Mission Leave Policy

In light of our mission of Learning, Leadership and Service, Rockhurst University encourages its faculty and employees to live out service to others.  The purpose of the Mission Leave Policy is to allow faculty and employees to voluntarily participate, with pay, in University sponsored spiritual retreats or in approved mission related or service related activities that occur during regularly scheduled work hours.  To the extent employees voluntarily choose to participate in similar activities outside of regularly scheduled working hours, such time will not be compensated.  This policy is designed to support the objectives of increasing voluntary service and encouraging reflection as an integral part of our University’s mission.

In order to be eligible for mission leave with pay, a faculty member or employee must work in a regular full-time or regular part-time position equivalent to at least half time.

The University recognizes the following types of voluntary activities under this leave policy:

1. University sponsored or endorsed spiritual retreats or Mission and Ministry Programs – includes any retreat sponsored, endorsed or conducted by the Office of Mission and Ministry or Campus Ministry.

2. Mission or service related activities – includes community service in connection with a legally sanctioned non-profit organization that engages in activities that are consistent with the University’s mission.

3. Qualified mission or community service related activities must involve acts of service that help others in an immediate personal way and that make a tangible difference in the daily struggle for justice, dignity, or human rights, or involve acts of service that provide humanitarian aid or relief in situations of community crises or human tragedy, or are directly related to service to the economically poor, the disabled, the disadvantaged, or the socially oppressed members of society; or involve work with formulation of social policy to transform conditions of social oppression.

4. Activities that may qualify under this category of leave include but are not limited to: delivering meals for Meals on Wheels, building a house for Habitat for Humanity, volunteering to tutor after school, etc.

5. Example of activities that would be excluded include: attending child’s athletic events, political activity, attending fund raising events.

The Office of Mission and Ministry is responsible for determining whether the mission related service activity qualifies under this policy.  The department chair or supervisor is responsible for approving the time off.  The chair or supervisor has the right not to grant time off if granting such time creates staffing problems.

Full-time faculty members or employees are eligible for a maximum of three working days (or equivalent working hours) per calendar year.  If part-time, the faculty member or employee will be given leave on a pro-rated basis and in accordance with her/his part time status.  Extended periods of paid leave may be granted, for activity during regular working hours, for specific University sponsored retreats or activities on a case-by-case basis. The Office of Mission and Ministry must be consulted and approve any exceptions to this policy.

Mission Leave requires written approval from the chair or supervisor and the Office of Mission and Ministry:

1. University Mission Leave must be approved by the chair or supervisor during the calendar year, with consideration given to the wishes of the faculty member or employee, as well as to the particular need of the department.

2. Requests for Mission Leave must be made in writing to the chair or supervisor.  Their positive recommendation moves the request to the Office of Mission and Ministry for the final approval.

3. Mission Leave is not paid out to terminating employees who do not use their entire eligible amount.

4. Mission Leave cannot be carried over from one year to the next.