Vanderbilt’s 2023 spring break will align with MNPS to better support faculty, postdocs, staff, students

Vanderbilt University will adjust its academic calendar so that the university’s annual spring break aligns with that of Metro Nashville Public Schools beginning in 2023, Chancellor Daniel Diermeier and Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs C. Cybele Raver announced today. The move is designed to support the work-life balance of university faculty, postdocs, staff and students.

Vanderbilt’s next spring break will take place from Saturday, March 11, to Sunday, March 19, 2023. These dates also align with the 2023 spring break schedules of Williamson County Schools as well as most area private schools.

“Shifting our academic calendar to better meet the needs of our faculty and staff with school-age children will help ease the burden of coordinating schedules for these busy families,” Diermeier said. “Aligning a significant time period in our university calendar with that of the broader community will improve overall well-being of our working parents, operational continuity for the university, and greater support for our students.”

A majority of Vanderbilt employees reside in Davidson County—73 percent of faculty and 65 percent of regular staff. Among Vanderbilt Temporary Services workers, 49 percent are Davidson County residents. The new schedule moves the traditional dates of Vanderbilt’s spring break by one week.

“The opportunity to ‘power down’ from work and recharge with family and friends is essential to the strength and well-being of our university community,” Raver said. “This adjustment in the academic calendar is one of a number of simple steps we’re taking to respond to recent university-wide committee recommendations to support our community’s mental health. This is a great way to assist Vanderbilt faculty, postdocs, staff and students in getting some much-deserved rest in the midst of what is often a packed spring semester.”

Diermeier and Raver charged the university’s Calendar Standing Committee with exploring a proposal to align Vanderbilt’s spring break with that of MNPS. The calendar committee includes faculty, staff and students from across campus. The committee, led by Assistant Provost and University Registrar Bart Quinet, consulted with colleagues, deans, associate deans, assistant deans, the Faculty Senate, vice chancellors and the University Staff Advisory Council. The committee found that the proposed change had widespread support. The committee voted in April to amend the 2022–23 academic calendar.

Going forward, the calendar committee will strive to align Vanderbilt’s spring break with that of MNPS as often as is feasible.

Vanderbilt’s professional schools will continue to set their own academic calendars, including scheduled breaks. While some schools are in alignment with the university academic calendar, others maintain calendars unique to the school.