Benefits & Resources for New Hires

Faculty members at the University of Washington enjoy a number of both personal and professional benefits. University employees are offered an excellent benefits package which includes medical and dental insurance, a retirement plan, a voluntary investment program, and tuition exemption for coursework. Effective January 1, 2001 same-sex domestic partners became eligible for medical/dental and life insurance coverage. Progressive policies are in place to assist faculty men and women who become parents or are needed to care for family members. Information on faculty policies regarding medical leave, family leave, tenure extension and support services is can be found at Academic Human Resources. For more information on any of the benefits offered by the University, search committees can direct candidates to the Benefits Office.

In addition to the personal benefits noted above, new faculty members enjoy a number of professional benefits at the University of Washington. World-class research and library facilities, access to technology and graduate student assistance, and numerous programs to help orient new faculty members are all factors that will influence a candidate’s decision to accept a position at the University. The brief summaries of benefits and programs below are designed to help search committees market the University of Washington to job candidates.

Resources for Research

  • The UW Office of Research – OR provides information about research policies and activities on campus. It promotes funds and monitors faculty research. Divisions include Grant and Contract Services, the Royalty Research Fund and Human Subjects.
  • The Diversity Research Institute focuses on generating new, interdisciplinary knowledge about diversity, social justice, and institutional transformation.  The DRI serves as a resource for current and prospective faculty who conduct research on issues of race, gender, class, sexuality, and other aspects of diversity.
  • Undergraduate Research Program (URP) – undergraduates at the University are encouraged to participate in research. Faculty can work with the program to identify opportunities for undergraduates and recruit students to participate in their research projects.
  • Faculty Grants Management Program – All new faculty are encouraged to participate in workshops offered through the Faculty Grants Management Program. Their general workshop reviews the grants management process, including writing grant proposals, policies and procedures, the faculty investigator’s role and responsibility and services available to principal investigators.

Teaching Resources

  • University of Washington Teaching Academy – The Teaching Academy in the Office of Undergraduate Education is actually an assortment of programs available to UW faculty to improve instruction. In addition to the Faculty Fellows program for new faculty, the Teaching Academy sponsors the Provost’s Workshops on Teaching and Learning, the UW Collegium and the Institute for Teaching Excellence (ITE). The Provost’s Workshops on Teaching and Learning are one-day training events and are open to established UW faculty. During the summer quarter, faculty can apply to participate in the Institute for Teaching Excellence. The Institute takes place off campus and is a weeklong experience that allows faculty to work on improving their teaching and to engage in thoughtful discussions with colleagues across departments. The UW Collegium offers special programs and assistance to faculty who teach large classes.
  • Center for Instructional Development and Research – CIDR provides services to faculty members to help with the improvement and assessment of teaching and learning. They help faculty design courses, integrate active learning into their courses and assess their performance in the classroom. Tools used include microteaching, videotaping, and workshops.
  • Teaching@UW – A general teaching resource gateway. Of particular interest to faculty may be the instructional technology and media resources. See, for example, Catalyst, and Classroom Support Services (CSS).
  • Catalyst – The Center for Teaching, Learning & Technology provides resources for instructors who wish to use technology in their classes. Through the Catalyst Initiative, the Center offers innovative Web tools and a detailed web site with tips and guides for teaching with technology. The Center also offers a wide selection of workshops and one-to-one consulting. These services are free and available to all faculty and teaching assistants.

Resources for New Faculty

  • Faculty Field Tour – The UW Faculty Field Tour was initiated in 1998 to help new faculty become better acquainted with the State of Washington. Participants report that the tour provides a unique opportunity to learn about the State, visit the hometowns of UW students, and meet other new faculty members from different disciplines and UW campuses.
  • Faculty Fellows Program – This program focuses on excellence and serves as a one-week orientation program for new faculty members. Senior faculty members with distinguished teaching records serve as instructors and lead the orientation. Participants give brief, videotaped presentations, followed by supportive critiques by colleagues and senior faculty. Each cohort participates in social events and continues to meet throughout the academic year to discuss issues related to all aspects of academic life and to maintain collegiality.
  • Faculty Senate – The UW Faculty Senate is a crucial part of the University’s governance system. Issues as varied as salaries, faculty hiring policies and dispute resolution all fall within the purview of the Senate. In addition to the Faculty Handbook, the Senate has developed an online publication to introduce new faculty members to the issues of particular interest to faculty and to provide brief summaries of the policies, procedures, rules, and regulations in the Faculty Code.
  • Royalty Research Fund – Through the RRF, the Office of Research supports UW faculty seeking to establish new research programs. Two times each year, a portion of the license and royalty fees received from UW-developed intellectual property is distributed through competitive grant awards from the Royalty Research Fund (RRF). Proposal deadlines are the last Monday in September and the first Monday in March. New faculty often use RRF funds to obtain preliminary results for future grants proposals.
  • The Office of the Associate Vice Provost for Faculty Advancement is a point of contact and a resource for individual faculty members, in addition to deans, department chairs, and search committees.  Dr. Fraga, AVP for Faculty Advancement and Director of the Diversity Research Institute, is available to meet with current and prospective faculty members to consult on issues of faculty life at the UW. The Office of Faculty Advancement also holds regular workshops for underrepresented faculty on issues of promotion, tenure, and climate.  To schedule an appointment with this office,  please contact Alicia Palacio at 206-221-3958 or
  • The UW ADVANCE Program, which was created with a National Science Foundation ADVANCE Institutional Transformation award, originally focused on advancing women and underrepresented faculty members in STEM and has since expanded to the full College of Arts and Sciences, the Business School, School of Public Affairs, School of Law and the College of Education. UW ADVANCE facilitates the LCVI leadership workshops for chairs, hosts mentoring lunches for women faculty in STEM, and provides support to university efforts to recruit, retain and advance women and underrepresented faculty members in STEM fields.
  • The Q Center facilitates and enhances an open, safe, inclusive, and celebratory environment for bisexual, lesbian, gay, queer, Two-spirit, transgender, intersex, questioning, same-gender-loving, differently oriented, and allied students, faculty, and staff.

Work/Life Resources

  • Various policies and programs exist to support faculty work-life balance.  These include part-time tenure, tenure clock extension, and the transitional support program.  For additional details, please see Balance@UW
  • Work/Life Office – The University’s Work/Life Office provides consultation and referral to a variety of community and campus resources. All faculty, staff and students are eligible to access services as needed to balance their work and family responsibilities. The Work/Life Office provides information and material about childcare, elder care, flexible work options and other issues that impact individuals at any stage of their life cycle. A brochure is available on the Work/Life Office website.
  • Dual Career Partners – The number of dual career partners has increased nationally and is now a critical recruitment issue in higher education. The University of Washington has responded to the emergence of dual career partners by informally providing job assistance services to the partners of new employees who also seek faculty or professional positions in the Puget Sound area. Although the University does not guarantee employment for partners, every attempt is made to assist with placement. The Provost’s office maintains a list of academic human resources contacts at other colleges and universities in the region. A brochure on resources for dual career couples is also included in the next section on Miscellaneous Resources. Also, the ADVANCE Center for Institutional Change has developed a list of recommendations for facilitating Dual Career Hires.
  • Hometown Home Loan Program for UW Employees – The Hometown Home Loan program was initiated at the University of Washington in February 1999. Its program of guaranteed reduced fees on mortgages is available to permanent UW employees buying or refinancing anywhere in the Puget Sound region. Depending on location and household characteristics, additional programs of down payment assistance and interest rate reductions are also available.

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