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Use this calendar as a resource for education and accommodation as you plan classroom, academic and co-curricular events.

When scheduling tests, deadlines, events or activities, it is vital that we reasonably accommodate all faculty, staff and students for observation of their religious holidays. It is against federal law to discriminate on the basis of religious or spiritual beliefs. At Carolina, ensuring that everyone feels welcome and has a sense of belonging is a priority.

Practice saying the customary greeting (pronunciations provided) to say to your colleagues, students and faculty – it will go a long way to making them feel welcomed and acknowledged!

For questions about this calendar, please contact the University Office for Diversity and Inclusion at diversity@unc.edu or 919-843-6086.

About the Holy Days Observances Calendar

  1. Some religious communities limit or avoid their use of technology during holy days, which also include the Sabbath (celebrated by Jews from Friday night through Saturday night). Such technology includes but is not limited to the use of virtual learning platforms.
  2. Bahá’í, Judaic and Islamic observances begin at sundown and end at sundown on the dates listed.
  3. “Kosher restrictions apply” refers to the dietary restrictions of Jewish Law that include avoidance of port, shellfish and mixing dairy with meat.
  4. “Halal restrictions apply” refers to the dietary restrictions of Islamic Law. These include pork and alcohol.
  5. Although the dates listed are based on the Gregorian calendar, many cultures and religions are lunar or solar-based
  6. Not all holy days in every religious and spiritual tradition are included in this calendar and there may be some variances to dates due to regional differences.

2021-2022 Academic Year

DATE OBSERVANCE RECOMMENDED ACCOMMODATION CUSTOMARY GREETING
Jul. 19 – 20 Eid al Adha (Islam)
Signifies the final day of Ramadan and the end of the fasting period. Common traditions include the exchange of fits, praying and feasting with friends and family.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first day. Wishing you love, joy and peace,” or “Eid Ul Adha Mubarak!” (AH-EED ahl odd-HA MOO-bah-ROK),”
Sept. 6 – 8 Rosh Hashanah (Jewish)
Literally, the “head of the year,” or Jewish New Year, celebrated with remembrance and judgment and auguring in the 10 days of reflection and atonement leading up to Yom Kippur. Common traditions include large meals and prayer.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Wishing you a sweet year,” “Happy new year,” “Shanah Tovah,” (SHAH-NAH TOW-vah), or Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Sept. 15 – 16 Yom Kippur (Jewish)
Considered the holiest of days for Jews, dedication to reparation and abstinence. Common traditions include a day of fasting, praying and the lighting of a Yahrzeit memorial candle in memory of loved ones.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on this date or the following day due to students, faculty and staff fasting. “Have an easy fast,” or “Gmar chatima tova” (GMAR HA-tee-mah TOW-vah)
Sept. 20 – 27 Sukkot/Succot (Jewish)
This week-long festival celebrates and gives thanks for the Fall harvest. Common traditions include decorating the Sukkah, an outdoor “room” with a view of the sky.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first two days. “Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Sept. 27 – 29 Shemini Atzeret/Simchat Torah (Jewish)
Shemini Atzeret features the prayer for rain and the Yizkor prayer for the dead while Simchat Torah celebrates the Torah with marching, dancing and reading of the Torah.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach), “gut yontiff”
Oct. 7 – 15 Navratri(Hindu) Generally, this holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, provide accommodations if requested. “Happy Navratri to you and your family”
Nov. 4 Diwali/Deepavali (Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist)
Known as the “Festival of Lights,” it is celebrated by various Southern Asian religions. Participants celebrate the triumph of good over evil (or lightness over darkness). Common traditions include the lighting of oil lamps, setting off fireworks and praying.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Happy Diwali,” or “Wishing you a Diwali that brings happiness, prosperity and joy”
Nov. 28 – Dec. 6 Chanukah/Hanukkah (Jewish)
Known also as the “Festival of Lights,” this eight-day observance celebrates the Jews’ historic struggle for religious freedom and the right to be different, commemorating the historic victory of the Maccabees against the Syrian-Greeks. Common traditions include gift-giving, eating sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts) and latkes (potato pancakes), singing and the nightly lighting of the menorah.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. “Happy Chanukah” (KHA-noo-KAH),  Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach) or “Hanukkah Sameach”
Dec. 25 Christmas Day (Christian)
Honoring the birth of Jesus and his self-sacrifice. Common traditions include gift-giving, praying in church, decorating Christmas trees and visiting family.
