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2011 Best Employers

Cornell University

Work toward college degree credits as an employee with this institution.

Winning Years:  2011, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005
Industry: Education, post-secondary
Location: Ithaca, N.Y.

Cornell University's Encore Cornell Program provides retirees with employment opportunities, volunteer opportunities, an opportunity to give back to Cornell, as well as resource and enrichment opportunities.

See Also: How the 2011 Best Employers winners were selected.

The Encore Cornell Program has four components: Encore Hire, which connects retirees with temporary employment opportunities within Cornell and the community; Encore Volunteer, which connects retirees with volunteer opportunities within Cornell and their local community; Encore On-Call, which provides retirees the opportunity to share their expertise with members of the Cornell community on a short-term basis; and Encore and More, which provides retirees with information on resources, classes and events to support personal growth and development.

Additional Policies and Practices:

Recruiting: Senior placement agencies are utilized to target mature workers and retirees.  
Workplace Culture/Continued Opportunities: Employees working 20 or more hours per week are offered tuition reimbursement, certification classes, in-house classroom training, online training and Extramural Studies. The Extramural Studies program offers employees the benefit of taking any Cornell class not leading to any degree tuition-free. In addition, full-time employees in the Employee Degree Program who are accepted into Cornell can take classes tuition-free toward degree credit.  

Long-service anniversaries are celebrated with announcements, parties and awards.  

In response to feedback from employee surveys, long-term care insurance was added as an employee benefit, a better communication system with retirees was implemented, and Cornell created a position for and hired a Dependent Care Consultant to assist faculty and staff with finding resources and information to better support their caregiving responsibilities.

Employees have opportunities to gain new experience by working on temporary assignments in other departments, on team projects and by participating in a formal job rotation program.  

Cornell's Disability Accommodation Policy provides employees with equipment and job modifications, the option of moving from full-time to part-time status, individualized flexible work schedules, private areas where diabetics can check blood sugar levels and special equipment for those with visual or audio impairment. Ergonomic improvements are implemented when needed.
Benefits/Health: Employees working 20 or more hours per week receive individual and family medical and prescription drug coverage, individual and family vision and dental insurance, individual and family long-term care insurance, as well as long-term disability. Full- and part-time employees also receive short-term disability.  

Health benefits for retirees  include individual and spouse medical and drug coverage, individual and spouse vision coverage, individual and spouse long term care insurance, employee assistance program (EAP) services, as well as individual life insurance or other death benefit coverage. All of the above benefits are available to new hires upon retirement.  

Flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and health savings accounts (HSAs) are available to assist in covering out-of-pocket health care costs. In addition, at the time of retirement, unused sick leave is turned into a credit against future premiums for retiree health care plans.

Next: Work benefits, arrangements and other opportunities. >>

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