2023-2024 Policy Library 
    Dec 06, 2023  
2023-2024 Policy Library

Chapter 13 Retirement from the College

13.1 Retirement

There is no mandatory retirement age at CMC.

Faculty members who have decided to retire should send a written communication to that effect to the Dean of the Faculty’s Office and the Claremont Colleges Services.

Faculty seeking a more gradual transition from full-time teaching to retirement should refer to the College’s Phased Retirement Program, set forth in section 13.2 below.

Further information about the College’s benefit programs, such as the Academic Retirement Plan or Emeriti Retirement Health Plan, can be found on the College’s Human Resources website (under the section heading for “Retirement Guides and Plans”). In addition, faculty members who have questions about these benefit programs are encouraged to contact CMC’s Office of Human Resources (ext. 18490) or the retirement manager at the Claremont Colleges Services (ext. 18805). 

13.2 Phased Retirement Program

To assist tenured faculty to make a transition from full-time teaching to retirement, CMC offers eligible faculty members an option of participating in the Phased Retirement Program. If faculty opt into the Phased Retirement Program, they and the College enter into a one, two, or three year agreement for the termination of tenure. During this one to three year period, the College allows faculty to decrease their teaching responsibilities. If faculty continue to teach two or more courses per year while on this program, they are considered full-time and retain the right to all benefits, office space, and committee assignments. Salaries paid to these faculty will be pro-rated based upon factors including course load, committee appointments, and other responsibilities they maintain as faculty members at the College. Faculty members on phased retirement will be paid eighty (80) percent of their regular salary for teaching three courses and sixty (60) percent of their regular salary for teaching two courses per year.

Participation in the Phased Retirement Program is binding once a faculty member has elected to participate (i.e. the faculty member cannot withdraw from or cancel the agreement). Thus, faculty members who have questions about whether to enter the Program are encouraged to consult with the Dean of the Faculty about taking a reduced teaching load and course buyout for a trial period, so as to get a sense of the salary and course load implications of Phased Retirement. This does not preclude faculty who are not contemplating retirement from taking a reduced teaching load. Detailed information about course buyouts appears in Section 5.1.4 of the Faculty Handbook  .

A tenured faculty member who seeks to participate in the College’s Phased Retirement Program should contact the Dean of the Faculty’s office and will be required to complete an election form and general release agreement.

13.2.1 Faculty Voluntary Early Retirement Program

The College has implemented a Faculty Voluntary Early Retirement Program for tenured faculty members with at least ten [10] years of continuous service as a CMC faculty member who voluntarily retire within the two years following their sixty-seventh [67th] birthday (effective date July 1, 2022).* This means that Eligible Faculty Members who participate in the Program must follow a timeline such that their Retirement Date occurs when they are either 67 or 68 years of age.

Under the Program, eligible faculty members who participate will receive:

  • Severance, paid in a lump sum to the Employee within ten days of the Retirement Date, in the cumulative amount of:
    • 100% of the Eligible Faculty Member’s Base Salary (nine months paid over twelve months) for the academic year immediately preceding the Retirement Date;
    • The equivalent of twelve [12] months of employer contributions on the Eligible Faculty Member’s behalf under the College’s Academic Retirement Plan based on the Faculty Member’s Base Salary; and, 
    • The equivalent of twelve [12] months of the Eligible Faculty Member’s COBRA premiums.
  • Emeritus status as of the effective retirement date and shall be eligible for all of the privileges and benefits provided to Emeriti Faculty as are set forth in Section 13.4.2 below. 

In order to participate in the Program, an Eligible Faculty Member must submit a written Request to Participate to the Dean of the Faculty within two weeks after the commencement of the spring semester in the academic year immediately preceding the Eligible Faculty Member’s Retirement Date. For example, Eligible Faculty Members with a proposed Retirement Date of June 30, 2024, when they are 67 or 68 years of age, will be expected to submit a request to participate within the first two weeks of the spring 2023 semester.