Accommodations are generally not required since this is a national holy day in the U.S. and the University is closed. “Merry Christmas”
Jan. 9 Gurpurab (Sikh)
Commemorating the birthday of Guru Gobind Singh Sahib, the tenth Sikh Guru, known as the Father of Khalsa. Common traditions include reading religious texts, praying, singing and eating large festive meals.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested  “Happy Gurpurab” (goor-POOR-ob)
Jan. 13 Vaikunta Ekadasi (Hindu)
Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, it is believed that on this day, the gate to heaven opens. Common traditions include fasting, worshipping, meditating and singing.
Provide vegan food accommodations. “Happy Vaikunta Ekadashi” (VY-koon-tah ah-kah-DAH-shee)
Mar. 1 Maha Shivaratri (Hindu)
Honoring Shiva, one of the Hindu deities. Common traditions include fasting, meditating, singing and all-night worshipping.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities due to students, faculty and staff fasting. “Happy Maha Shivratri” (mah-HA shiv-RAH-tree)
Mar. 2 Ash Wednesday (Christian)
Signifying the beginning of Lent, a 40-day period leading up to Easter, during which many Christians give up some of their common pleasures. Common traditions include wearing a cross of ashes on one’s forehead and attending church service.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities due to many participants fasting.
Mar. 4 Ramakrishna (Hindu)
Honoring the birth of Ramakrishna, a Hindu mystic and saint.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested
Mar. 7 Clean Monday (Eastern Orthodox)
Signifying the first day of Great Lent, the name refers to the leaving behind of sinful attitudes and non-fasting foods. The week following this holy day is often referred to as “Clean Week” and common practices include going to confession and consumption of shellfish and other fasting foods.
Provide vegan food accommodations. “Happy Purim” (PUH-rim) or Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Mar. 16 – 17 Purim (Jewish)
Commemorating Esther saving the Jews that were living in Persia. Common traditions include reading the Book of Esther, dressing in costumes, holding carnivals and eating hamentaschen (triangular, filled pastries).
Provide Kosher food accommodations. This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Mar. 21 – 22 Norouz/Norooz/Naw-Ruz (Bahá’í)
The Bahá’í New Year, honoring spring and the new life that comes with it. Common traditions include praying, dancing and eating large meals.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Happy Norooz” (NO-rooz) or “Happy Persian New Year”
Apr. 2 – May 1 Ramadan/Ramazan (Islam)
Focusing on faith, this holy observance celebrates the Quran being revealed for the first time during this month on the night of Laylat al Qadr. Common traditions include fasting during daylight hours, eating the iftar meal each night after reading the Quran, refraining from any bad habits and attending night prayers at Mosques.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling important deadlines or activities due to students, faculty and staff fasting during daylight hours. “Ramadan Mubarak” (MOO-bah-ROK) or “Happy Ramadan”
Apr. 14 Baisakhi/Birthday of the Khalsa (Sikh)
Celebrating the New Year and founding of Sikhism in 1699. Common traditions include dance, music, parades and the chanting of scripture.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested “Happy Baisakhi” (BAY-ZAK-ee)
Apr. 15 Good Friday (Christian)
Commemorating the execution of Jesus, this holy day occurs the Friday before Easter. Common traditions include attending church service, praying and fasting.
Provide food accommodations (meat is prohibited for some). Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Have a blessed Good Friday”
Apr. 15 – 23 Passover/Pesach (Jewish)
Honoring the emancipation of the Jewish slaves from ancient Egypt and the delivering of the subsequent delivering of the 10 Commandments from God. Common traditions include the ritual seder meal, reading from the Haggadah, family gatherings and lighting of the yahrzeit memorial candle.
Provide Kosher and Kosher-for-Passover (non-leavened) food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first or last two days. “Happy Passover,” “Happy Pesach” {PAY-sockh) orChag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Apr. 17 Easter (Christian)
Recognizing Jesus’ resurrection from death. Common traditions include gifting others with colorful eggs and candy (sometimes chocolate-shaped bunnies) and gathering with family for a large meal.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Happy Easter”
Apr. 21 – May 2 Ridván (Bahá’í)
Commemorating when Bahá’u’lláh proclaimed his mission as God’s messenger. Common traditions include reading excerpts recounting Bahá’u’lláh’s stay in the Garden of Ridván. On the first day, elections for the democratically elected bodies, or spiritual assemblies, that help govern the Bahá’í community occur.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first, ninth or last day as these are held as non-working days. “Happy Ridvan” (REZ-von)
Apr. 24 Pascha (Eastern Orthodox)
Recognizes Jesus’ resurrection from death. Twelve weeks of preparation precede this holy day. Celebrated with a collection of services combined as one.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities.
