Postdoctoral Research Associate Onboarding Banner

Welcome to your new role as a Postdoctoral Research Associate!

On this webpage, you will find information, resources, and a "getting started checklist" designed to help you successfully orient yourself to the university and facilitate a smooth transition into your new position. You are encouraged to refer back to this webpage for useful information throughout your entire time here at UConn.

PLEASE NOTE: Postdoctoral Research Associates employed at UConn are represented by the UConn UAW "Postdocs" Union and are covered by a collective bargaining agreement. Postdoctoral Research Fellows and Trainees are not represented by the UConn UAW Postdocs Union or collective bargaining agreement. This webpage is intended to assist Postdoctoral Research Associates with their employee onboarding process.

Your Getting Started Checklist:

Grad student smiling for the camera in front of colorful background

Prior to Arriving on Campus

1 Find Off Campus Housing

When looking at off campus housing, it is important to find the right living situation for you. Gathering your needs and considering all available options is the first step to determining where you’ll call home during the next academic year. Here are a few items you should consider before making your decision.

UConn Off-Campus Housing Information

Off-Campus Housing Checklist

Public Transportation Information

Parking on Campus

2 Obtain a Work Visa

IMPORTANT! International Post-Docs - Please review the the following information:

If you are an International individual who is going to be employed by the University of Connecticut, then you must make an appointment with Jennifer Martin in our Payroll Department for assistance. View the University of Connecticut Employment of International Individuals Document for more information.

Since each prospective employee’s circumstances are unique, it is very important that you complete this form to ensure your visa status and payroll information is correct.

Additional Information:

General Information Regarding Payments Made to Foreign Nationals

H – 1B Temporary Workers

Mae researcher adjusting equipment.

On or Before your First Day of Work

1 Attend New Employee Orientation

Through New Employee Orientation, Human Resources collaborates with offices across the University to introduce new employees to the multifaceted aspects of UConn. New Employee Orientation also affords new employees the opportunity to learn about all that UConn has to offer for benefits and services. New employee orientation is mandatory for all Regular Payroll UConn employees including Postdocs.

New Employee Orientation takes place over two days; Day 1 is a live online session, and Day 2 is a self-paced online program. For specific information about New Employee Orientation, including orientation dates, new hire forms, and how to prepare for your orientation sessions, visit the New Employee web page on the Human Resources website.

2 Enroll in Employee Health Insurance

As you are now part of the University’s exemplary group of Post-Docs, you have the opportunity to obtain health benefits through the Connecticut Partnership Plan. You will be able to enroll in or waive health insurance coverage within 31 days of your employment start date through the State of CT's Core-CT system. Access to the Employee Self-Service (ESS) system for benefits enrollment will be available after the start date of your employment. For additional information see the Employee Benefits Overview on the Human Resources website. Should you have questions about enrolling in employee health benefits, please contact Human Resources at 860-486-3034 or

3 Make a Retirement Plan Election

As a Postdoctoral Research Associate, you are eligible to either enroll or waive participation in the State of Connecticut Alternate Retirement Program (ARP). Your retirement plan election is a one-time irrevocable decision that will follow all future state employment in a retirement eligible position.

You must submit your Retirement Election Form on or before your first day of work (as noted in your Offer Letter).

If you do not return a retirement election form by your first day of work, you will be automatically and irrevocably defaulted into the Alternate Retirement Plan per the Postdoc Collective Bargaining Agreement.

4 Get Your Parking Permit

All employees parking on campus must obtain a parking permit. Learn about the different permits available, apply for your permit online, and check out the campus parking maps. Apply for a parking permit on the Parking Services website .

5 Get Your Husky One Card

The Husky One Card is the official UConn ID for all students, faculty, and staff. Your One Card serves many functions and may be used to gain access to labs or other buildings. You can submit a photo for your ID in advance online. You will receive your One Card via mail. Apply for you Husky One Card on the One Card office website.

6 Complete I-9, Payroll Tax Forms, and Enroll in Direct Deposit

Federal law requires employers to verify the identity and employment authorization of each newly hired (or rehired) employee with the completion of Form I-9. Contact your hiring department or payroll for support. Additionally, employee wages are subject to federal and state taxes, it is important to complete and submit federal and state tax withholding (W-4) forms to ensure correct tax withholding for your personal situation. Direct deposit of your paycheck is recommended for all University of Connecticut employees.

