Human Resources FAQs

403(b) Plan FAQs

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When will university contributions to 403(b) plans be suspended?

The university contribution to 403(b) plans stopped as of July 1, 2020. 

What actions should I take?

The suspension of Marquette’s contributions to the 403(b) plan will take place automatically and you do not need to do anything. However, you may wish to review your retirement plan account and potentially adjust your own employee contribution. The IRS annual contribution limit on employee contributions to the 403(b) plans is $19,500 per year (for 2020). If you are age 50 or older, you may also be eligible to make “catch-up” contributions, up to an additional $6,500, in 2020.

When will the match resume?

The university will resume the match as soon as possible, once our financial situation has stabilized. While it is difficult to predict the future impact of COVID-19 on the University, the current plan is to resume the match for fiscal year 2021-22.


Human Resources FAQs

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When do I need to submit a request for COVID-19 temporary alternative work arrangements for Spring 2021?

September 25 is the deadline for submitting a temporary alternative work arrangement for Spring 2021. More information is available on Marquette Today. Please note that this information only pertains to academic faculty, staff and student employees (e.g. those who work in a college).

Do I need to have direct deposit?

Yes. All Marquette University employees (full-time, part-time, students, etc.) have payroll payments disbursed through direct deposit to the financial institution of the employee's choice. Direct deposit is available in any financial institution throughout the United States anxd Puerto Rico.

If you do not currently have direct deposit set up, please review the information here and sign up immediately.

Does the extension of remote learning impact the work-from-home mandate?

Remote working continues for faculty and staff. The university will continue to monitor the situation and follow guidance from state and local authorities.

Can we still hire for open positions?

Our primary focus is our care and concern for existing faculty and staff. Only those positions that must be filled immediately due to operational continuity or that are targeted to be filled for the summer or fall 2020 semesters will be posted during this time.

Will this affect merit increases?

The university is pausing the previously communicated all-university merit increases that were planned to take effect during the 2020–21 academic year.

How does the CARES Act affect Marquette?

Congress recently passed the “Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security” (CARES) Act, which contained several provisions relevant to participants in Marquette’s 403(b) retirement plan. Learn more about how this affects Marquette University employees.

Will health benefits cover coronavirus testing?

UnitedHealthcare, including UMR, has a team of experts closely monitoring COVID-19. As with any public health issue, they are working with and following all guidance and protocols issued by the CDC, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and state and local public health departments to support all employees. UMR is in constant communication with Marquette for COVID-19 updates and how they impact employees.

What this means for you
If you are experiencing symptoms, or think you might have been exposed to COVID-19, please call your health provider right away.

Free access to testing
If you meet the CDC guidelines for testing, and it is requested by your doctor, all costs for COVID-19 testing will be waived. In addition, costs are waived for visits associated with COVID-19 testing – whether the testing is done in a physician’s office, telehealth visit, an urgent care center or an emergency department – in or out of network. If you have coverage questions on testing, testing locations, treatments or anything else, please call the number on your health plan ID card.

Talk to your health care provider about telehealth
In response to COVID-19 and to allow faster support and to reduce exposure to the virus, telehealth services for medical and behavioral health are available through the plan until June 18, 2020, and will then be further evaluated by UMR.

Expenses for telehealth services related to all other non-COVID-19 general conditions will be subject to normal plan benefits and based on in/out of network status, which would include member co-pay, deductible and coinsurance responsibility. Note that this additional telehealth coverage expands on Marquette’s current Teledoc services in order to provide continuity of care.

For more information, contact HR Benefits at (414) 288-7305 or

What is the Employee Emergency Grant Fund?

Due to the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the university had to make the difficult decision to furlough some employees last month. Many members of the Marquette community have inquired about making contributions to provide additional financial support to furloughed employees. In response, the university has created an Employee Emergency Grant Fund (link when live) to support furloughed employees. To maximize the support of furloughed employees, contributions to the fund must be received by May 31. Donate at

Because all funds raised will be received in quarter four of fiscal year 2020, this fund will remain available through fiscal year 2021. This account will be closed at the end of fiscal year 2021. At the time the account is closed, any funds remaining in the account will be transferred to the Bridge to the Future Scholarship Fund, which provides financial aid assistance to students whose changing economic circumstances jeopardize their ability to continue their Marquette education.

