Professional News

UK Offers Voluntary Retirement to Eligible Faculty

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 27, 2011) – The University of Kentucky today announced efforts to provide voluntary retirement incentives to eligible tenured faculty.

Tenured Faculty Incentivized Retirement – similar to what is offered at other major universities -- is designed to reward tenured faculty with a voluntary opportunity to retire with a financial incentive, while also creating greater financial flexibility within colleges and academic departments to meet the evolving needs of today’s students.

“UK recognizes that the tumultuous economy of the last few years has had an impact on our university and our academic programs,” said Provost Kumble Subbaswamy. “This program is intended to acknowledge the contribution of our long-serving faculty and reward their extended service, while also thinking and acting creatively about how our institution needs to evolve and grow in the future.”

Details about incentivized voluntary retirement include:

Voluntary retirement incentives will be available to tenured faculty members age 65 and older who have at least 15 years of continuous service. Voluntary retirement only extends to eligible faculty, not staff or tenure-ineligible faculty, because it effectively is a buy-back of tenure, the guaranteed life-time contract by which senior faculty work at any institution of higher learning.

In addition, tenured clinician faculty – those who provide the vast majority of their service in a patient care setting such as the hospital – are not eligible. Extending the effort in this manner would be, potentially, disruptive to the operation of clinical functions such as the hospital and dental clinics.

University officials estimate that about 170 faculty are eligible. Those eligible will be offered a one-time payment equal to one-half of an eligible faculty member’s base salary. The incentive is capped at $150,000.


Eligible faculty who elect to participate must retire by Dec. 31, 2011. Those eligible will have the next several weeks to make a decision about whether to participate.

Additional information is available for download in PDF format.