Retirement Planning

Through our partnership with our retirement plan administrator, TIAA, the University offers generous retirement benefits.

You may contribute to the University’s Voluntary Retirement Plan immediately upon hire or at any time by electing pre-tax and/or after-tax Roth 403(b) contributions.

Subject to the terms of the Noncontributory Retirement Plan, upon reaching your one-year anniversary, the University will contribute 10 percent of your eligible pay, subject to IRS maximums. If you are coming from another eligible four-year institution, you may be eligible to waive your one-year waiting period. The waiver form and directions are available below.

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Investment Options

One-step investing is easy when you select a single lifecycle fund. The T. Rowe Price Target Date Funds provide a one-step investing option for those who do not wish to actively manage their retirement account. Each fund combines a mix of stocks, bonds and other investments in proportions that adjust over time based on your age and expected retirement date.

Alternatively, if you prefer to design your own investment mix, view the options available [PDF], and build a diversified mix that’s right for you. You may choose from actively managed or passive funds, including fixed and variable annuities, mutual funds, inflation-protected securities and real estate funds.

If you do not designate your investments, your contributions, and any contributions made on your behalf by the University will automatically go into the T. Rowe Price Target Date Fund for the year closest to the year you will reach age 65. You can make changes to your investments at any time.


Step 1: Designate your voluntary contributions

When you contribute to your own retirement through the Voluntary Retirement Plan, you can designate your contributions as either pre-tax Traditional 403(b), or after-tax Roth 403(b) [PDF] up to the maximum amount permitted by law, which is adjusted each year.

For calendar year 2024, the maximum contribution is capped at $23,000. If you are over age 50, or turn 50 during calendar year 2024, you are permitted to make additional catch-up contributions of up to $7,500, for a total of $30,500. Employees who have completed at least 15 years of service with the University may be able to contribute additional catch-up amounts.

Note: If you made contributions to a previous employer’s plan during the calendar year, you must include those contributions to make sure you do not exceed the annual maximum.

If you contribute on a pre-tax basis, you will pay taxes on the amount you contribute, as well as any earnings, when you take a distribution from your account.  If you make your contributions to a Roth account, you pay taxes now on the amount you contribute, and both the contributions and earnings are generally tax-free when withdrawn as a qualified distribution.

Those who desire to begin or end their voluntary contributions outside of a new hire or annual open enrollment period, must complete the Voluntary Salary Reduction Form available below. Otherwise, once you have made an initial designation, your voluntary contributions can be adjusted in MySlice at any time by following these steps:

  1. Log into MySlice.
  2. From the “Employee Home” page select the “HR/Benefits” tile.
  3. Within the “HR/Benefits” tile, ensure that you are on your “Benefits Summary.”
  4. In your “Benefits Summary,” locate the row for “TIAA Voluntary GSRA” from your list of benefits and then select it.
  5. This will then bring you to a detailed view of your “TIAA Voluntary GSRA.” To make changes select the “Edit” button at the bottom of the page.
  6. On the next screen that appears, make any applicable changes and then select “Save” at the bottom of the page.
  7. You will receive an automated email to your account confirming your change.

Step 2: Create Your Account with TIAA

Visit to create your account at TIAA. Once your account has been created, you will be able to select or update your investments, and designate your beneficiaries.

One-on-One Assistance

Not sure which investment option is right for you, or how much you should contribute? TIAA offers personalized advice and education to help you pursue your retirement goals. To schedule a meeting with one of the University’s dedicated TIAA financial consultants, or for assistance with your account, contact TIAA at 855.842.CUSE (TTY: 800.842.2755), or sign up online. We encourage you to watch this short video to help you prepare for your meeting. As part of your benefits program, this service is available at no additional cost to you.

Online Tools

On you will find a wealth of online financial planning tools, including the Retirement Goal Evaluator, Asset Allocation Evaluator, and the Voluntary TDA Advantage Calculator, among others. You can also register to attend live webinars on a variety of topics to help you plan for a successful retirement (replays are available on-demand within 30 days of the scheduled event).

Should you have any questions, or require accommodations to access any information on this webpage, please reach out to HR Shared Services at 315.443.4042.

Helpful Links

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information contained within this website is accurate. However, the benefits are governed by legal documents (which, in certain circumstances, may include insurance contracts). If there is any difference between the information in this website and the official documents, the official documents will control. As is the case with all of Syracuse University’s employee benefit plans, the University reserves the right to modify or terminate these benefits at any time.