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UW Committee Recommends Academic Calendars; Public Comment Accepted

April 10, 2019

A University of Wyoming committee has proposed academic calendars for a three-year period, starting with the 2020-21 school year, and public comment is being sought on the proposals.

Developed with extensive feedback from students, faculty and staff, the recommended calendars call for the fall semester to start on the fourth Monday of August each year, with a four-week winter break and the spring semester starting on the Tuesday after Martin Luther King Jr./Wyoming Equality Day each January. The recommended calendars retain a weeklong spring break in mid-March, with finals week ending no later than May 14.

Other features of the proposed calendars include:

-- A mini-break day in the fall.

-- Two extra break days during Thanksgiving week, making it a full week with no classes.

-- A one-day February break.

-- A total of 73 days of instruction per semester, resulting in an annual increase of six instructional days from the current calendar.

“The extensive input from students, staff and faculty showed overwhelming support for a four-week winter break,” says UW Honors College Dean Donal Skinner, who chaired the calendar committee. “That means the spring semester would start almost a week earlier than it has in recent years, while still keeping the J-term option, including the possibility of running international courses during the break.”

The recommended calendars -- for the 2020-21, 2021-22 and 2022-23 school years -- may be viewed at under “Draft Calendars.”

To submit comments, go here. The deadline for comments is Friday, April 26.

The UW Board of Trustees is scheduled to act on the calendar issue in May.

In addition to Skinner, members of the calendar committee are student Bailee Harris, representing the Associated Students of UW; Staff Senate Chair Renée Ballard; Faculty Senate representative John Willford; Senior Associate Registrar Lane Buchanan; Vice President for Student Affairs Sean Blackburn; Deputy Director of Athletics Matt Whisenant; Valorie Lyman, of Albany County School District 1; Aaron Courtney, representing UW Financial Services; Eric Webb, executive director of Residence Life and Dining Services and the Wyoming Union; Emily Vernon, representing the UW Alumni Association; a Laramie County Community College representative; Shannon Polk, of the President’s Office; Associate Professor of Botany Ellen Currano; Assistant Professor of Veterinary Sciences Berit Bangoura; and College of Law Associate Dean Sam Kalen.

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