Student Employee Retirement Benefits
As a new graduate or undergraduate student employee, you have 30 days from your date of hire to take action on your retirement benefits.
Student Retirement Options
Employees (including student employees) of Ohio public institutions do not participate in the federal Social Security system, other than to contributions to Medicare. Instead, Ohio State employees contribute to the state’s retirement system, Ohio Public Employees Retirement System (OPERS). As an Ohio State student employee, you have the option to remain a participant in OPERS or you may be eligible to opt out of contributing to OPERS. For additional information on OPERS, visit OPERS.org.
|I want to participate in OPERS
|I want to opt-out of participation in OPERS
You must have a 365-day break from student employment with Ohio State in order to change your retirement election. Once reemployed in a student role after the 365 day break, you will receive another 30-day window to reapply for a student OPERS exemption. If you do not submit an OPERS exemption request, your retirement elections cannot be adjusted.
You have 30 days from your hire date to submit your exemption request to OPERS. Paper forms should not be used after July 1, 2021.
Step 1: OPERS sends a unique link to your e-mail and/or by text message
Step 2: Visit OPERS website via unique link to submit exemption request
Step 3: OPERS notifies Ohio State of approved exemption request
For the exemption to be in effect, a student must have an approved exemption request and meet the minimum course credit hours listed below:
When you work during a term in which you are not taking classes, or are enrolled but do not meet the credit hour minimum, you automatically contribute to OPERS during that period.
|Credit Hour Minimum
|6 credit hours
|GAA, GRA or GTA students
|4 credit hours
|Post-candidacy doctoral students
|2 credit hours
A Graduate Teaching Associate (GTA) with a previously established State Teachers Retirement System (STRS) account is required to contribute to STRS instead of OPERS, unless he or she submits an exemption form within the first 30 days of the GTA appointment. Previously established STRS accounts typically exist if one was a Lecture for Ohio State, or other state university, or if they taught at a public school in Ohio. If you wish to exempt from both STRS and OPERS as a GTA, you must complete the STRS exemption form and the OPERS student exemption request.
|I want to participate in STRS
|I want to opt-out of participation in OPERS/STRS
If you would like to save additional money for your retirement, you may enroll in a Supplemental Retirement Account (SRA).