Policy 1318
Emeritus Staff

Date of Current Revision: January 2017
Primary Responsible Officer: Director of Human Resources


James Madison University recognizes the important contributions to the institution that have been made by staff members who rendered many years of dedicated service before retirement. This policy is designed to provide procedures for the appointment of emeritus status for staff members at the university.


The Board of Visitors has been authorized by the Commonwealth of Virginia to govern James Madison University. See Code of Virginia § 23.1-1600. The Board has delegated the authority to manage the university to the president.


The person who initiates a recommendation that a staff member be granted emeritus status. Nominators should be director or unit head or above.

Staff Member
For the purposes of this policy, a person who is categorized as a full-time classified employee.


This policy applies to all emeritus staff appointments at the university.


In appropriate cases, retired staff members may be recognized by the award of emeritus staff status. Emeritus staff status is a privilege and not a right, and is awarded by the president at the discretion of the university. No staff member is entitled to emeritus status.


6.1 Eligibility
A retired staff member is eligible for appointment to emeritus staff status if the individual:

  • has been an active, full-time classified employee for a minimum of 10 years at James Madison University
  • has retired in good standing
  • has a record of noteworthy contributions throughout his or her JMU career

6.2 Privileges
An emeritus staff member has many of the same rights and privileges to use university facilities and to participate in university activities as an active staff member. These may include, but are not limited to the following:

  • a JACard
  • a parking permit
  • an email account
  • bookstore discounts
  • on-campus waiver of tuition
  • option to purchase a university meal plan
  • participation in appropriate university events
  • use of recreational facilities
  • use of libraries

Use of or access to these services is determined at the discretion of the service provider.

Emeritus staff members do not normally receive remuneration, although they may be hired by the university on a part-time basis for a limited time. Emeritus staff members who are not employed by the university will have affiliate status. See Policy 1337 - Affiliates.

Retiring staff members who have been granted emeritus status will be eligible for membership in the James Madison University Staff Emeriti Association.

6.3 Procedures for Appointment
Nominations for appointments to emeritus status are made by the appropriate unit head or director through the dean or AVP and the appropriate vice president, to the president. Emeritus appointments are made upon the recommendation by the president. 

6.3.1 Nominator contacts Human Resources to confirm staff member’s eligibility. 

6.3.2 A separation ePAR must be submitted to Human Resources prior to completing the Recommendation for Emeritus Status form. Nominator completes the Recommendation for Emeritus Status form online and submits to his or her vice president after confirming eligibility and states reasons for nominating the staff member.

6.3.3 Vice president approves the Recommendation for Emeritus Status form by signing it and submitting the form to the president’s office for approval or denies the request by sending the request form back to the nominator indicating denial. 

6.3.4 If approved: The president’s office verifies hire date, retirement date and address of staff member with Human Resources. The president’s office types the letter of approval and submits it to the president for signature.

When denied: The nomination form is returned by the president’s office to the vice president, indicating denial. The vice president notifies the nominator, who notifies the nominee.

6.3.5 Once the status has been approved by the president and the nominating office has received the copy of the letter, that office submits the Affiliate Service Request form to Payroll Services for emeritus status. The date of retirement is the effective date to be used on the form. 

6.3.6 Payroll Services designates the person as emeritus in the PeopleSoft system after receiving the Affiliate Service Request form submitted for the retiring staff member by the nominating department.

  • Emeritus requests will not be processed until a separation ePAR has been processed by Payroll and entered into the PeopleSoft system.

6.4 Timing
A nomination for emeritus status may be submitted in anticipation of an employee’s retirement to ensure the employee’s timely transition to affiliate status without loss of services. The date of the employee’s retirement must appear on the nomination form. Employees may be nominated up to six months in advance of, or up to one year beyond, their actual retirement date.

6.5 Duration of Appointment
Emeritus status is normally granted on a permanent basis; however, emeritus status may be removed by the university at any time for any reason, and an emeritus staff member has no legitimate expectation for the status to be continued.

6.6 Removal of Appointment
Emeritus appointments may be removed at any time at the discretion of the university. A recommendation to remove emeritus status may be made by the appropriate vice president to the president in appropriate instances.

6.6.1 If the president approves the recommendation for removal of emeritus status, a letter will be sent to the staff member indicating the removal of emeritus status.

6.6.2 A copy of the notification letter will be sent to the original nominating department, at which time that department will complete an Affiliate Service Request to terminate the employee’s emeriti services.


The nominator is responsible for contacting Human Resources to confirm the staff member’s eligibility and for submitting a separation ePAR. The nominator is responsible for submitting the Recommendation for Emeritus Status form to the appropriate vice president. Upon receiving a copy of the president’s letter, the nominator is responsible for submitting the Affiliate Service Request form.

Vice presidents are responsible for approving or denying the recommendation for emeritus status. Vice presidents are also responsible for submitting the form to the president’s office for further approval or for sending the form back to the nominator indicating denial.

The president’s office is responsible for verifying employment details with Human Resources. The president’s office is also responsible for typing the letter of approval and obtaining the president’s signature, or when denied, for returning the nomination form to the vice president.  

Human Resources is responsible for verifying eligibility for all nominations for emeritus staff.

Payroll Services is responsible for designating the person as emeritus in the PeopleSoft system.




This policy does not apply to full-time or part-time instructional or administrative & professional faculty, wage employees or other part-time employees. This policy does not apply to emeritus faculty. See Policy 2105 - Emeritus Faculty.


The authority to interpret this policy rests with the president and is generally delegated to the director of human resources.

Previous Version: April 2016
Approved by the President: April 2016

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