  Employees can download videos directly to the iPad so they can be completed later offline.  Available iPads may be checked out on a first-come, first-serve basis.  Please note that the ITS Walk-In Service office will be closed after December 12 due to construction in Anne Belk Hall.

Anyone needing assistance in identifying a targeted selection of offerings is encouraged to contact Emily Wilson in Human Resources at 262-6486. 

Anyone with additional questions about the winter break closure or needing further assistance is encouraged to contact Human Resources at 262-3187.

2015 Annual Enrollment

Annual Enrollment for both the North Carolina State Health Plan and NCFlex will occur from October 1 – 31, 2014. Click Here to Enroll.

For further information, visit our 2015 Annual Enrollment page.

HB 834 - Changes to the Human Resources Act

Please click this link for more information on the Human Resources Act


2013-2015 Salary Parameters

2013 Legislative Salary Action Memo

2013-2015 10% Salary Increase Limit FAQs

2013-2015 Salary Freeze FAQs

2013-2014 Special Leave Granted

The North Carolina General Assembly ratified Senate Bill 402, which grants a one-time additional five days of special vacation leave effective July 1, 2013, to permanent, leave earning employees of the State. A pro-rated portion will be granted to employees who are designated three-quarter time or part-time. The 2013-2014 Special Leave provisions are the same as those identified in the 2012-2013 Special Leave Policy. As a reference, employees and supervisors will find attached a copy of the 2013-2014 Special Leave policy.

Since the additional five days, or a pro-rated portion, were granted effective July 1st, 2013 employees may choose to submit an amended time sheet to account for the Special Leave retroactive to July 1st, 2013. Amended time sheets must be submitted to payroll no later than August 16, 2013. After the amended timesheet date, no further retroactive leave adjustments will be allowed.

As identified in the policy, please keep in mind that Special Leave is to be treated in the same scope as Vacation Leave, in that leave must be requested from the employee and approved by the supervisor with as much advance notice as possible. Supervisors are encouraged to make every effort to allow employees to use this Special Leave prior to June 30, 2014 at which time it will expire.

For further questions please feel free to contact the Office of Human Resources at 262-3186.

Special Leave Policy

Processing July 2013 Personnel Actions (REVISED)

Memo from Suzanne T. Ortega, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and William A. Fleming, Vice President for Human Resources.

Memo from C. Neal Alexander, Jr., State Personnel Director

Processing Personnel Actions with Effective Dates of July 1 or Later

Emergency Loan Fund (ELF) Information

Click on the links below to view ELF information.

Emergency Loan Fund (ELF) Information