Kay Spiritual Life Center


  • Kay Spiritual Life Center
    Fax: 202-885-3317
    Kay Spiritual Life Center, Room

    Office Hours: Monday-Friday 9 AM to 9 PM

    Joe Eldridge
    University Chaplain
    Assistant Director

Mailing Address

Religious Holy Days Policy

The following is a guideline for your rights and responsibilities regarding religious observances. The university administration, in reaffirming American University's historic commitment to diversity, makes it clear that religious observance is to be honored. The following paragraph is included in a letter recently sent by the provost to all faculty:

The calendar on the back of this memorandum lists the major religious holy days for the 2013-2014 academic year. Included on the calendar are notes that explain some of the religious commitments associated with some of the holy days. Please share this list with your colleagues and refer to it when preparing your syllabi. The holy days listed in bold are those that most likely will have a number of students requesting accommodation. Especially on those holy days, please try to avoid scheduling exams or other important events. If you must schedule important class events on these days, please provide proper notification in your syllabi and give students reasonable opportunities to make-up the missed work. Students have been instructed to notify faculty in advance if they are intending to miss class for a religious commitment.

You will find a list of some major holy days for the 2013-2014 Academic Year here. Please note that professors and classroom instructors are obligated to be flexible to accommodate religious observance. However, students must inform their professors of their religious obligations in a timely manner.

If you have any questions about the policy or about religious observance, please contact any of the chaplains listed below. Thank you.

Jason Benkendorf, Hillel Executive Director
202-885-3322 -

Ms. Donna Denize, Baha'i Chaplain
202-537-6478 -

Pandit Vishnu Ramphal, Hindu/Vedic Chaplain
202-885-1912 -

Rev. Mark Schaefer, United Methodist Chaplain
202-885-3304 -

Imad-ad-Dean Ahmad, Muslim Chaplain
301-946-9437 -

Fr. Carlos Quijano, O.P., Catholic Chaplain
202-885-3294 -

Bhante Uparatana, Buddhist Chaplain
301-946-9437 -