Vacation Policy for Staff

Mount Holyoke College believes that the purpose of vacation leave is to provide a period of uninterrupted rest and relaxation for the improvement of the health and morale of its employees. For this reason, you are encouraged to take all of the vacation to which you are entitled; however, during peak vacation periods (i.e. during the summer months), employees may need to limit the amount of paid leave used. As either a fiscal year or academic year staff member (or if you work longer than the academic year, but less than the full fiscal year), you are entitled to paid vacation provided:

  • You satisfactorily complete 90 calendar days of continuous service, at which point vacation accrual is retroactive to your date of employment.
  • You work a minimum total of 20 hours per week in one or more departments.

If you are a temporary or part-time staff member who works less than 20 hours per week, you are not eligible for paid vacations.

Vacation dates must be approved in advance by your department head, and you are expected to take times which will not interfere with the work of your office.

Non-academic year employees are entitled to paid vacation only to the extent that vacation time has been accrued at the time the vacation is taken. Any time off beyond the amount of vacation actually accrued may be charged to holiday earned or will be taken without pay.

Where conflicts in the choice of vacation dates occur, preference will be given, whenever possible, to the senior employee in the department.  All staff must report their time used for all types of leave via ISIS. No more than twenty (20) days of accrued vacation (as of June 30 of each year) will be carried forward into the next year. You will forfeit any earned vacation leave and associated pay if you do not comply with these limits. Upon termination, accumulated vacation paywill be paid out.

Accrual of Vacation Time

Non-Exempt Employees

If you are a non-exempt employee, you accrue vacation as follows:

  • At the rate of .83 working days per month of actual service until the third anniversary of your date of employment at which time you will begin accruing at the next higher rate. 
  • At the rate of 1.25 working days for each month of actual service beyond the third anniversary of your date of employment until the fifth anniversary of your date of employment, at which time you will begin accruing at the next higher rate.
  • At the rate of 1.66 working days for each month of actual service beyond the fifth anniversary of your date of employment.

Exempt Employees

If you are an exempt employee, you accrue vacation at the rate of 1.66 working days for each month of actual service.

Part-Time Fiscal Year Employees

If you are a part-time, fiscal year employee (provided you work at least 20 hours per week) you will receive paid vacations on the same basis as full-time employees, except that your vacation accrual will be prorated, based on the number of hours you are normally scheduled to work.

Academic Year and other Less than Full-year Employees (Full or Part-Time)

For academic year employees or those who work longer than an academic year, but less than a full fiscal year, vacation accrual is prorated based on the actual length of your appointment in weeks and the number of weekly scheduled hours.  The average workday for part-time employees will be calculated by dividing the total average hours per week by 5 days.

The operations of many departments with employees who have academic year or other less than a full fiscal year schedules will dictate when those employees take vacation.  For example, departments may have reduced activity or be closed for winter recess in December and into January as well as for spring recess.  During those periods, employees will use vacation.  In those cases, employees may use accrued vacation and vacation that will accrue through the end of their annual appointment year.  Although many employees who have academic year or other less than full fiscal year schedules, will use their entire annual accrual during periods of reduced activity or closings; individuals who do not, may carry a maximum of 15 days of accrued vacation from one fiscal year to another.  

General Rules about Vacation Time

You do not accrue vacation time during periods of leaves of absence without pay.

If you were hired on or before the 15th of any month, or if you leave the College on or after the 15th of any month, you will be given credit, if you fulfill all other eligibility requirements, for a full month's service in computing vacation time. If you were hired after the 15th of any month or leave the College before the 15th of any month, you will not receive credit for that particular month in computing vacation accrual.

Should you leave employment at the College, you will be paid for accrued but unused vacation. Vacation pay will be based on your salary rate at the time you take your vacation, not at the time you earn it.

If, when on vacation, you become ill, you may, with the approval of your department head, use any earned sick leave due you. Extension or rearrangements of your vacation must also be approved by your department head.

When an official College holiday falls within your vacation period, that day will be charged to holiday time and not your vacation accrual.

If you are notified that you will be required to serve on jury duty or as a witness, or are notified of a military service obligation to occur during any portion of your previously scheduled vacation, you can rearrange your vacation dates with approval of your department head so they do not conflict with your military service, jury or witness obligations.

If, while you are on vacation, a death should occur in your family, you will be granted bereavement leave as specified in the College bereavement leave policy, and you can arrange, with the approval of your department head, to take an additional day of vacation (for each day granted as bereavement leave) on dates acceptable to your department head.