Inclement Weather and Emergencies Policy

This policy describes the different situations under which the regular on campus operating schedule may be modified due to inclement weather and the responsibility of the employee in those situations.



  • Essential Personnel
    Staff and Faculty who, due to the nature of the services they provide, are expected to physically report to perform work on campus during inclement weather and other situations in which the normal on-campus schedule is suspended. Such departments or essential employees are designated in advance by the relevant Executive Vice President, Vice President or Academic Dean.
  • Non-Essential Personnel
    Staff and Faculty who are not expected to physically report to work on campus during a time when the regular on-campus operating schedule is modified.    
  • Continuity Personnel
    Faculty and Staff identified by their department’s director, dean, or chair who are recorded in their department’s, division’s, or unit’s Continuity of Operations (COOP) Plan as being required to perform critical functions during activation of the COOP plan.
  • Emergency Personnel
    Faculty and Staff whose job duties affect the security, safety, or physical operation of the University, and are part of the Incident Management Team or Executive Policy Group or required to work in the Emergency Operations Center or Community Assistance Center, even when normal campus operations have been suspended.
  • Delay
    All classes, events, and activities will be cancelled during the time preceding the announced time for delayed opening. Residential facilities will remain open.
  • Cancellation
    Classes, events, and activities will not be held after the announced cancellation time. In extraordinary circumstances, certain events may be held when all other campus activities are cancelled. Notice of those events will be provided to the affected employees and participants. Faculty members have the discretion to complete classes that are in session at the time of a cancellation. Residential facilities will remain open.
  • Closing
    This occurs when extreme conditions require the closing of residential facilities. No classes, events or activities will be scheduled during a closing.



As a residential institution, the University is committed to a year-round operating schedule. It is the intent of the University to remain open and adhere to full operations, including normal class schedules, whenever possible. Commuting students, faculty, and staff should always exercise their best judgment with regard to road conditions and other safety concerns.


If weather conditions or other emergencies make it impossible to maintain an ordinary level of on campus academic activity and business functions, the University may alter the daily schedule. This is expected to be infrequent, and consideration will always be given to maintaining appropriate service levels in departments that provide essential services to the University community.


Supervisors of employees providing essential services should clearly communicate the work attendance requirements during severe weather or other emergency conditions, regardless of media announcements of University closings, cancellations or delays.


Unless otherwise instructed by your manager, as a general rule nonessential personnel are not expected to work remotely during severe weather or other emergency conditions.  However, employees should expect that there may be emergent or continued business that requires some remote work during such disruptions.  In rare instances when disruptions extend beyond one day, direction will be provided, and remote work would likely be necessary.


Communication of University Status Changes

If possible, official announcements of delayed openings or cancellations due to inclement weather or other emergency conditions, will be communicated by 6:00 a.m. or earlier via the communications channels below.


Weather-related closings, cancellations, and delays for the University of Richmond are broadcast by local radio and television stations, including public radio station WCVE (88.9). Faculty, staff and students will receive closing, delay, or cancellation information through their University email. This information will also be posted at and can be found by calling the Emergency Hotline at 804.289.8760. Updates and status changes will be communicated by the same channels.


This policy pertains to faculty and staff whose primary work location is on campus and does not cover employees affected by inclement weather or other emergencies at off-campus locations, which do not impact campus operations.   Employees affected by such emergencies and unable to work should work with their supervisor to assess whether vacation time is appropriate or if alternative arrangements can be made to ensure work continuity.  

View the Inclement Weather and Emergencies Policy.