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January 6, 2022

Happy New Year, and I hope that all of you got some time over the break to relax and be with loved ones.

As we prepare for the start of classes next week, I want to make sure that you know how much we value you as a manager. Leading others can be difficult in the best of times, and you’ve been called on to do it during a pandemic that’s lasted for 21 months. I couldn’t be more proud of the many supervisors at UCF who have led their teams with empathy and kindness.

Your compassionate leadership will be essential for UCF’s success again this spring. We are starting the semester as our region and nation experience a surge of COVID-19 cases due to the highly transmissible Omicron variant. Staffing levels in your unit may be impacted by employees who contract COVID-19 and miss work due to illness or quarantine. It is important that we encourage employees who feel sick or have symptoms to stay home to help reduce the spread of the virus.

I ask that you continue to show compassion and flexibility when dealing with those you manage. Employees who are sick should not come to work; returning prematurely could expose others. We trust our supervisors with the authority to approve short-term absences or remote work.

Employees who test positive must call the UCF COVID Line at 407-823-2509, which is available between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. seven days a week. Before returning to work on campus, they must submit to Human Resources a UCF COVID Medical Release for Return to Campus form signed by their health care provider. If you have an employee with concerns about available leave time, you can remind them that they may be eligible for Knights Care Leave Share. More information can be found here.

As a manager, you can play a big role in reducing the spread of the virus and conveying care and support for your team members. Encouraging your employees to wear a well-fitting mask that fully covers the nose and mouth when around others can prevent co-workers from being exposed.
If you haven’t done so already, I also encourage you to plan for how your office would continue to serve our students, faculty and staff if you have multiple employees absent at the same time.

Thank you for your dedication during one of the most difficult times to be a supervisor or manager. I know managing workers during a pandemic isn’t easy and requires more effort. I appreciate the care, compassion and support you offer our employees.

If you have questions or need assistance, I encourage you to speak with your supervisor or contact

Maureen Binder
Associate Vice President
Chief Human Resources Officer