Post-Doctoral Scholars may participate in the Optional Retirement Plan (ORP) as set forth by Oregon law.


  • Employees of the University holding an Educational Visa (i.e., J-1, F-1, etc.) are not eligible to participate in the retirement program per Oregon Revised Statute 238.015(4) and Oregon Administrative Rule 459.010.0025(1).


The information on this website and in the ORP Retirement Options for Post-Doctoral Participants Guide is intended to assist in the administration of the plan and it includes a summary of common ORP Plan provisions. Contact the Retirement team in the Employee Benefits office at for more information and assistance with questions, transactions, or circumstances not included on this website or the guide. In case of conflict between this website or the guide and the official plan documents of the ORP and Oregon state law regulating OPSRP/PERS, the official plan documents, Oregon state law, and federal regulations will govern. A copy of the ORP Full Plan document is available on the Oregon Public University Retirement Program (OPURP) website.

New Post-Doctoral Scholar Employees

Please review the Roadmap to OSU’s Retirement Benefits: Post-Doctoral Scholar Employees for guidance during your first 6 months of employment.


Post-Doctoral Scholars hired on or after January 1, 2018.

Eligibility begins on the first day of the month following the later of:

  • Enrollment in the public universities' Tax-Deferred Investment 403(b) Plan under ORS 243.820; or
  • Completion of:
    • 600 hours of employment or the equivalent as determined by the governing board; and
    • Six months of employment that is not interrupted by more than 30 consecutive working days.

Optional Retirement Plan [ORP) - Post-Doctoral Scholars

The Optional Retirement Plan (ORP) is administered by Oregon Public University Retirement Program (OPURP) through Fidelity Investments or TIAA. This program is a defined contribution plan* and is participant-directed (you select the investments). Your account is credited with earnings/losses based on your investment returns. At retirement, you will work directly with TIAA or Fidelity to withdraw, roll, or take distributions from your account. The ORP program does not provide a guaranteed lifetime benefit. ORP Post-Doctoral Scholars benefit is:

  • Up to a 4% employer match if you participate in the voluntary retirement savings Tax Deferred Investment (TDI) 403(b) program through TIAA or Fidelity.

Important Note about Contribution Limits: The ORP is a Defined Contribution Plan and is subject to IRS limits on contributions. The current IRS limits can be found in the ORP Plan Highlights. Contributions made to the Tax-Deferred Investment (TDI) 403(b) Plan are subject to limits of that plan. When planning your TDI contributions, pay careful attention to the limits applicable to the TDI Plan. ORP Employer Match contributions will only be paid on a per-pay-period frequency based on TDI contributions made during that month. (e.g. you will receive ORP Employer Match contributions only if you make a TDI contribution during the month.)


You will need to complete and return the 403(b) Voluntary Savings Plan form. You will receive an email with further instructions during your fourth month of employment.


Optional Retirement Plan (ORP) - Post-Doctoral Scholars

  • Employer Match Account
    • 100% vested once membership is established


Oregon Public Universities - ORP Website
ORP Retirement Options for Post-Doctoral Participants Guide
ORP Full Plan Document
OSU HR Retirement Resources: Savings Opportunities - 403b and 457
OSU HR Workshop/Seminars


*Defined Contribution= retirement plan benefit at retirement is based on the contributions to the plan plus any investment earnings. This is not a lifetime benefit.