Apr. 27 – 28 Yom HaShoah (Jewish)
Held to remember the lives lost in the Holocaust and the many brave activists who fought against it. Common traditions include memorial ceremonies during which names of the dead are read aloud and the reciting of the Kaddish (prayer for the dead).
Provide Kosher food accommodations “Never forget,” Never again.”
Apr. 29 Laylat Al Qadr (Islam)
Commemorating the Quran first being revealed to Muhammed, this holy day is traditionally celebrated on the 27th day of Ramadan. Common traditions include praying late into the evening.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities due to students, faculty and staff praying late into the evening.
May 2 – 3 Eid Al-Fitr (Islam)
Signifying the last day of Ramadan and the end of the fasting period. Common traditions include exchanging gifts, praying, and feasting with friends and family.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. Employees participating often request this day off. “Eid Mubarak” (Ah-EED MOO-bah-rock)
Jun. 4 – 6 Shavuot (Jewish)
Commemorating the giving of the Torah from God to the nation of Israel on top of Mount Sinai. Common traditions include studying the Torah, devotional programs, the lighting of the Yahrzeit memorial candle and reciting Yizkor, the prayer for the dead.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on either day. “Happy Shavuot,”Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach) or “Chag Shavuot Sameach” (Khahg SHAH-voo-OATE sa-MAY-ach)
Jun. 16 Martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev Sahib (Sikh)
Commemorating Guru Arjan Dev Sahib becoming the first martyr. Common traditions include praying, singing hymns, and attending Sikhism-based lectures.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested.
Jun. 28 – 29 Eid al Adha (Islam)
Festival held in remembrance of Ibrahim sacrificing his son Ishmael per Allah’s commands. Common traditions include gift-giving, prayer and occasionally the slaughtering of sheep with a portion being given to the less fortunate.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first day. Wishing you a joyous Eid al Adha” or “Eid al Adha Mubarak” (Ah-EED AHL ah-TAH MOO-bah-rock)

2022-2023 Academic Year

DATE OBSERVANCE RECOMMENDED ACCOMMODATION CUSTOMARY GREETING
Jul. 9 – 13 Eid al Adha (Islam)
Signifies the final day of Ramadan and the end of the fasting period. Common traditions include the exchange of fits, praying and feasting with friends and family.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first day. Wishing you love, joy and peace,” or “Eid Ul Adha Mubarak!” (AH-EED ahl odd-HA MOO-bah-ROK),”
Sept. 25 – 27 Rosh Hashanah (Jewish)
Literally, the “head of the year,” or Jewish New Year, celebrated with remembrance and judgment and auguring in the 10 days of reflection and atonement leading up to Yom Kippur. Common traditions include large meals and prayer.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Wishing you a sweet year,” “Happy new year,” “Shanah Tovah,” (SHAH-NAH TOW-vah), or Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Sept. 26 – Oct. 5 Navratri (Hindu) Generally, this holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, provide accommodations if requested. “Happy Navratri to you and your family”
Oct. 4 – 5 Yom Kippur (Jewish)
Considered the holiest of days for Jews, dedication to reparation and abstinence. Common traditions include a day of fasting, praying and the lighting of a Yahrzeit memorial candle in memory of loved ones.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on this date or the following day due to students, faculty and staff fasting. “Have an easy fast,” or “Gmar chatima tova” (GMAR HA-tee-mah TOW-vah)
Oct. 9 – 16 Sukkot/Succot (Jewish)
This week-long festival celebrates and gives thanks for the Fall harvest. Common traditions include decorating the Sukkah, an outdoor “room” with a view of the sky.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first two days. Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Oct. 16 – 18 Shemini Atzeret/Simchat Torah (Jewish)
Shemini Atzeret features the prayer for rain and the Yizkor prayer for the dead while Simchat Torah celebrates the Torah with marching, dancing and reading of the Torah.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first two days. “Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach), “gut yontiff”
Oct. 24 Diwali/Deepavali (Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist)
Known as the “Festival of Lights,” it is celebrated by various Southern Asian religions. Participants celebrate the triumph of good over evil (or lightness over darkness). Common traditions include the lighting of oil lamps, setting off fireworks and praying.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Happy Diwali,” or “Wishing you a Diwali that brings happiness, prosperity and joy”
Dec. 18 – 26 Chanukah/Hanukkah (Jewish)
Known also as the “Festival of Lights,” this eight-day observance celebrates the Jews’ historic struggle for religious freedom and the right to be different, commemorating the historic victory of the Maccabees against the Syrian-Greeks. Common traditions include gift-giving, eating sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts) and latkes (potato pancakes), singing and the nightly lighting of the menorah.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. “Happy Chanukah” (KHA-noo-KAH),  Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach) or “Hanukkah Sameach”
Dec. 25 Christmas Day (Christian)
Honoring the birth of Jesus and his self-sacrifice. Common traditions include gift-giving, praying in church, decorating Christmas trees and visiting family.
