Incentive Plan for Tenured Faculty Retirement

Provost Boyce announces the renewal of the Incentive Plan for Tenured Faculty Retirement through December 31, 2026, available to faculty at select schools.

May 03, 2023

Dear Colleagues,

Ten years ago, John Coatsworth announced the introduction of a five-year pilot program, the Incentive Plan for Tenured Faculty Retirement. This voluntary plan was made available to full-time tenured faculty in the schools that elected to participate: Arts and Sciences (including the School of the Arts), GSAPP, Business, Journalism, Engineering, SIPA, and Social Work. The program was renewed through the establishment of a new Incentive Plan for Tenured Faculty Retirement that went into effect on January 1, 2019, and currently remains in place until December 31, 2023 for faculty in the same schools.

As we near December 31, 2023, the end of this current incentive program, I am pleased to announce its renewal from January 1, 2024, through December 31, 2026. Like the current plan, the renewed program aims to serve three principal goals. First, it supplements the retirement resources currently provided for tenured faculty who wish to commence a new phase of their life by retiring after age 65. Second, by establishing terms for retirement known in advance, faculty will be able to plan ahead more effectively. Third, it permits faculty to phase their retirement out over a period of years to allow for a more gradual transition to retirement.

Tenured faculty who meet the eligibility conditions will receive an incentive payment equal to 100 percent of their annual base salary upon retirement.

Eligibility is limited to full-time tenured faculty with at least ten years of continuous service at the University, and who are between the ages of 65 and 73. Faculty who are over 73 are encouraged to meet with their dean to explore individually-tailored options.

Faculty aged 65 and over who participate in the program must commit to initiating retirement by the time they reach age 74. Retirement may take place all at once or be phased through reduced activity at reduced salary, with terms subject to the approval of the faculty member’s dean. For agreements signed under the new Plan that begins on January 1, 2024, faculty can phase their retirement over a period of up to three years.

Faculty considering the Incentive Plan should meet with their dean or department chair to discuss retirement arrangements. While the faculty described above are eligible to apply to participate in the Plan, faculty must enter into a written retirement agreement with the University which includes specific terms and conditions set by the University for participation.

An additional resource that faculty can call on is The Office of Faculty Retirement. This office provides information and advice for all Columbia faculty contemplating retirement as well as those who have already begun this new phase of their careers. Vice Provost Eugenia Lean, who oversees the Office of Faculty Retirement, is available for your consultation as you navigate the retirementprocess. She can be reached by email at [email protected].

I encourage you to take advantage of these resources and review the Incentive Plan for Tenured Faculty Retirement to consider what options are right for you.


Mary C. Boyce
Professor of Mechanical Engineering