Office of the Provost

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Religious Holidays during the 2020-2021 Academic Year

The religious holidays that might pose conflicts with the 2020-2021 academic calendar are shown here. This is not an exhaustive list and there may be other holidays that pose conflicts for students.

U-M Guidance to Students Regarding Conflicts Between the Academic and Religious Calendars

U-M School of Information logoMany of the holidays listed below are linked to Fact Sheets prepared by a U-M School of Information Project Team with input and review from religious leaders and community organizations. The UMSI team members are Jacques Chestnut, Rebecca Epstein, Claudia Leo, James Reitz, Colum Slevin, Barbara Smith (project lead), and Todd Stuart.

Most religions contain multiple sects, and even within a single sect – multiple practices around a holiday can be found. Authors of these Fact Sheets have attempted to generally describe an event that is likely celebrated in many different ways. If someone feels the authors have misrepresented any information or would like information added, they are open to feedback. Please email them to

Martyrdom of the Báb *** Baha’i July 9
Holy Day of Arafah ** Islam July 29
Eid al-Adha ** Islam July 31
Paryushan ** Jain August 16-23
1st of Muharram (Islamic New Year) ** Islam August 20
10th of Muharram (Ashura) ** Islam August 29
Rosh Hashanah * Jewish September 18 - 20
Yom Kippur * Jewish September 27 - 28
Sukkot * Jewish October 2 - 9
Shemini Atzeret/Simchat Torah * Jewish October 10 - 11
Birth of the Báb *** Baha'i October 18
Birth of Bahá’u’lláh *** Baha’i October 19
Birth of the Prophet Muhammad ** Islam October 29
Diwali ** Hindu November 14
Hanukkah * Jewish December 10 - 18
Christmas Christian December 25
Kwanzaa Interfaith / African-American December 26 - January 1
Feast of Epiphany Christian January 6
Eastern Orthodox Christmas Orthodox Christian January 7
Sankranti Hindu January 15
Lunar New Year Interfaith / National February 12
Ash Wednesday Christian February 17
Purim * Jewish February 25 -26
Eastern Orthodox Beginning of Lent Orthodox Christian March 15
Naw‐Rúz *** Baha’i March 20
Passover (Pesach) * Jewish March 27 - April 4
Good Friday Christian April 2
Easter Christian April 4
Ramadan **             2021 Factsheet Islam April 12 - May 11
Vaisakhi Sikh April 14
First Day of Ridván *** Baha’i April 20
Ninth Day of Ridván *** Baha’i April 28
Eastern Orthodox Holy Friday Orthodox Christian April 30
Twelfth Day of Ridván *** Baha’i May 1
Eastern Orthodox Easter (Pascha) Orthodox Christian May 2
23rd Night of Ramadan ** Islam May 4
27th Night of Ramadan ** Islam May 8
Eid al-Fitr ** Islam May 12
Ascension Day Christian May 13
Shavuot * Jewish May 16 - 18
Declaration of the Báb *** Baha’i May 23
Ascension of Bahá'u'lláh *** Baha’i May 28
Eastern Orthodox Ascension Day Orthodox Christian June 10
Juneteenth Inerfaith / African-American June 19
Martyrdom of the Báb *** Baha’i July 9
Holy Day of Arafah ** Islam July 19
Eid al-Adha ** Islam July 20
Shabbat * Jewish Weekly

* Jewish holy days begin and end at sundown on the first and last days listed.
** These holidays are calculated on a lunar calendar and are approximate.
*** The Bahá’í day ends and a new one begins at sunset; consequently, the day on which a Holy Day is observed begins at sunset of the day before the Gregorian calendar dates given above


U-M Guidance to Students Regarding Conflicts Between the Academic and Religious Calendars

Although the University of Michigan, as an institution, does not observe religious holidays, it has long been the University's policy that every reasonable effort should be made to help students avoid negative academic consequences when their religious obligations conflict with academic requirements. Absence from classes or examinations for religious reasons does not relieve students from responsibility for any part of the course work required during the period of absence. Students who expect to miss classes, examinations, or other assignments as a consequence of their religious observance shall be provided with a reasonable alternative opportunity to complete such academic responsibilities. It is the obligation of students to provide faculty with reasonable notice of the dates of religious holidays on which they will be absent. Such notice must be given by the drop/add deadline of the given term. Students who are absent on days of examinations or class assignments shall be offered an opportunity to make up the work, without penalty, unless it can be demonstrated that a make-up opportunity would interfere unreasonably with the delivery of the course. Should disagreement arise over any aspect of this policy, the parties involved should contact the Department Chair, the Dean of the School, or the Ombudsperson. Final appeals will be resolved by the Provost.