Human Resources Mission, Vision, and Strategic Goals For You

Retirement Transition Options

Transitioning into retirement is a significant decision, which may require a phased approach for some. The University recognizes this need with its offering of retirement transition program options: Voluntary Partial Retirement (VPR) and Advanced Retirement Declaration (ARD). 

The VPR framework, a phased retirement program, sets the stage for an individual to shift gears into retirement through a phased approach by way of allowing additional time away from campus before transitioning to full retirement. 

Reduced work time and adjusting to a different income stream, while maintaining a full complement of benefits, are an advantage for those who participate. Purdue also benefits when VPR participants are able to transfer knowledge and skills to others, serving as a mentor to colleagues assuming new responsibilities.

VPR schedules allow for flexibility during such transitional times.

Sometimes academic assignments are scheduled so that all workload falls into one semester allowing the VPR participant to be away from campus the other semester. Other individuals find a year-round half-time arrangement is possible when workload is reduced. Occasionally, a seasoned professional moves to a special project for the duration of their VPR arrangement.


To participate, a faculty, executive, or professional/management staff member located on the West Lafayette campus must participate in the PSRS retirement program and meet the criteria for official retiree designation:

Age: 55 Years old or more
Years of Service 10 or more years of service in a benefits eligible position.

VPR Provisions

Program participation:

  • Determine reduced rate of employment. The proposed arrangement must align with the business needs of the department, with support from the supervisor and Unit Head. Approval is at the discretion of the Responsible Executive Approver.
  • Agreement may span up to five years. Duration of the retirement accord cannot be lengthened nor the percentage of time employed increased (both may decrease with mutual consent upon completion and submission of revised agreement).
  • Full retirement identified as part of a written agreement
  • Eligibility to participate in the PSRS retirement program is required throughout the duration of the program.
  • Maintain exemption status from the overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), including the minimum salary test. The resulting reduction in pay must remain above the minimum salary threshold for exempt employees throughout the entirety of the program.

Reduced schedule guidelines:

  • Reduced work schedule must be no greater than 80 percent or less than 50 percent effort each month, unless opting for 0% for a semester/6 months or longer.
  • Variable schedules require an elected percentage of working time (FTE) to remain in effect for a minimum of a semester or longer.
  • Current FLSA minimum salary threshold must be met at all times.
  • Preferred schedule arrangements include:
    • Option 1 – Ideal for AY faculty
      • Fall: 0%, Spring: 100% work effort
      • Fall: 100%, Spring: 0% work effort
    • Option 2 – Ideal for FY faculty and staff
      • A set percent of work time throughout the VPR arrangement within the prescribed 50-80% work effort limitations (i.e. working 50% or 75% effort year-round).
  • All schedule revisions require submission of a revised VPR agreement form.

VPR Benefits

During the period of reduced employment, the University will:

  • Continue healthcare, life insurance and long-term disability benefits based on full-time salary.
  • Contribute its regular contribution to the 403(b) Base retirement plan based on the staff member’s full-time basic annual budgeted salary. The staff member will continue 4% contribution to 401(a) Mandatory plan based on actual pay during the pay period.
  • Allow distributions from University retirement accounts while working under a VPR arrangement.
  • Vacation and sick leave will accrue at the reduced employment level; any excess vacation pay out processed when the VPR arrangement commences.

Application Process

If there is general agreement about the change in your workload, click the DocuSign link below to begin the approval process. Should you have questions, please contact your business office. Here are some tools to assist you in establishing your own VPR arrangement:

An Alternative: The Advanced Retirement Declaration

Faculty and staff nearing the end of their careers may need additional resources to prepare financially for their retirement years. Normally faculty and professional/management staff must separate from service before any retirement funds may be distributed.  With the “official retiree” age/years of service criteria met, an individual may receive cash withdrawals or annuity payments from their retirement accumulations while employed full time under the provisions of the Advanced Retirement Declaration. The individual must specify a retirement date within two years of the commencement of withdrawal or payments from retirement accumulations. The payout options from the defined contribution retirement system will be the same as available to regular retirees.

Sample Letter

Please submit a signed copy of the letter to with “ARD Request” in the subject line of the email.

Contact Us

For questions on the following, contact:

Retirement distributions from Fidelity: 800-343-0860
Retirement distributions from TIAA: 800-842-2776
Help with retiree medical coverage: 765 494-1694
General Purdue benefits: 765-494-2222 or