Retirement Policies and Information

Important Considerations for Retirement

Discretionary Funds:  When a faculty member retires from the University, remaining funds in that faculty member’s discretionary accounts revert to the source of the funding.

Appointment End Dates:  Appointment end dates typically fall at the end of an academic term (May 31 or December 31). Under exceptional circumstances, a faculty member may retire on August 31 but only if sponsored funding is available to support the appointment during the months of July and August.

Paid Appointments:  Emeritus faculty may have paid appointments with the University, however, these appointments are not open ended.  There is a specific start and end date and effort associated with the appointment.  These appointments may be for teaching, research or service as agreed upon by the emeritus faculty member and the department chair.  Any such appointment requires a memo from the department chair to the ADAA for approval noting the nature of the activity, the provision for space necessary to complete the activity, as well as the appointment effort, pay rate (which is typically set at the rate prior to retirement) and duration.

Outside Interests:  Any time an emeritus faculty member is actively working on behalf of the University, whether paid or not – it is incumbent upon that faculty member to complete an annual outside interest disclosure.

Sponsored Projects:  Emeritus faculty may continue to act as project directors on sponsored projects and may submit proposals as PI’s as their schedule allows.  An appointment of this type should be processed via a memo from the department chair to the ADAA for approval noting the project title, appointment effort and duration.

Advising Graduate Students:  Emeritus faculty may also continue advising graduate students during retirement. Rackham policy allows emeritus faculty to remain as sole chairs of student Ph.D. committees, however, consideration must be made of availability of the emeritus faculty member for this activity.

Space: Common practice is that active emeritus faculty within a department share an office.  In the event that an emeritus faculty member maintains sponsored projects, sufficient space to meet sponsor commitments and to mentor finishing PhD students should be part of a discussion with the department chair so that the chair may balance these needs along with those of junior faculty who are getting established.

University Policies

There are three SPG’s which directly address several aspects of faculty member retirement:

  • Emeritus/Emerita Titles (SPG 201.80) – Upon recommendation of your department chair, dean or director, and the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, tenure track faculty may be granted the title of Emeritus/a Professor by the Regents of the University.  In the College of Engineering, the Retirement Memoir is typically prepared by the Department Chair during the term in which the retirement is scheduled, and is reviewed by the ADAA office and forwarded to the Regents office for insertion as an agenda item for the last Regent meeting of the semester.  This title entitles you to several benefits such as use of library and computing services, among others.
  • Retirement Furlough (SPG 201.81) – For faculty who joined the University prior to January 1, 1984 and meet the eligibility requirements detailed in this SPG, a terminal retirement furlough year is granted.  This may be taken as the last year preceding retirement, or in partial installments over two or three years prior to the effective date of retirement.  The furlough  may not begin until the start of the next academic year following the faculty members’ 62nd birthday.  Faculty may not have taken a sabbatical leave during the four years preceding the beginning date of the retirement furlough.
  • Retirement (SPG 201.83) – The following age and years of service requirements must be met for a faculty member to qualify for retirement from the University:
Age Years of Continuous Service (as of last day of pay)
50 or younger 30
51 < 28
52 26
53 24
54 22
55 20
56 18
57 16
58 14
59 12
60 10

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