To: Members of the University Community
From: Eric M. Heath, Associate Vice President for Safety & Security; and Michele Rasmussen, Dean of Students in the University
Subject: Inclement Weather Announcement
Date: February 15, 2021
In light of a winter storm warning from the National Weather Service, forecasting snow accumulations in Chicago of five to 10 inches and wind chills near 20 degrees below zero, the President and Provost have canceled all in-person classes and non-essential activities at Chicago locations beginning at 2:30 p.m. today through noon on Tuesday. COVID-19 testing sites will close at 2:30 p.m. today and will re-open at 12 noon tomorrow.
University employees whose presence on campus is not critical are not expected to come to campus; employees who can perform their jobs remotely should do so. Employees should consult with their supervisors about questions specific to their roles and assignments. UChicago Medicine and Biological Sciences Division personnel who perform essential clinical or other functions will be expected to work.
Please plan ahead for the severe weather and take extra precautions. We advise students, faculty, other academic personnel, and staff to avoid travel during the winter storm advisory period and stay inside if possible.
As a residential University, many functions will continue during the closure:
- All residence halls and dining commons will remain open.
- Essential safety personnel, including University police and Facilities employees, will provide key services, though security officers will be removed from outdoor posts if temperatures drop to unsafe levels.
- Transportation services, including shuttle buses, will operate on a regular schedule unless conditions make that impossible or unsafe.
- Closures will include all Library facilities, Harper Memorial Library, the Ratner Athletics Center, the Reynolds Club, Ida Noyes, and eateries in those buildings.
- The University of Chicago Medicine will continue to operate its hospitals and clinics, and will continue to communicate about operations with their staff and faculty.
- UChicago Student Wellness will remain open for virtual care; students should call 773.834.WELL before coming to the Student Wellness Center, even if they already have an appointment. Non-urgent in-person appointments may need to be rescheduled.
- Please check the University website for continuing updates. Many units will issue additional guidance specific to their school, division, or department.
The Laboratory Schools and the University of Chicago Charter Schools also will be closed by 3 p.m. today, and will receive separate emails with specific details of those schools’ closing plans.
For students who are experiencing difficulties as a result of the extreme weather (e.g., inadequate winter clothing, transportation problems), please contact Campus and Student Life at 773.702.5243 during regular business hours or submit a request via https://csl.uchicago.edu/about/contact. For immediate attention, phone the Dean-on-Call at 773.834.HELP (4357).