DePaul University Academic Affairs > Faculty Resources > Scholarship > University Research Council > URC Paid Leave Program
The URC paid leave program supports research projects that would be difficult or impossible to undertake without suspension of other contractual responsibilities. URC leaves support only research activities in the interest of faculty development; other forms of leave (e.g., for illness, personal reasons, or a temporary position elsewhere) should be handled through college offices.
Paid leaves are granted for one quarter or one semester at full pay, for two quarters at up to 83% of normal salary, or 50% of the normal contract salary for a full year leave (i.e. three quarters or two semesters, depending). In all cases, salary reductions will be spread over the entirety of the fiscal year in which the leave occurs, as a means to evenly distribute the salary reduction for faculty. A faculty member who accepts a paid leave at less than full pay is understood to be amending his/her annual contract.
Planning within the various academic units is necessary. Faculty should notify their department chairperson and other appropriate administrators of their intention to apply for a leave. To ensure university-wide equitable distribution of leaves, such participation should be encouraged and enabled for all academic units. If possible, junior faculty should take advantage of this leave in advance of their tenure review. Faculty are encouraged to attend the leave orientation workshop offered in the fall to be aware of the eligibility requirements and application procedures. Faculty are expected to follow the How to Apply section below and submit all requested information. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Faculty members planning a leave should consider external sources of funding as well as the QIC and URC programs. External fellowship deadlines usually occur 18 to 24 months before the intended start-date of the fellowship. Therefore, faculty should start planning for a paid leave 2 years before the planned leave. Faculty members are encouraged to contact the Office of Research Services for assistance with external funding.
Full-time tenure-track probationary faculty are eligible to apply for a URC paid leave if they will have completed two consecutive years of full-time tenure-track service at DePaul as of the time that the requested leave will commence. Tenure-track probationary faculty may receive only one pre-tenure leave.
Full-time tenured faculty are eligible to apply for a paid leave if they will have completed six years of full-time tenure-track service at DePaul by the time the requested leave will commence. Full-time tenured faculty previously awarded a QIC paid leave or a URC paid leave may take another leave after having completed at least three years in residence at DePaul. (This three-year period begins immediately after the completion of the prior leave.) In addition, no individual may receive more than a total of three quarters or two semesters of leave during a six-year period. (The six-year period starts when the first leave begins).
All leave applicants, whether pre- or post-tenure, are expected to have fulfilled the reporting requirements for projects previously supported by the University Councils.
Applications must be submitted by December 15th in the academic year preceding the academic year of the requested leave. For example, applications for paid leaves to be taken during the 2024-2025 academic year are due by December 15, 2023. Letters of support from the applicant's chair (if applicable) and dean are due no later than December 22nd.
Paid leave proposals are accepted on-line via the Blackbaud proposal system. Click here for instructions on navigating to it. If you have followed the instructions but do not appear to have access to the system, write to URC@depaul.edu.
To be considered complete, a paid leave proposal must include the following:
Tenure review year.
Title of the project to be undertaken
during the paid leave.
Abstract — A one-paragraph overview of
Work plan & timeline — The work plan
and timeline should be thorough, realistic, and feasible. Further, the expected
outcomes for the project should be clearly specified.
Narrative — A narrative of approximately 5 – 6
single-spaced pages should describe the project clearly, in language that is as
non-technical as possible. It should establish the need for the project and include
a clear description of its goals and objectives. Further, the narrative should
explain the relationship between the project and the applicant's teaching,
research, and/or service interests.
References (not included in the above page total) should be appended to the
narrative as needed. (Applicants will be
asked to attach the narrative in the application. This must be in PDF format.)
Current CV. The CV should list all publications, highlighting those that are relevant to the project in the application. (The CV is attached to
the application in PDF format.)
Letters of support from the applicant’s
chair (if applicable) and dean. Names and email addresses must be submitted into Blackbaud. Once the proposal has been submitted, an email notification is sent to the chair/dean with a link to submit their letter. All letters must be submitted within one week of the application deadline, therefore it is recommended to submit proposals prior to the deadline to give chairs/deans ample time.
Leaves must be requested and taken in
units of whole terms or semesters. Leaves may not spread out as "course
reductions" over additional terms or semesters.
Faculty operating on the quarter system
who teach seven or more courses will receive a three-course reduction for their
one-quarter academic leave. Faculty teaching fewer than seven courses will
teach two courses each quarter when not on leave. Faculty with course
reductions related to administrative or other duties will work out the terms of
their leaves with their dean.
A report describing leave activities and
outcomes is due one-month after the leave end and is submitted through Blackbaud. An email notification will be sent from Blackbaud that contains a link to complete the report. The report can also be accessed by logging in directly into Blackbaud.
The university is not obligated to provide
an instructional or research leave to any member of the faculty. The final
decision on academic leaves rests with the Provost.