CWURP – Faculty & Administrative Exempt Staff
With the CWU Retirement Plan (CWURP), each dollar contributed is fully matched by Central, and funds may be selected with the help of Fidelity Investments, the nation’s largest investment management firm and provider of workplace retirement plans. As a 403(b) defined contribution plan, your tax-deferred contributions lower your taxes today and allow your investments to grow tax free until retirement. All the money in your account, including matching funds, is immediately vested, which means it’s yours to keep wherever your career takes you.
Login to your account to learn more, enroll online, or schedule a consultation with a Fidelity Representative.
Faculty and administrative exempt staff working at least 50 percent of full time in an eligible appointment for at least 6 months are eligible to participate in the CWURP. If eligibility criteria are met, participation in a retirement plan is required as a condition of employment. Within 30 days of eligibility, a choice is available between the CWURP and Plan 3 of the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems TRS (faculty) or PERS (exempt).
Submit your choice of retirement plans to Human Resources within 30 days of eligibility using the Central Washington University Retirement Plan Election form. Set up your online account with Fidelity to select investments and designate beneficiaries. If no selection is made, enrollment will be defaulted into the CWURP.
Every dollar you contribute to the CWURP is fully matched by CWU. This doubles the amount you’re saving for retirement. Contribution rates are a percentage of gross salary, based on age, as shown below. View contributions and matching contributions by accessing your CWURP account online.
Contribution Rate Age 5% of gross salary under age 35 7.5% of gross salary age 35 - 49 10% of gross salary age 50 and above
- Investment Options
Whether you’re a hands-on investor or you prefer a simpler target-date fund, with the CWURP you’ll find funds that match your investing style and goals. Better yet, you don’t have to be an expert to figure out which option is best for you. Get started by reviewing the CWURP plan details and investment options and then receive in-person guidance by meeting with a Fidelity representative.
- IRS Contribution Limits
A big part of successfully saving for retirement is knowing how your retirement plan affects your taxes. Each year, the IRS sets contribution limits for 403(b) retirement plans. While generous, make sure your retirement contributions don’t exceed them. If you have both a CWURP and Voluntary Investment Program (VIP) account, you need to make sure the combined total of all contributions (including the employer match) from both plans don’t exceed the IRS annual limits as both are 403(b) plans and the IRS combines all your 403(b) plans for your annual limit. The 2023 combined limit is $66,000, and for those at least age 50 it is $73,500. This limit includes all CWURP contributions, the CWU matching amounts, and all contributions made to the VIP Traditional and Roth.
VIP Limit: Additionally, there is a limit on your elective contributions to the Voluntary Investment Plan (VIP), a supplemental retirement account which it not matched by CWU. The 2023 limit is $22,500, and for those at least age 50 it is $30,000.
- Leaving Before Retirement
When your employment at CWU ends, you keep all funds in your retirement plan including the matching funds that CWU contributed. You have the option to keep your funds in your CWURP account or transfer them to another eligible retirement plan through a direct rollover. Contact Fidelity to transfer funds. You may withdraw your funds completely, but in addition to decreasing your retirement savings, the IRS requires income tax and an early distribution tax be paid.
Full retirement may occur the last day of the month in which age 65 is attained. Early retirement may occur the last day of the month in which age 55 is attained with ten or more years of service or age 62 is attained.
Visit the Getting Ready to Retire webpage for steps in preparing for your retirement and information on retirement eligibility and signing up for retiree health insurance.
The University provides educational information and tools to help you make choices that suit your individual goals. The University cannot provide investment advice to employees. If there are any discrepancies between this website and the provisions of the CWURP, the Plan Document will prevail.
This page contains links to websites outside of www.cwu.edu. The views and opinions expressed on unofficial pages of Central Washington University faculty, staff or students are strictly those of the page authors. The content of such pages has not been reviewed or approved by Central Washington University.