The 2020 UTC Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program (the Program) is a proactive measure designed to promote efficient alignment of demand (e.g., instructional needs or administrative workload) with campus resources.


Participation in the Program is strictly voluntary.  The Program is open to employees who – as of June 30, 2020 – have 20 years of service AND meet one of the following criteria:

  1. Eligible for Service Retirement[1] under the Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System (TCRS);
  2. Eligible for Early Retirement under TRCRS[2];
  3. Eligible for retirement under the Joint Contributory Retirement System (JCRS-A) ; OR
  4. Participate in the Optional Retirement Program (ORP) and meet the 20-year service requirement. [3]

UTC may limit the number of participants in this Program and may deny participation of any applicant based on business continuity and campus needs.  Approved participants may also be required to delay effective date of retirement based on campus needs.  When the number of participants will be limited, approval for participation may be based on years of creditable service or a phased approach may be utilized as a means to ensure continuity of service. UTC may discontinue this Program at any time, without notice.

Retirements currently in process:

This Program is open to employees who have provided written notice to UTC administration of the intent to retire, so long as the employee has not yet separated from University service at the time of his/her application for participation in this Program.

Grant-funded employees:

Employees whose base salaries are funded (in whole or in part) by federal grant/contract funds are not eligible to participate in this Program due to federal regulations regarding expenditure of federal funds.  For questions about how this requirement may affect a particular situation, please contact Todd Dockery in HR.

Terms of the Retirement Incentive:

  • Retirement Incentive payment: Participants will receive a lump sum incentive payment of 50% of the employee’s annualized base salary (not including any administrative or other stipend amounts) in effect on June 30, 2020, or the separation date, if sooner.
  • Faculty Emeritus/a: Faculty members who retire at the rank of Professor or Associate Professor may request the title of Professor Emeritus/a, which will be reviewed under the normal procedures.
  • Separation date: Participants will retire under this Program with a separation date no later than June 30, 2020, unless otherwise approved in writing by the University. All rights and obligations described in University policies and procedures remain unaffected by this Program and will continue to apply regardless of an employee’s application or participation.

Program Application Timeline:

  • Application process: Eligible employees will receive an e-mail attaching the application, disclosures required by law, and a sample Retirement Incentive Agreement and Release for review. Eligible employees interested in participating must complete the 2020 UTC Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program Application and return it by October 15, 2019 to UTC Human Resources, located at 720 McCallie Avenue, or by e-mail attachment at personnel@utc.edu.
  • Demographic disclosures: Federal law requires that the Program materials include a disclosure of certain demographic data regarding all eligible employees.  The demographic data will be provided together with the application.
  • Notice of acceptance: Applicants who are accepted for participation in the Program will be notified of acceptance by e-mail and regular U.S. mail. A Retirement Incentive Agreement and Release will be provided with the notice of acceptance. Once accepted, in order to participate, an applicant will be required to submit the signed agreement no later than close of business on November 15, 2019. If a signed agreement is not submitted by the deadline, the offer of participation in this Program is revoked and may be offered to another applicant.

[1]  Service Retirement (with unreduced benefits) under TCRS/JCRS is open to vested members aged 60 or older with at least 5 years of creditable service, or any age with at least 30 years of creditable service.

[2]  Early Retirement (reduced benefits) under TCRS/JCRS is open to vested members aged 55 or older with at least 10 years of creditable service, or any age with at least 25 years of creditable service.

[3]  For purposes of this Program, “years of service” or “service” for a participant in ORP will be determined by the calculation of state service equivalent to the TCRS “creditable service” calculation (ORP creditable service equivalent).

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