Taking time off is important for your overall wellbeing and productivity in both your professional and personal life. You may also find the need to take extended time away from work for health, family, or other reasons. Western Governors University offers a variety of benefits that allow you time to relax, recover, care for family members, honor personal commitments, and more.



Holiday When Observed in 2024
New Year’s Day (Observation) Mon, Jan 1
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Mon, Jan 15
Presidents’ Day Mon, Feb 19
Memorial Day Mon, May 27
Juneteenth Wed, Jun 19
Independence Day Thu, Jul 4
Labor Day Mon, Sep 2
Thanksgiving Day Thu, Nov 28
Day After Thanksgiving Day Fri, Nov 29
Christmas Eve (Observation) Tue, Dec 24
Christmas Day (Observation) Wed, Dec 25

Employees in a position classified as full-time will receive 8 hours for each observed company holiday. You are also entitled to two floating holidays to be used however you choose. Floating holidays renew on your original hire date anniversary and are not eligible for carryover.

Part-time employees will receive holiday pay at a pro-rated amount according to your scheduled weekly hours in Workday. For any questions regarding your scheduled weekly hours, please reach out to your direct leader.


Sick Time

As a Western Governors University employee, you are eligible for sick pay. If your position is classified as full-time, you may accrue up to 48 hours of sick leave per year, up to an overall maximum balance of unused/accrued sick time of 144 hours. If your position is classified as part-time, you may accrue up to 24 hours per year, up to a balance maximum of 72 hours. You will accrue one hour of sick time for every 30 regular hours worked (excluding any overtime hours or paid time off paid). For example, full-time employees earn 2.66 hours per pay period based on a 40-hour work week. A year for the purpose of earning sick time is based on your Western Governors University anniversary date. If you attain the sick time balance maximum, no further accruals will be credited until you use sick time to lower your balance below the maximum.



Regular, full-time employees are eligible to accrue vacation pay on a bi-weekly basis. Part-time employees are not eligible for vacation pay accrual. Vacation pay will not be earned during a continuous leave of absence. WGU encourages employees to use their vacation time during the same year in which it is accrued. However, any unused/accrued vacation hours at the end of an anniversary year may be carried over into the following year, up to the vacation balance maximum reflected in the accrual schedule below. If you attain the vacation balance maximum, future vacation accruals will be forfeited until you use vacation time to lower your balance below the maximum.

Years of Service Days Per Year Hours Accrued Per Pay Period Vacation Balance Maximum
Less than 1 10 3.08 N/A
1 13 4.00 130
2 15 4.62 150
3 18 5.54 180
4 or more 20 6.15 200

Bereavement Time

Bereavement time of up to five days per incident is provided in cases of death in the employee's immediate family. For certain extenuating circumstances, additional paid bereavement time may be permitted with approval from your leader and People & Talent. Time away exceeding a total of 10 days due to bereavement may require a leave of absence. For details on WGU’s expanded bereavement policy, please reference the Employee Handbook that is available in the WGU People Center.

For more information and resources, or to contact the P&T Leave & Disability Specialists Team, please visit the Leaves & Disability section of the WGU People Center. Any questions about leaves or disability at WGU should be directed to the P&T Leave & Disability Specialists Team.



Life happens. And WGU is here to support you when you need a leave of absence (LOA) that goes beyond occasional use of available sick or vacation time.
You may need to take a LOA for the birth of your child, military leave, furthering your education, attending to urgent personal business, or medical needs for you or an eligible family member. The maximum amount of unpaid time off will include any time you receive under the Family Medical Leave Act.

For current WGU employees, detailed information on our LOA policies can be found in the Employee Handbook located in the WGU People Center.

Paid Parental Leave

Becoming a parent is an exciting step for families, and Western Governors University recognizes the importance of parent-child bonding. While nothing can quite prepare you for those first weeks of parenthood, Western Governors University will provide you with up to 12 weeks of Paid Parental Leave (PPL) following the birth of a child or the placement of a child in connection with adoption, surrogacy, or foster care.


  • Up to a maximum of 12 weeks of leave for bonding purposes
  • For employees who are the birthing parent, PPL will begin after any pregnancy leave under WGU's Short Term Disability plan
  • Paid at 100% of the employee's regular base pay - may be reduced by any federal, state, or local bonding/parental leave benefits the employee may also receive
  • Must be used within the 12-month period following birth or placement
  • Cannot be used intermittently but may be used in no more than two continuous blocks of leave
  • If available, PPL will run concurrently with FMLA entitlement


Employees must meet all the following criteria, as of the leave start date:

  • Have been employed for at least 12 months and worked at least 1,250 hours during the 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the leave start date
  • Employed in a regular position classified to work 30 or more hours weekly (Note: Positions classified less than 30 hours weekly or positions classified as temporary/intern are ineligible.) 
  • Have given birth to a child
  • Have a spouse or partner who has given birth to a child, including via surrogacy
  • Have adopted a child for placement or been the recipient of a foster child placement and such child is age 17 or younger

Military Leave

To support your service to our country, you may be eligible for LOA consistent with the requirements of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA). For more resources or to connect with a Leave & Disability Specialist, visit the Leaves of Absence page in the WGU People Center.

With proper documentation, you may be eligible for military differential pay when you return WGU from your deployment or service for certain qualifying military leaves. For more information and resources, or to contact the P&T Leave & Disability Specialists Team, please visit the Leaves & Disability section of the WGU People Center.

Requesting a LOA or Workplace Accommodation

AbsenceTracker is an easy-to-access, intuitive technology platform that empowers employees and leaders to efficiently manage their leave of absence (LOA) or workplace accommodation.

To request a leave or workplace accommodation, log in to your AbsenceTracker portal and submit your request to the P&T Leave & Disability Specialists Team. For general information, assistance with AbsenceTracker, or to contact the P&T Leave & Disability Specialists Team, please visit the WGU People Center.