Accommodations are generally not required since this is a national holy day in the U.S. and the University is closed. “Merry Christmas”
Jan. 2 Vaikunta Ekadasi (Hindu)
Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, it is believed that on this day, the gate to heaven opens. Common traditions include fasting, worshipping, meditating and singing.
Provide vegan food accommodations. “Happy Vaikunta Ekadashi” (VY-koon-tah ah-kah-DAH-shee)
Jan. 5 Gurpurab (Sikh)
Commemorating the birthday of Guru Gobind Singh Sahib, the tenth Sikh Guru, known as the Father of Khalsa. Common traditions include reading religious texts, praying, singing and eating large festive meals.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested  “Happy Gurpurab” (goor-POOR-ob)
Feb. 18 Maha Shivaratri (Hindu)
Honoring Shiva, one of the Hindu deities. Common traditions include fasting, meditating, singing and all-night worshipping.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities due to students, faculty and staff fasting. “Happy Maha Shivratri” (mah-HA shiv-RAH-tree)
Feb. 20 – 22 Ramakrishna (Hindu)
Honoring the birth of Ramakrishna, a Hindu mystic and saint.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested
Feb. 22 Ash Wednesday (Christian)
Signifying the beginning of Lent, a 40-day period leading up to Easter, during which many Christians give up some of their common pleasures. Common traditions include wearing a cross of ashes on one’s forehead and attending church service.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities due to many participants fasting.
Feb. 27 Clean Monday (Eastern Orthodox)
Signifying the first day of Great Lent, the name refers to the leaving behind of sinful attitudes and non-fasting foods. The week following this holy day is often referred to as “Clean Week” and common practices include going to confession and consumption of shellfish and other fasting foods.
Provide vegan food accommodations. “Happy Purim” (PUH-rim) or Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Mar. 6 – 7 Purim (Jewish)
Commemorating Esther saving the Jews that were living in Persia. Common traditions include reading the Book of Esther, dressing in costumes, holding carnivals and eating hamentaschen (triangular, filled pastries).
Provide Kosher food accommodations. This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Mar. 21 – 22 Norouz/Norooz/Naw-Ruz (Bahá’í)
The Bahá’í New Year, honoring spring and the new life that comes with it. Common traditions include praying, dancing and eating large meals.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Happy Norooz” (NO-rooz) or “Happy Persian New Year”
Mar. 2 – Apr. 21 Ramadan/Ramazan (Islam)
Focusing on faith, this holy observance celebrates the Quran being revealed for the first time during this month on the night of Laylat al Qadr. Common traditions include fasting during daylight hours, eating the iftar meal each night after reading the Quran, refraining from any bad habits and attending night prayers at Mosques.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling important deadlines or activities due to students, faculty and staff fasting during daylight hours. “Ramadan Mubarak” (MOO-bah-ROK) or “Happy Ramadan”
Apr. 5 – 13 Passover/Pesach (Jewish)
Honoring the emancipation of the Jewish slaves from ancient Egypt and the delivering of the subsequent delivering of the 10 Commandments from God. Common traditions include the ritual seder meal, reading from the Haggadah, family gatherings and lighting of the yahrzeit memorial candle.
