Fall 2022 Weather Closure Update

by Green & Gold News  |   

Dear UAA Community,
As winter approaches and road conditions start to decline, I would like to clarify our policies surrounding inclement weather and campus closures. Our goal is to minimize the amount of educational disruption when winter weather makes travel to and from campus unsafe. We will use the skills and flexibilities learned during the pandemic to provide educational continuity through remote teaching, learning and working methods.

Please take the time to review these policies as some guidelines may differ as the ways we teach, learn and work have changed in recent years. 

How do we decide whether to close campus for inclement weather?

The Incident Management Team (IMT) assesses weather situations and makes a recommendation to the chancellor about campus closures based on the following considerations: 
  • Safety conditions of roads on and around campus
  • Safety conditions of roads in the Anchorage Bowl
  • Alaska State Troopers and Anchorage Police Department accident reports/warnings
  • NOAA weather reports and predicted conditions
  • Safety of the campus communities at each location

IMT will always attempt to announce initial weather closures by 6 a.m. Alerts will be posted on social media, the UAA website and sent via email. While we do monitor the activity of local school districts and community partners, a closure by another organization, including the Anchorage School District, does not determine whether campus will close.  

Guidance for faculty and students who have courses on the day of a closure:

When campus is closed for inclement weather, courses that are already online or hybrid should continue in an online format. Courses that are usually held in person but can pivot to an online format for that day should do so. I encourage faculty to have proactive conversations with students about how classes will shift online in the event of a closure due to a weather emergency.

Courses that are usually held in person and cannot be offered in an online format will have a make-up day near the end of the semester. The date of the make-up day would be determined and announced at a later date. Some students may be unable to participate in temporary online learning; specific accomodation for these cases should be coordinated directly with professors.

Guidance for employees who CAN work remotely:

Remote work can and should continue if adverse weather conditions permit. This means that employees who have remote work agreements in place, as well as those who can effectively pivot to working remotely, should do so even on closuredays whenever possible. Employees should discuss specific conditions or circumstances which prevent remote work with their primary supervisor. 

Guidance for employees who CANNOT work remotely: 

Administrative leave use during an inclement weather closure is intended for employees who travel to and from a work location and cannot conduct their work remotely. With supervisor approval, use earnings code “466 - Personal Safety Administrative Leave” on your timesheet. Temporary and student employees are not eligible for weather-related administrative leave. 

Guidance for inclement weather WITHOUT campus closure:

Safety and well-being are our primary concerns. While snowy and/or icy roads do not always warrant a campus closure, we understand that adverse road conditions during the winter months can make it difficult for some employees and students to travel to campus. Please note that we make recommendations based on the Anchorage area. Conditions may vary for those living in surrounding communities. 

Please use your best judgment and do not put your safety at risk when it comes to traveling to campus in dangerous weather conditions. Employees should communicate with supervisors and students should communicate with professors if weather conditions prevent you from safely traveling to campus. Every attempt should be made to work or learn remotely to the extent available. 

Weather closure notifications: 

For those who want to receive weather closure notifications via text, you must opt in through our alert system. Please visit uaalert.alaska.edu and select “Check/Update Your Information” to confirm that your UA Alerts profile is up to date and you have opted in to receive text alerts. 

With your safety in mind, we have also adopted the Rave Guardian safety app, which works in partnership with the safety messages you receive via other methods. This is a free personal safety app that provides emergency information and support services straight to your phone. Simply search “Rave Guardian” in the app store on your mobile device and select the UAA site while registering. Please note the app will automatically select the UA System Office. 

Thank you, 

Ryan Buchholdt
Vice Chancellor for Administrative Services
Creative Commons License "Fall 2022 Weather Closure Update" is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
November Archive