Important Message from Chief Human Resources Officer Maria-Judith Rodriguez

June 24, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

We hope this email finds you and those close to you well. We are writing today to share some important staffing updates:

  • The College continues to make progress with the implementation of the requirements included in the state’s four-phase reopening plan and finalizing plans for the fall semester. More information on these plans will be shared in early July. In the meantime, the College is extending the period of continuous income and the exemption from use of leave balances for any COVID-related reason through July 4, 2020, an extension of the current June 30 deadline. The temporary Premium Pay Policy also remains in effect through July 4.
  • The status and protocol for staff who have been working remotely and for those who have been deemed essential and have been working on campus are unchanged. 
  • Beginning July 5, staff who will not be able to perform all or some of their work will need to begin using their accrued leave time for those hours that they are unable to work.
  • Also beginning July 5, staff who are unable to perform all or some of their work remotely or for whom there is no work available on campus will have the opportunity to explore the possibility of performing other work. Supervisors/department chairs will work with staff to evaluate options for remote work, a modified shift or work schedule, and/or a temporary work reassignment.
  • If suitable alternative or supplemental work is not identified, the Office of Human Resources (OHR) will work directly with the staff to explore other options, for example, use of leaves (vacation, floating holidays, etc.); accrual of a negative leave balance, capped to the maximum accrual for vacation and sick time based on years of service; or taking an unpaid leave of absence, if eligible and approved. We have created a chart summarizing and illustrating these options.

We understand that many of you have concerns and may be feeling uncertain about our future state.   We want to provide you with an opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback about the plans. To this end, we have created a set of FAQs, and will hold an OHR Q&A session this Friday, June 26, from 11 AM to noon to answer as many questions as we can, while understanding that fall plans and staffing needs are not yet known. To participate, please join via one of these options:

Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID:
979 8959 0499, Password: 541746

Join By Phone
One tap mobile: +13126266799,,97989590499#

Thank you for your hard work and dedication to the College through what has certainly been a challenging time. Your commitment to Amherst and our mission is greatly appreciated.


Maria-Judith Rodriguez
Chief Human Resources Officer

COVID-19 Resources