Provide Kosher and Kosher-for-Passover (non-leavened) food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first or last two days. “Happy Passover,” “Happy Pesach” {PAY-sockh) orChag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Apr. 7 Good Friday (Christian)
Commemorating the execution of Jesus, this holy day occurs the Friday before Easter. Common traditions include attending church service, praying and fasting.
Provide food accommodations (meat is prohibited for some). Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Have a blessed Good Friday”
Apr. 9 Easter (Christian)
Recognizing Jesus’ resurrection from death. Common traditions include gifting others with colorful eggs and candy (sometimes chocolate-shaped bunnies) and gathering with family for a large meal.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Happy Easter”
Apr. 14 Baisakhi/Birthday of the Khalsa (Sikh)
Celebrating the New Year and founding of Sikhism in 1699. Common traditions include dance, music, parades and the chanting of scripture.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested “Happy Baisakhi” (BAY-ZAK-ee)
Apr. 16 Pascha (Eastern Orthodox)
Recognizes Jesus’ resurrection from death. Twelve weeks of preparation precede this holy day. Celebrated with a collection of services combined as one.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities.
Apr. 17 – 18 Yom HaShoah (Jewish)
Held to remember the lives lost in the Holocaust and the many brave activists who fought against it. Common traditions include memorial ceremonies during which names of the dead are read aloud and the reciting of the Kaddish (prayer for the dead).
Provide Kosher food accommodations “Never forget,” Never again.”
Apr. 18 Laylat Al Qadr (Islam)
Commemorating the Quran first being revealed to Muhammed, this holy day is traditionally celebrated on the 27th day of Ramadan. Common traditions include praying late into the evening.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities due to students, faculty and staff praying late into the evening.
Apr. 21 – May 2 Ridván (Bahá’í)
Commemorating when Bahá’u’lláh proclaimed his mission as God’s messenger. Common traditions include reading excerpts recounting Bahá’u’lláh’s stay in the Garden of Ridván. On the first day, elections for the democratically elected bodies, or spiritual assemblies, that help govern the Bahá’í community occur.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first, ninth or last day as these are held as non-working days. “Happy Ridvan” (REZ-von)
Apr. 22 Eid Al-Fitr (Islam)
Signifying the last day of Ramadan and the end of the fasting period. Common traditions include exchanging gifts, praying, and feasting with friends and family.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. Employees participating often request this day off. “Eid Mubarak” (Ah-EED MOO-bah-rock)
May 25 – 27 Shavuot (Jewish)
Commemorating the giving of the Torah from God to the nation of Israel on top of Mount Sinai. Common traditions include studying the Torah, devotional programs, the lighting of the Yahrzeit memorial candle and reciting Yizkor, the prayer for the dead.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on either day. “Happy Shavuot,”Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach) or “Chag Shavuot Sameach” (Khahg SHAH-voo-OATE sa-MAY-ach)
Jun. 16 Martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev Sahib (Sikh)
Commemorating Guru Arjan Dev Sahib becoming the first martyr. Common traditions include praying, singing hymns, and attending Sikhism-based lectures.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested.