The Dean of the Faculty shall have discretion, based upon the number of requests received and curriculum needs, to approve or defer an Eligible Faculty Member’s Request to Participate by up to 1 academic year. The Dean of the Faculty must let the Eligible Faculty Member know if their request was approved or deferred within four weeks of receiving the request.

After the Dean of Faculty has approved an Eligible Faculty Member’s Request to Participate, the Eligible Faculty Member shall execute and submit an Early Retirement Agreement to the Dean of Faculty within three weeks of the Dean of Faculty’s approval.

* The Faculty Voluntary Early Retirement Program includes both reach back and grandfathering periods so that it is available to: i) CMC tenured faculty members with at least ten [10] years of continuous service as a CMC faculty member and who were 67 years of age or older at their time of retirement, and who retired on or after June 30, 2021; and ii) all current CMC tenured faculty members over the age of 67 as of July 1, 2022, who have at least ten [10] years of continuous service as a CMC faculty member, and who submit a request to participate within two years of July 1, 2022.

Approved by the BOT February 26, 2022.

13.3 Termination of Employment by the College in the Event of Long-Term Medical Disability

In the event that faculty members, due to illness or disability, are unable to return to their regular duties after three (3) years, which time period shall not commence earlier than March 15, 2008, the College shall have the right to terminate their employment. Termination of an appointment with tenure, or of a probationary or special appointment before the end of the period of appointment, because of physical or mental disability, will be based upon clear and convincing medical evidence that the faculty member, even with reasonable accommodation, is no longer able to perform the essential duties of the position. The decision to terminate will be reached only after there has been appropriate consultation and after the faculty member concerned, or someone representing the faculty member, has been informed of the basis of the proposed action and has been afforded an opportunity to present the faculty member’s position (including that faculty member’s medical prognosis) and to respond to the evidence. If the faculty member so requests, the evidence will be reviewed by the Appointment, Promotion, and Tenure Committee before a final decision is made by the Board of Trustees on the recommendation of the administration and the APT Committee. All tenured faculty members whose employment status is terminated as a result of this policy are automatically granted emeritus status.

Approved by the Faculty February 8, 2008

13.4 Faculty Members’ Relationship with the College Post-Retirement

13.4.1 Confidentiality

Any duty to maintain confidentiality incurred while a faculty member of the College continues after separation.

13.4.2 Emeritus Status

Emeritus status is automatically conferred on all tenured faculty members upon retirement. The College highly values the lifelong contributions and experience of its Emeriti faculty, and desires their continuing engagement in College affairs when feasible and appropriate. Accordingly, provided that resources and availability permit, Emeriti faculty may normally

  • Attend Athenaeum talks and other college events
  • Maintain their college email accounts
  • Attend faculty meetings as non-voting members
  • Access IT support staff and computing facilities in support of research and service to the College
  • Take on special administrative, mentoring, or committee assignments that the Dean of the Faculty may designate
  • Attend department meetings as non-voting members, subject to department by-laws
  • Take on special administrative, mentoring, or committee assignment that their department chair may designate
  • Retain their faculty library privileges
  • Maintain access to college athletic facilities
  • Obtain a one-year, renewable parking permit at the standard faculty rate
  • Access Collins Dining Hall at the standard faculty rate
  • Continue to hold their faculty ID cards as required for their emeriti privileges

By default, Emeriti faculty do not normally retain their campus office or laboratory spaces. If availability and circumstances permit, however, it may sometimes be possible for the College to provide some form of access to a designated shared office space as available, subject to change and to annual approval of both the Dean of the Faculty and affected departments.

13.4.3 Emeritus Teaching

After termination of tenure, emeriti may teach courses for the College depending upon need. Compensation would be at a rate determined by the Dean of the Faculty. Emeriti may advise senior theses, upon recommendation of the department chair, at a rate negotiated with the Dean of the Faculty on the condition that a second reader is procured.