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Potsdam Prepared: Fall 2021 Updates

Important Update from Human Resources

January 7, 2021

Dear Faculty & Staff,

Please review the following information carefully.  Should you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me.


The pilot telecommuting programs for CSEA, UUP, PEF and M/C employees in negotiation with the State of New York have been extended through April 2, 2021.  SUNY Potsdam will be approving telecommuting programs through March 12, 2021.  If your telecommuting application has changed since it was initially approved then you should work with your supervisor and submit a new application for approval.  If your current telecommuting application has not changed then you do not need to submit any new documentation at this time.

February Holidays

The following February holiday information does not apply to teaching faculty.

  • February 12, 2021, Lincoln’s Birthday has been designated as a floating holiday. Eligible employees will receive credit for a floating holiday to be used on a date no later than February 11, 2022.
  • February 15, 2021, Washington’s Birthday is a state holiday.

The College has determined that only those services deemed essential will be maintained on state designated holidays. This policy has been put into place in an effort to help facilitate the observance of holidays that have been negotiated in the contract as well as to minimize the costs associated with working on holidays. The following definition can be helpful in further understanding essential services:

Essential Services are services that relate directly to the health, safety and welfare of our campus. Some services may be deemed more essential when the College is in session than when it is not. When the College is not in session, essential services personnel typically include, but are not limited to, the Heating Plant staff, University Police, snow removal personnel, and possibly a small number of Physical Plant staff for operational emergencies. When the College is not in session, but students are residing in the dorms, certain Student Life areas may also be deemed essential such as Residence Life and Student Health. The Library may be considered essential at this time. When the College is in session, essential services personnel typically include the same people listed above as well as Physical Plant staff to lock and unlock buildings. Given the complexities of the College’s integrated and computerized administrative systems and their relationship to the State of New York’s administrative systems, administrative offices are typically not considered to be essential services on State holidays.

COVID-19 Surveillance Testing

As a reminder beginning in mid-January, employees will begin to self-administer their COVID-19 tests.  When you report for your last in-person testing appointment, you will receive a testing kit.  Employees will still receive an email notice from me telling you when you must take your next COVID-19 test.  You should follow the instructions provided and take the test on the required date.

Please remember not to leave your test kits in freezing temperatures (such as in your vehicle)!  The testing solution must remain at room temperature.  If self-administration does not proceed as planned, the campus will revert back to previous testing procedures.

If you have not done so already, please make sure you register with SUNY Upstate Medical for testing.  The online check-in system will continue to be used for our remaining in-person tests as well as the self-administered tests.

Remember, if you are feeling ill or are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, please do not report to campus for any reason—including to take a test or to drop one off.  Contact Human Resources immediately to discuss next steps.

Finally, you will only be contacted if your pool has tested positive.  Please click here to view the latest case details.

Contact Information

It is critical that Human Resources has up-to-date contact information for each employee.  If you have recently changed addresses or phone numbers and have not notified Human Resources please do so immediately.  You can also update your contact information in the SUNY HR self-service portal.  This is especially critical during the health pandemic so the campus can contact trace as needed.


Melissa Proulx
Director of Human Resources
(315) 267-2086