Notes from a colleague Buckeye – Office of the President


The following post was shared with Ohio State Faculty and Staff on Friday December 10, 2021. Click here to view the message sent to students on December 8.

Dear colleagues,

As the semester draws to a close and we look forward to the holidays, I want to thank you for your dedication and excellence this semester and beyond. The past two years have brought historic challenges to our university and, as members of our incredible faculty and staff, you have demonstrated time and time again with remarkable commitment and resilience. Many of you have set aside your personal time and made sacrifices to support our missions of teaching, learning, research and service.

We need now – more than ever – to focus on the health, safety and well-being of the people who work every day to support our students – and each other.

With that in mind, I am pleased to share that the university will be closed from December 23-29 and December 31. The extra days of December 27, 28 and 29 are meant to extend the holiday long weekend and provide you with additional opportunities. to rest, recharge and spend time with your family, friends and loved ones. Employees who wish to request a vacation day on December 30 may also consider this option.

As with regular university vacations, essential services, as determined by unit and college management, will continue during this period. Employees called to work during the closure will be paid. Additionally, non-exempt employees will be eligible to earn compensatory time and exempt employees will be eligible for flexible hours.

Our deep and sincere gratitude goes to the employees who provide these services – on statutory holidays and every other day of the year as well. For more information on implementation and eligibility, please visit the Office of Human Resources website.

Thank you, Buckeyes, and I hope you can use this time to focus more on your health and well-being.


As you’ve probably heard me say this semester, fully achieving greatness requires a strategic focus on five areas of excellence: academics; knowledge enterprise; talent and culture; a service; and operational. I can say without exaggeration that Ohio State is home to the largest faculty and staff of any higher education institution, and I’m proud to be here with you all.

We have laid out a bold agenda for the state of Ohio.

During my inauguration, I was delighted to announce the details of the Scarlet & Gray Advantage program, our plan to deliver a debt-free bachelor’s degree within a decade. Ohio State will raise $ 800 million, including $ 500 million in endowments. We also have a $ 50 million game pool thanks to our generous Buckeye family. This is another example of the State of Ohio serving as a leader among our peers across the country.

I am also excited about our faculty recruitment efforts and the RAISE initiative – short for Race, Inclusion and Social Equity. Through this program, we will add to our already superb scholarship and research focused on racial disparities by recruiting new faculty who will consider inequalities in areas such as healthcare, STEM education, social justice and public safety, the environment, leadership and economic resources.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has stepped up its recommendation for booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, and the university is urging all people aged 18 and over to get the vaccine. Vaccine appointments are scheduled through MyChart. Learn more on the Get vaccinated page.

If you have recently returned from international locations or have traveled to the United States through major international travel hubs, I urge you to take the test as soon as possible. You are also encouraged to test before you travel for winter vacation and upon your return to campus. Testing can give people peace of mind and help keep others healthy.

As a reminder, asymptomatic surveillance testing is available to all students, staff, and faculty at our on-campus testing sites, including Monday through Friday at Jesse Owens North on the Columbus campus. For regional locations, dates and times, and information on how to plan through MyChart, visit the Safe and Healthy Buckeyes website.

Celebrate Success

We have a lot to celebrate, including the many honors awarded to the Buckeyes this semester, the return to spectacle sports and strong support for our major initiatives.

  • Wexner Medical Center became the first in the country to use a new pulmonary neuromodulation system. Dr Sitaramesh Emani, Director of Clinical Heart Failure Research and Associate Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine, used the technology to treat patients hospitalized for acute decompensated heart failure with Dr Rami Kahwash, Director of Cardiac and Vascular Research of Ohio State and Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine.
  • Congratulations to Zia Ahmed, Senior Director of Food Services, for winning Theodore W. Minah Distinguished Service Award, which is the highest honor bestowed by the National Association of College & University Food Services to an individual in recognition of their contribution exceptional and durable in food service. industry. Thank you for your commitment to diversity and your exceptional leadership.
  • Amna Akbar, professor of law at Moritz College of Law and co-author of “Race, Racism and American Law, 7th Ed.”, Is the recipient of the Freedom Scholars Awards for 2021. The Freedom Scholars conduct research in critical areas including abolitionist, black, feminist, queer, radical and anti-colonialist studies. The annual award, created in 2020, counteracts limited financial resources and research constraints frequently encountered by researchers whose work supports social movements. The cohort of fellows will each receive $ 250,000 in unrestricted funds, spread over two years, to be used as they see fit.

The energy, creativity and dedication of our staff and faculty are a gift to our university.

Come on the Buckeyes!


Kristina M. Johnson, PhD

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