Jun. 28 – 29 Eid al Adha (Islam)
Festival held in remembrance of Ibrahim sacrificing his son Ishmael per Allah’s commands. Common traditions include gift-giving, prayer and occasionally the slaughtering of sheep with a portion being given to the less fortunate.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first day. Wishing you a joyous Eid al Adha” or “Eid al Adha Mubarak” (Ah-EED AHL ah-TAH MOO-bah-rock)

2023-2024 Academic Year

DATE OBSERVANCE RECOMMENDED ACCOMMODATION CUSTOMARY GREETING
Sept. 15 – 17 Rosh Hashanah (Jewish)
Literally, the “head of the year,” or Jewish New Year, celebrated with remembrance and judgment and auguring in the 10 days of reflection and atonement leading up to Yom Kippur. Common traditions include large meals and prayer.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Wishing you a sweet year,” “Happy new year,” “Shanah Tovah,” (SHAH-NAH TOW-vah), or Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Sept. 24 – 25 Yom Kippur (Jewish)
Considered the holiest of days for Jews, dedication to reparation and abstinence. Common traditions include a day of fasting, praying and the lighting of a Yahrzeit memorial candle in memory of loved ones.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on this date or the following day due to students, faculty and staff fasting. “Have an easy fast,” or “Gmar chatima tova” (GMAR HA-tee-mah TOW-vah)
Sept.29 – 6 Sukkot/Succot (Jewish)
This week-long festival celebrates and gives thanks for the Fall harvest. Common traditions include decorating the Sukkah, an outdoor “room” with a view of the sky.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first two days. Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Oct. 6 – 8 Shemini Atzeret/Simchat Torah (Jewish)
Shemini Atzeret features the prayer for rain and the Yizkor prayer for the dead while Simchat Torah celebrates the Torah with marching, dancing and reading of the Torah.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first two days. “Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach), “gut yontiff”
Oct. 15 – 24 Navratri (Hindu) Generally, this holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, provide accommodations if requested. “Happy Navratri to you and your family”
Nov. 12 Diwali/Deepavali (Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Buddhist)
Known as the “Festival of Lights,” it is celebrated by various Southern Asian religions. Participants celebrate the triumph of good over evil (or lightness over darkness). Common traditions include the lighting of oil lamps, setting off fireworks and praying.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Happy Diwali,” or “Wishing you a Diwali that brings happiness, prosperity and joy”
Dec. 7 – 15 Chanukah/Hanukkah (Jewish)
Known also as the “Festival of Lights,” this eight-day observance celebrates the Jews’ historic struggle for religious freedom and the right to be different, commemorating the historic victory of the Maccabees against the Syrian-Greeks. Common traditions include gift-giving, eating sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts) and latkes (potato pancakes), singing and the nightly lighting of the menorah.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. “Happy Chanukah” (KHA-noo-KAH),  Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach) or “Hanukkah Sameach”
Dec. 25 Christmas Day (Christian)
Honoring the birth of Jesus and his self-sacrifice. Common traditions include gift-giving, praying in church, decorating Christmas trees and visiting family.
Accommodations are generally not required since this is a national holy day in the U.S. and the University is closed. “Merry Christmas”
Jan. 2 Vaikunta Ekadasi (Hindu)
Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, it is believed that on this day, the gate to heaven opens. Common traditions include fasting, worshipping, meditating and singing.
Provide vegan food accommodations. “Happy Vaikunta Ekadashi” (VY-koon-tah ah-kah-DAH-shee)
Jan. 17 Gurpurab (Sikh)
Commemorating the birthday of Guru Gobind Singh Sahib, the tenth Sikh Guru, known as the Father of Khalsa. Common traditions include reading religious texts, praying, singing and eating large festive meals.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested  “Happy Gurpurab” (goor-POOR-ob)
Feb. 14 Ash Wednesday (Christian)
Signifying the beginning of Lent, a 40-day period leading up to Easter, during which many Christians give up some of their common pleasures. Common traditions include wearing a cross of ashes on one’s forehead and attending church service.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities due to many participants fasting.
Mar. 8 Maha Shivaratri (Hindu)
Honoring Shiva, one of the Hindu deities. Common traditions include fasting, meditating, singing and all-night worshipping.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities due to students, faculty and staff fasting. “Happy Maha Shivratri” (mah-HA shiv-RAH-tree)
Mar. 10 – Apr. 9 Ramadan/Ramazan (Islam)
Focusing on faith, this holy observance celebrates the Quran being revealed for the first time during this month on the night of Laylat al Qadr. Common traditions include fasting during daylight hours, eating the iftar meal each night after reading the Quran, refraining from any bad habits and attending night prayers at Mosques.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling important deadlines or activities due to students, faculty and staff fasting during daylight hours. “Ramadan Mubarak” (MOO-bah-ROK) or “Happy Ramadan”
Mar. 11 Ramakrishna (Hindu)
Honoring the birth of Ramakrishna, a Hindu mystic and saint.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested
Mar. 18 Clean Monday (Eastern Orthodox)
Signifying the first day of Great Lent, the name refers to the leaving behind of sinful attitudes and non-fasting foods. The week following this holy day is often referred to as “Clean Week” and common practices include going to confession and consumption of shellfish and other fasting foods.
Provide vegan food accommodations. “Happy Purim” (PUH-rim) or Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Mar. 20 – 21 Norouz/Norooz/Naw-Ruz (Bahá’í)
The Bahá’í New Year, honoring spring and the new life that comes with it. Common traditions include praying, dancing and eating large meals.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Happy Norooz” (NO-rooz) or “Happy Persian New Year”
Mar. 23 – 24 Purim (Jewish)
Commemorating Esther saving the Jews that were living in Persia. Common traditions include reading the Book of Esther, dressing in costumes, holding carnivals and eating hamentaschen (triangular, filled pastries).