The fund was created through a partnership between University Advancement, Human Resources, Staff Senate, Office of Finance and Office of the General Counsel. The Chairs of Academic Senate and Staff Senate and a representative from Human Resources are also actively involved with this fund as members of the committee that evaluates decisions about grants from the Employee Emergency Fund account.

What is the President’s Challenge for COVID-19 response?

In partnership with American Family Insurance, Marquette University has announced a special President’s Challenge to address needs in Milwaukee’s community that have been created or magnified by the COVID-19 pandemic.

American Family joins the ongoing support of Johnson Controls Foundation in developing this grant program, which provides funding for interdisciplinary teams of faculty, staff and students from the Marquette community for innovative and collaborative work that represents critical areas in the community’s recovery efforts. Partnerships with community organizations are highly encouraged from the ideation phase through the development of the proposal.

The President’s Challenge will support proposals with up to $50,000 of grant funding for one year and will be selected from each of the following focus areas:

  • Mental health and wellness
  • Economic revitalization
  • Health services

Learning communities will be launched in each of the focus areas. Faculty, staff, students and community partners are invited to form teams around emerging proposal topics within the learning communities. Information on submitting a proposal, as well as timelines and updates for the program are available on the President’s Challenge website, hosted by Marquette’s Office of Research and Innovation.

Are there modifications to the vacation policy?

Employees can continue to request vacation time with supervisor approval. Remote or on-campus workers need time away or time to unplug from work. The current university vacation policy has not been changed. Employees in a paid status continue to accrue vacation. Non-exempt employees will continue to accrue vacation until their yearly maximum is reached. Exempt employees will need to use vacation time prior to June 30, 2020 and the new fiscal year vacation allotment will be loaded into vacation banks on July 1, 2020. Any changes to the vacation policy are cost prohibitive and not financially viable at a time when the university’s resources are already limited.

Who do we notify if we have underlying medical conditions?

Your underlying health condition may fall under the Americans with Disability Act (ADA). Please contact the department of human resources for further direction at

How will Marquette address the health and safety of its faculty, staff and students when they return to campus?

The university’s Recovery Plan calls for detailed protocols to protect everyone’s health and safety, including, but not limited to enforced social distancing practices, masks and other personal protective equipment, screening and testing procedures, strict visitor policies, regular and deep cleaning of facilities and equipment, etc. More specific information will be released to the Marquette community as the Recovery Plan is developed further.

I don’t feel comfortable coming back to campus when my job can be done remotely — will I have to prove an underlying medical condition to be approved to work from home?

The university’s Recovery Plan includes a COVID-19 focused human resources policy. Employees who feel uneasy about their risk of contracting COVID-19 should address their specific concerns based on fact — not just a generalized fear of contracting COVID-19 — with their supervisor or HR. Employees with an underlying health condition that may increase the risk of illness due to COVID-19 can submit a request for an accommodation under the Americans with Disability Act.

How are you keeping the furloughed members of campus informed?

Recordings of the Town Hall Meetings are published on the university’s coronavirus response website, and the website also has a number of resources and frequently asked questions that furloughed employees can access. In addition, HR sends emails to furloughed employees to keep them informed.

What does ELT stand for?

The ELT is the university’s Executive Leadership Team which includes President Lovell, Provost Ah Yun and Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Joel Pogodzinski.

How will MU accommodate employees who are at significant risk from COVID-19, but whose situations might not rise to the level of an ADA disability?

The university’s Recovery Plan includes a COVID-19 focused human resources policy. Employees who feel uneasy about their risk of contracting COVID-19 should address their specific concerns based on fact — not just a generalized fear of contracting COVID-19 — with their supervisor or HR. Employees with an underlying health condition that may increase the risk of illness due to COVID-19 can submit a request for an accommodation under the Americans with Disability Act.

Will special flexibility be provided to employees with young children at home and no available childcare options due to school and summer camp closures?

The availability of temporary alternative work arrangements will be based on college/business needs of the university, and in consideration of the essential functions required for specific jobs/positions. For consideration, an employee should complete the COVID-19 Temporary Alternative Work Arrangement Request Form. Any approved arrangements will be made for a specific duration and will be periodically reassessed to ensure ongoing effectiveness and the ability to provide essential services to our students and university community. Alternatively, an employee may choose to use accrued vacation hours or their floating holiday if the work area is able to accommodate their absence from work. If the employee’s vacation/floating holiday balance has been exhausted, and/or if the work area is unable to accommodate their absence from work, the employee may request an unpaid leave of absence.

