Optional Retirement Plan (ORP)

Faculty members are eligible to choose between TRS and the ORP within 30 days of hire into an eligible position. 

Non-academic officers and senior administrators are eligible to choose between PERS and ORP within 30 days of hire into an eligible position.

Please note that these decisions are irrevocable. For more information about these plans, please review the Retirement Decision Guide

  • Employee contributes 8%
  • Employer contributes 12%
  • 3 year cliff vesting for employer contributions; employees are 100% vested in their own contributions 
    • 0-3 calendar years of service not vested
    • 3 + calendar years of service fully vested

New employees must complete the following forms: 

  • Retirement Plan Notification Form
  • Retirement Plan Election Form 
  • Fund Sponsor Enrollment/Change Form

After attending New Employee Orientation you will receive these documents via Docusign to complete. You have 30 days from your date of hire to complete them. If you do not receive them after your orientation, please contact ua-benefits@alaska.edu

If no decision is made within the 30 day window, employees will be defaulted into TRS or PERS, whichever is applicable. 

To manage your ORP, you'll need to contact your fund sponsor directly or login to your online account. The following fund sponsors manage the University's ORP: 

Fidelity Lincoln National TIAA VALIC

Fidelity Investments
P.O. Box 770001 
Cincinnati, OH 45277-0037

Pre-Login Site

Lincoln Financial Group
P.O. Box 21008
Greensboro, NC 27420-1008
P.O. Box 1259
Charlotte, NC 28201
P.O. BOX 15648 
Amarillo, TX 79105-5648
(800) 343-0860

(800) 348-1212

Anchorage - 561-3187

Fairbanks - 452-6393

(800) 842-2776

(800) 448-2542

Anchorage - 279-8302

Fairbanks - 458-0101

You may change fund sponsors at any time using the Fund Sponsor Enrollment/Change formOnce submitted, the change will affect where new contributions are deposited and will not automatically transfer account balances.  An employee may also keep the accounts separate or consolidate accounts. To combine funds the employee will need to contact the previous fund sponsor and request a rollover form  to transfer the balance from the previous fund sponsor to the new fund sponsor.


It is the employee's responsibility to maintain accurate beneficiary records with their managing fund sponsor. Contact your managing fund sponsor or login to your account to update/review your beneficiary designations.

It is important to note that employees will see two accounts on their statements. The employee contributions are put into a 403(b) tax-deferred annuity and the employer contributions are put into a 401(a). 

To avoid additional tax penalties, it is recommended to wait to withdraw your retirement account until you have reached age 59-1/2.

No withdrawals can be made from your account until 45 days after you quit working. Once this waiting period has been observed, you will have different options to choose how you receive your account balance. Contact your fund sponsor directly to discuss these options. 

For additional information, review the Retirement Checklist, Exit Guide, or contact ua-benefits@alaska.edu

If you have retired or separated from the University and wish to complete a distribution, withdrawal, or rollover you will need Plan Sponsor approval. Please follow the instructions below to obtain that. 

Send the form to UA for employer authorization. You can fax it to (907) 450-8201, upload it to Spoke (ua.askspoke.com), or mail it to UA Human Resources, PO Box 755140, Fairbanks AK 99775-5140. We'll complete the employer part and forward it on to the fund sponsor.

Need help? Contact ua-hr@alaska.edu for assistance with distribution, withdrawal, and rollover requests.