Provide Kosher food accommodations. This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
Mar. 29 Good Friday (Christian)
Commemorating the execution of Jesus, this holy day occurs the Friday before Easter. Common traditions include attending church service, praying and fasting.
Provide food accommodations (meat is prohibited for some). Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Have a blessed Good Friday”
Mar. 31 Easter (Christian)
Recognizing Jesus’ resurrection from death. Common traditions include gifting others with colorful eggs and candy (sometimes chocolate-shaped bunnies) and gathering with family for a large meal.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. “Happy Easter”
Apr. 13 Baisakhi/Birthday of the Khalsa (Sikh)
Celebrating the New Year and founding of Sikhism in 1699. Common traditions include dance, music, parades and the chanting of scripture.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested “Happy Baisakhi” (BAY-ZAK-ee)
Apr. 22 – 30 Passover/Pesach (Jewish)
Honoring the emancipation of the Jewish slaves from ancient Egypt and the delivering of the subsequent delivering of the 10 Commandments from God. Common traditions include the ritual seder meal, reading from the Haggadah, family gatherings and lighting of the yahrzeit memorial candle.
Provide Kosher and Kosher-for-Passover (non-leavened) food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first or last two days. “Happy Passover,” “Happy Pesach” {PAY-sockh) orChag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach)
May 4 – 5 Yom HaShoah (Jewish)
Held to remember the lives lost in the Holocaust and the many brave activists who fought against it. Common traditions include memorial ceremonies during which names of the dead are read aloud and the reciting of the Kaddish (prayer for the dead).
Provide Kosher food accommodations “Never forget,” Never again.”
May 5 Pascha (Eastern Orthodox)
Recognizes Jesus’ resurrection from death. Twelve weeks of preparation precede this holy day. Celebrated with a collection of services combined as one.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities.
Apr. 6 Laylat Al Qadr (Islam)
Commemorating the Quran first being revealed to Muhammed, this holy day is traditionally celebrated on the 27th day of Ramadan. Common traditions include praying late into the evening.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities due to students, faculty and staff praying late into the evening.
Apr. 9 – 10 Eid Al-Fitr (Islam)
Signifying the last day of Ramadan and the end of the fasting period. Common traditions include exchanging gifts, praying, and feasting with friends and family.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities. Employees participating often request this day off. “Eid Mubarak” (Ah-EED MOO-bah-rock)
Apr. 21 – May 2 Ridván (Bahá’í)
Commemorating when Bahá’u’lláh proclaimed his mission as God’s messenger. Common traditions include reading excerpts recounting Bahá’u’lláh’s stay in the Garden of Ridván. On the first day, elections for the democratically elected bodies, or spiritual assemblies, that help govern the Bahá’í community occur.
Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first, ninth or last day as these are held as non-working days. “Happy Ridvan” (REZ-von)
Jun. 11 – 13 Shavuot (Jewish)
Commemorating the giving of the Torah from God to the nation of Israel on top of Mount Sinai. Common traditions include studying the Torah, devotional programs, the lighting of the Yahrzeit memorial candle and reciting Yizkor, the prayer for the dead.
Provide Kosher food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on either day. “Happy Shavuot,”Chag Sameach” (Khahg sa-MAY-ach) or “Chag Shavuot Sameach” (Khahg SHAH-voo-OATE sa-MAY-ach)
Jun. 16 Martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev Sahib (Sikh)
Commemorating Guru Arjan Dev Sahib becoming the first martyr. Common traditions include praying, singing hymns, and attending Sikhism-based lectures.
This holy day does not have significant work restrictions. However, accommodations should be provided if requested.
Jun. 15 Eid al Adha (Islam)
Festival held in remembrance of Ibrahim sacrificing his son Ishmael per Allah’s commands. Common traditions include gift-giving, prayer and occasionally the slaughtering of sheep with a portion being given to the less fortunate.
Provide Halal food accommodations. Avoid scheduling deadlines or activities on the first day. Wishing you a joyous Eid al Adha” or “Eid al Adha Mubarak” (Ah-EED AHL ah-TAH MOO-bah-rock)