Unscheduled Closing Procedures


1. Introduction:

In the event of adverse weather, fire, chemical spill, bomb threat or other condition which may threaten the safety of members of the university community, the Sr. Vice President for Administration & Treasurer or the Associate Vice President for Facilities Management may order a closing, delayed opening, or early dismissal of the university, or specific building.

The need to close the university or delay opening will generally be based on one or more of the following factors:

  1. Safety
  2. Security
  3. Weather Conditions
  4. Physical Plant Conditions

Official notification to faculty, staff, students and administrative personnel that the university will close or delay opening will be given pursuant to the procedures which follow:

2. Evacuations and Closing of Campus Building:

In the event there is a need to evacuate one or more buildings, the building fire alarm system will be activated. Public Safety will search the building to assure compliance with the evacuation procedure.

As the situation dictates, appropriate campus departments listed in Table 1 will be contacted and kept apprised of the situation:

Table 1: Department Notification List

University Operator
President’s Office
Provost’s Office
Human Resources
Finance Department
Telecom and Networking
University Advancement
Research and Development
Office of the Vice-President for Academic and Student Services
University Web Services


3. Unscheduled Closing Before the Start of the Business Day:

a. A recommendation to close the university before the start of the business day will be made prior to 6:00AM and for evening classes prior to 2:00PM.

b. The recommendation to close or delay the opening of the university will be made by the Associate Vice President for Facilities Management or, in his absence, his designee, in consultation with the Sr. Vice President for Administration & Treasurer or, in his absence, the President.

c. Director of Public Safety or in his absence the Deputy Chief or Lieutenant will proceed to notify the appropriate radio stations and set in motion the telephone chain.

d. A decision to close the university on succeeding days will be made in the same manner.

e. A decision to close the university cancels all day (but not evening) classes and will apply to all members of the faculty, staff, students and administrative personnel with the following exceptions:

  • Operations and Maintenance Staff of Physical Plant
  • Public Safety & Security
  • Health & Environmental Safety
  • Custodial Services
  • Food Services
  • Student Life
  • Residence Halls
  • Other administrative staff by prior arrangements

f. The decision to cancel evening classes will be made based upon conditions and announced prior to 2:00PM.

g. In the event of an unscheduled closing or delayed opening, the Director of Public Safety or the Associate Vice President for Facilities Management will assign the dispatcher on duty to call appropriate campus departments. Departments in turn will notify individuals of the decision. (See Table 1: Department Notification List)

h. In the event of an unscheduled closing, the Associate Vice President for Facilities Management will notify Telecom, who will program the “Phone Greeting” and Web Services, who will post announcement on the appropriate computing systems, including website and bulletins. In addition the Campus-Wide Notification System will be activated.

i. It is recommended that units/departments maintain current contact information to alert personnel if needed.


4. Unscheduled Closing During Business Hours:

In the event of an unscheduled closing during the business day, refer to Table 1: Department Notification List above for personnel to be notified. Personnel with these departments (not the switchboard) will notify the appropriate individuals reporting to them of the decision to close the university and that specific employees may be released from work. The Campus-Wide Notification System will be activated.


5. Early Dismissal: (university not closed)

This procedure will supplement the regular procedure for unscheduled closing of the university and applies only to an EARLY DISMISSAL due to adverse weather conditions, fire or other conditions. Such early dismissal may be ordered by the Sr. Vice President for Administration & Treasurer or the Associate Vice President for Facilities Management, and it will be stipulated that the university is not closed. When such order is received, the Department of Public Safety will notify the following departments. (See Table 1: Department Notification List)

Be certain to specify that the university is NOT CLOSED and relay the time of early dismissal.

These personnel will notify departments and individuals reporting to them, and inform them when specific employees are to be released from work. The following will be the exceptions from the early dismissal, university NOT CLOSED.

  • Operations and Maintenance Staff of Physical Plant
  • Public Safety & Security
  • Health & Environmental Safety
  • Custodial Services
  • Food Services
  • Student Life
  • Residence Life
  • Other administrative staff by prior arrangements


6. Time Charged:

As noted above, the effective time of a closure will be part of the announcement. Personnel who leave prior to the announced time should be charged for early departure.