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Working at UD News and Information

Jan. 19, 2021

News you need

COVID-19 testing

All faculty, staff and postdocs who will be coming to campus regularly are required to complete a COVID-19 test before returning to campus this year or, if necessary, during your first week back. After that initial test, you do not need to be tested again until further notice, as long as you do not experience COVID symptoms and the Daily Health Screening Form indicates you’re cleared to be on campus. This testing may be completed at UD surveillance testing sites or elsewhere, such as a health care center or testing site offered by the state or county. If you get a test at a non-UD site, you must upload the results to UD Human Resources.

Surveillance testing–open to all students and essential faculty and staff–is available on Mondays and Wednesdays this month at both Harker Lab (9 a.m.-noon) and Clayton Hall (10 a.m.-1 p.m.). Registration is strongly encouraged and may be completed online: Harker Lab and Clayton Hall. Please note that walk-ups are also welcome, with arrival at least 30 minutes before the testing site closes. All individuals who plan to be tested at the University’s testing centers must complete the COVID-19 Daily Health Screening Form and bring the results with them.

As we approach the beginning of the spring semester, more information about testing, vaccinations and other measures will be shared. Please remember, you must always follow all safety protocols, including face coverings and physical distancing.

Retirement contribution limits for 2021

The contribution limits for the University’s 403(b) Retirement Savings Plan and the 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan remain unchanged for the 2021 calendar year. The 2021 contribution limit is $19,500 for each plan. This limit increases to $26,000 if you are age 50 or over by the end of the 2021 calendar year. To review or increase your contribution amount, visit the benefits web page and select “403(b) Retirement Log In” in the Frequent Sites box. Once in your account, select 'actions,' 'contributions' and continue through the prompts.

Performance appraisals

It’s that time of year again: Performance appraisals are coming up soon. The appraisal process provides a written record of an employee's major job duties, goals and competencies, as well as the supervisor's assessment of performance. The goal is to improve job understanding, encourage effective performance and establish goals that support unit and career development. In the upcoming weeks, we will provide additional information regarding dates and expectations.

Flexible Spending Account (FSA) grace period extended

The COVID-19 Relief bill has enabled the University to extend the normal grace period for those enrolled in 2020 Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA). Normally there is a 2.5-month grace period that allows participants to continue incurring expenses. For the 2020 plan year, that grace period has been extended by 12 months to Dec. 31, 2021, allowing you an additional year to incur claims for unused funds in your health and dependent care FSAs. At the end of the grace period, any remaining unused balances will be forfeited, per IRS regulations. Additionally, the maximum age of eligible dependents for day care purposes will be increased to 13 years (rather than 12) for the 2021 plan year only. Learn more about FSAs including eligible expenses and how to submit a claim.


UD WorkForce updates and enhancements

Since going live with the new UD WorkForce system in September 2020, the UD WorkForce team has been working to deliver numerous updates and enhancements. Learn more.

TIAA virtual counseling sessions

Access virtual TIAA counseling by phone or on any device and learn about your retirement savings, managing debt and your investment strategy. Meetings are highly secure and private. Schedule a virtual counseling session.

Professional development virtual info sessions Jan. 19-21

A variety of education opportunities are available to employees through UD’s Division of Professional and Continuing Studies, including many programs eligible for UD fee waivers or employee discounts. Learn more about spring programs at the free virtual info sessions Jan. 19-21, or take advantage of academic advisement and career counseling by emailing


New Employee Assistance Program

As of Jan. 1, our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is now being provided through ComPsych® GuidanceResources®. This is a free program available exclusively for State of Delaware Group Health Plan non-Medicare members and their dependents. Those not eligible to enroll in the Group Health Plan will have access through March 2021. EAP can help with a wide variety of work and life issues.

Spring Book Club

The Office of Institutional Equity, Diversity and Inclusions popular book club is returning for Spring 2021, when the selection will be White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide by Carol Anderson. Participants will meet virtually on three separate occasions throughout the spring semester, beginning in late February. Registration is available now.

Save the date

I Heart UD Giving Day will be on May 5, 2021. Now is the time to consider if your college, department or unit has a project or program to promote on UD’s largest digital fundraising day of the year. The application for fundraising projects will be available in the beginning of February at Contact Julie Donohue with any questions related to I Heart UD Giving Day.

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This email is approved by Jared Aupperle, Interim Vice President for Human Resources