Appointment Letter Guidelines and Templates
There are three types of postdoctoral scholars as defined in the policy:
Postdoctoral Scholar – Fellow
An appointment is made to the title “Postdoctoral Scholar – Fellow” when (1) the agency funding the salary requires or permits the appointee to be classified as an employee of the University, or (2) whenever General Funds, or other University funds are used to support the position. Fellows are typically employed to work and train with faculty on the faculty member’s research project.
Postdoctoral Scholar –Trainee
An appointment is made to the title “Postdoctoral Scholar –Trainee” when the Postdoctoral Scholar has been awarded a fellowship or traineeship for postdoctoral study by an extramural agency and the fellowship or traineeship is paid through a University account, but not through the university Human Resources payroll system. Trainees receive a stipend to pursue an individually defined training program.
Postdoctoral Scholar – Affiliate
An appointment is made to the title “Postdoctoral Scholar – Affiliate” when the postdoctoral scholar has been awarded a fellowship or traineeship for postdoctoral study by an extramural/external agency/organization and the extramural/external agency/organization pays the fellowship or traineeship directly to the postdoctoral scholar, rather than through the University. Such appointments shall have a “without-salary” status.
Listed below you will find appointment letter templates. While you do not have to use them, please keep in mind that all appointment letters must contain the following information as stated in the policy:
- basic terms of the appointment including the intended overall period of appointment (including the provision of the annual required renewal of the appointment)
- the end date for the current award must be indicated even if a renewal of the award is anticipated
- the compensation level
- the health benefits that will be provided (minimally, the scholar must be provided payment/contribution toward the cost of health insurance equal to the cost of individual coverage from a designated plan offered through the Office of Postdoctoral Services)
- amount of paid leave time (minimally, the scholar must be provided with 20 days per appointment year)
- a statement that benefits associated with this position terminate when the postdoctoral appoint ends
- a statement that the appointment is subject to University and Office of Research policies
- whether funding for the period of the intended appointment is secure; if not, the duration of secure funding must be noted
- if the appointment is dependent on extramural funding
- a general description of the project and/or activities on which the postdoctoral scholar initially is to be involved
- that an annual review of the progress of the postdoctoral scholar will be undertaken.
If an appointment is renewed or extended, a letter documenting the renewal of the appointment containing the information as described above must be provided to the individual.
Postdoctoral Scholar-Fellow letter template
Postdoctoral Scholar-Trainee letter template
Postdoctoral Scholar-Affiliate letter template