Rice Retiree Benefits
Being a retiree of Rice carries with it some valuable benefits. To determine if you are eligible to be a Rice retiree, the tab below lists some policy details, including Rice’s retiree definition and some benefits of being considered a Rice retiree. You may also read the University Policy for Rice Retirees here.
Retirees are individuals who leave the University's employ at the conclusion of a minimum of ten consecutive years of benefits-eligible service and for whom the sum of age and length of service is at least 65.
Being a retiree of Rice University entitles an individual to certain benefits and privileges that may change from time to time. Examples of such privileges are:
- Participation at their cost in the University Medical Plans for the retiree and dependents covered at the time of retirement according to conditions set by the insurance carriers and the University
- The opportunity to audit courses at Rice and remission of tuition for dependents as provided by the relevant policies
- Membership in the Faculty Club, with approval of the Faculty Club Board
- Use of Gymnasium facilities, with the approval of the Department of Human Performance and Health Science
- Rice University "Faculty/Staff, Retired" identification cards for the retiree and spouse
- Book check out privileges at Fondren Library with Rice University "Faculty/Staff, Retired" identification card
- Special rates on season tickets to Rice athletic events as issued by the Athletic Department
- University Faculty/Staff Directory listing under the appropriate heading
- Regular faculty/staff discounts on non-credit School of Continuing Studies courses
- Access to the Internet and e-mail with a Rice account according to established procedures in Information Technology
Retirees who have served 20 years or more or deceased faculty and staff who meet the same criterion are further recognized by a tree planted on campus and dedicated in their honor. Covered dependents of deceased employees who would have qualified for retiree benefits may continue purchasing Rice group health insurance coverage as dependents of deceased retirees.
One highly valued benefit of being a retiree is free parking in any lot on Rice campus! This makes it easy for you to maintain academic and social connections with the University when you retire. Once you retire, you will need to go to the Parking Office to have your parking access card re-coded for retiree status. You will also receive a new sticker for your car. Please note that parking is made available strictly to those retirees who wish to maintain a relationship with the campus and to participate in campus intellectual and social life. This is not intended for regular daily parking, for example, to allow a former employee to have free parking pursuant to employment in The Texas Medical Center.
Many university tuition benefits apply to Rice retirees. You can find out more about them under the Tuition Benefits portion of this website.
Rice’s retiree health plans are the same plans offered to active employees, but with different premium costs associated. To view the current premium rates, please visit the Retiree Rates page. If you have questions about your retiree coverage, Aetna concierge can help you just like they help active employees. You can reach them at 1-800-905-7670. Rice retirees enrolled in our plans have an annual enrollment period every year, just as active faculty and staff have. This is typically held in May of each year, with changes effective July 1.
If you did not elect to enroll in retiree benefits within 30 days of your retirement from the university, you have missed the opportunity to enroll, and you may NOT enroll at a later date. If you decide to drop the Rice retirement plan at a later date, you will not be permitted to re-join the plan.
While the Rice retiree health plan provides comprehensive coverage, it may or may not be the best choice for you, especially if you are Medicare eligible when you retire. We encourage you to think carefully about your coverage options at the time you retire because your options may be limited at a later date. There are many good Medicare Supplements on the open market that are designed to work well with your Medicare Parts A and B. We encourage you to fine a Medicare expert to assist you in your decision making. We do not endorse anyone in particular, but can share resources with you used by other Rice employees and for whom we received good feedback. For more information, contact a member of the benefits team.
You should begin your retiree medical coverage options exploration at least 3 months ahead of your retirement date. This includes contacting Medicare and Social Security to initiate their processes.
You may want to continue to volunteer at Rice and stay involved with students. Here are Rice-affiliated volunteer opportunities.
We, of course, have a lot of exciting sports on campus (and away), so be sure to stay on top of Rice Athletics.
Do you need to update your address or other contact information at Rice? Be sure to call Human Resources at 713-648-2232 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you wish to receive the "ALLDEPTS" email that is sent out to faculty and staff, click here and follow the steps to enroll. These emails often contain information on free lectures and events at Rice.
While functionality is limited, retirees can still log in to ESTHER. If you have problems accessing ESTHER, please read below.
Please go to http://esther.rice.edu and enter your employee ID (this can be found on your ID card – be sure to use a capital "E"), and your PIN is a 6-digit code.
If you cannot remember your PIN, enter your employee ID and then click the "Forgot PIN?" button. This should open up your security question — if you can answer the question correctly, you will get in to Esther. Be sure to update your PIN once you log in.
If you still cannot get access to Esther through the "Forgot PIN?" button, e-mail HR Services or the Benefits Team (or call x2363). We can reset your PIN for you.
Be sure to update your personal security question and answer once logged in so you can let yourself in next time!
If you have any additional questions, please contact a member of Human Resources.