With the change in the fall semester ending earlier and the spring semester starting later, will there likely be another round of furloughs during December-January or a variation of furlough weeks across staff and faculty as a means of saving additional money?

The academic calendar has been taken into consideration in our known enrollment risks. That said, any additional campus disruption or a move to remote learning would create additional risk for the university and may result in further cost-saving measures.

If staff wish to work from home indefinitely/until spring 2021, is that an option?

Campus leaders will make strategic decisions about which roles need to be on campus and which roles can continue to work remotely. Efforts must be focused on achieving in person learning for our students, pursuing research, and meeting enrollment goals while keeping our commitment to protecting the health, safety, and well-being of our students, faculty, staff and visitors. Staff that interface directly with students, prospective students or serve in an MU clinic need presence on campus.

Are new policies/procedures being developed for the Fall 2020 semester for undergraduate student employment? Do we anticipate financial hurdles to affect the employment of undergraduate students, similar to what happened during this Spring semester?

Very generally, the reduction in student employment was linked to health and safety and non-essential work, or work that no longer existed. As that work returns as we return to campus, we expect that student employment will exist.

Will tuition remission for faculty dependents be affected?

With the unprecedented risks we are encountering, all actions are on the table for consideration. That said, we do not anticipate adjusting this policy in the short-term.

Will some employees continue working from home as a way to save money?

Employees who are working from home continue to receive their wages, and are not a cost savings measure. Those employees who are furloughed will return to work (virtually or on campus) when their work returns.

Have you considered adjusting work schedules where possible rather than just reducing wages?

Yes, we are considering all potential actions including adjusting work schedules.

If wages are cut, will those cuts be permanent?

If a wage reduction strategy is employed, the expectation is that they will be temporary in nature. As we navigate the changing environment, any unknown risks that arise may impact the timing and depth of those reductions.

Are mandatory, across-the-board furloughs being considered?

For any future financial actions that need to be taken by the university, athletics will also be impacted. This will include coaches and administrators.

Are buyouts for those close to retirement being looked at?

This strategy is on the table, however the last time this was modeled it did not result in university gains.

Is upper administration taking pay cuts amidst the COVID-19 pandemic?

Yes. President Michael Lovell, Provost Kimo Ah Yun and Senior Vice President Joel Pogodzinski are taking voluntary 10% salary reductions. Additionally, the entire University Leadership Council, as well as the head men’s and women’s basketball coaches, are taking 5% pay cuts.

If a person is experiencing COVID-like symptoms and is directed to stay home according to the health screening questions, can staff work remotely instead of using sick time if they are well enough to work?

Yes, if that employee is able to work remotely (exempt or non-exempt) and perform their job functions from home, they can work remotely. We also encourage people to stay home if they feel sick or have any COVID-related symptoms. The employee sub-committee of the COVID-19 Response Team is hosting regular office hours where these sorts of questions can be asked in a smaller group. Watch Marquette Today for the schedule and more information.

The policy says we can work from home if our job allows it, but what if we are being told that I can’t do my job from home? Will there be an evaluation of each person’s responsibilities to determine what positions/work need to be on campus?

While the university has standard guidance for everyone regarding certain protocols (i.e., those on campus must social distance, wear a mask, etc.), specific instruction regarding who can work from home and whose jobs really require them to be on campus should be determined by each ULC leader, as they best know their area’s needs. I’d recommend talking to your supervisor first, then working with your ULC leader.

Is there a timeline for daycare reopening so that employees who rely on it can return to work on campus?

A recently conducted survey with parents, along with guidance form the city and state health departments, will inform decisions about opening. There is possibility of an early August opening, but the details are still being determined and depend on the facilities’ team’s ability to work on the space.

When will furloughed employees return?

University leaders will bring back furloughed employees from their area as work ramps up to full-time capacity for those positions in that area. Approximately one-third of furloughed employees have returned to work.



Non-exempt Employee FAQs

Exempt Employee FAQs

Student Employee FAQs