Should you have questions regarding I-9, W-4 forms or direct deposit, contact the Payroll Office at (860) 486-2423 or via the online Payroll Help Desk. All payroll forms may be uploaded via the Payroll Forms Upload Center.

For International Post-Docs: Wages are subject to federal and state taxes. Each individual’s situation is different and can affect tax liability. To determine your withholding, complete the online Foreign National Information Form upon arrival in the U.S.

Smiling female postdoc posing with researcher behind microscope.

During Your First 2 Weeks of Work

1 Complete an Employee Safety Training Assessment (ESTA)

Complete an Employee Safety Training Assessment with your supervisor using your area's Workplace Hazard Assessment to learn which safety training courses are appropriate for your new position.

2 Complete Sexual Harassment Prevention Training

All employees are required to complete state-mandated sexual harassment prevention training during their first semester of employment. You will receive an email notifying you when you this training has been assigned to you in the Learning@Work system.

3 Join the Various Social Channels and Listservs

PostDoc Listserv:
Stay current with events for postdocs, fellowship and job postings, and more by signing up here .

PostDoc Group on Facebook:
Our UConn Postdocs group brings together postdocs at UConn and facilitate more interaction. Feel free to get in touch with other UConn postdocs, post questions, and arrange social events. Join the group here .

4 View and Print Your Paycheck in Core-CT

Once you receive your first paycheck, you can access, view and print your paychecks using self-service in Core-CT. You can search paychecks by check date, view your check in .pdf format and print a copy of your check using your web browser. To assist you in understanding the codes and terms on your paycheck, view this "Understanding Your Paycheck" job aid..

5 Complete the Technology Training Tutorial

ITS offers technology training for both students and employees, which will walk you through technology tools available to you and how to activate them.

6 Be a part of the National Postdoctoral Association

As you may know our institution is a Sustaining Member of the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA), and one of the greatest benefits is you can become an Affiliate Member of the NPA for free! We encourage everyone to take advantage of this opportunity to help you network with other postdocs across the country and gain access to members only resources that can help further your career.

Sign up here and follow the registration process. Once you click “Submit” the NPA Membership Manager will review your Affiliate membership within five working days, and you will receive an email when it has been approved.

As an NPA Affiliate Member, you are entitled to these benefits:

  • Subscription to NPA e-alerts, a periodic news announcement, and The POSTDOCket, the NPA’s official monthly newsletter
  • Reduced registration fees to the NPA Annual Conference and eligibility for the NPA travel award program
  • Access to members-only NPA web content, such as career planning resources and policy information
  • Access to NPA member groups to connect & network with fellow NPA members
  • Discounts to some services and products
  • Opportunities to serve and contribute your expertise on a variety of NPA committees
  • National representation on postdoctoral issues
  • Male researcher working with testing equipment.

    During Your First Semester and Beyond

    1 Complete Diversity Awareness Training

    All employees are required to complete state-mandated diversity awareness training during their first semester of employment. You will receive an email notifying you when you this training has been assigned to you in the Learning@Work system.

    2 Complete Annual Compliance Training

    All employees are required to complete annual compliance training every year. You will be notified directly when this annual training is available and has been assigned to you in the Learning@Work system.

    3 Engage in Your Career Development

    Make your career development a priority throughout your time as a post-doc at the University. The Center for Career Development offers career consultation appointments and provides workshops, digital tools, and events to guide and support your career preparation.

  • Career Development Events - calendar of live and pre-recorded events
  • Graduate Students and Postdocs Career Support - resources and digital tools to support career preparation in and beyond academia
  • Learning@Work - professional development programs and courses offered by HR and State of Connecticut
  • Handshake - appointment scheduling system for career consultations with Center for Career Development career coaches
  • Affinity Communities - identity-focused groups with specialized content for students (but with resources also of value to postdocs)
  • 4 Consider Taking Part in PostDoc Seed Award

    Each year, The Graduate School hosts a SEED Award that provides several postdocs with $2000 in funding to establish their own project. The competition is supported by multiple info and training sessions to help Postdocs develop their grant-writing skills. For more information, visit the Postdoc Seed Award page.

    5 Take Part in Postdoc Appreciation Week

    Since 2009, the National Postdoc Association has sponsored National Postdoc Appreciation Day/Week to recognize the significant contributions that postdoctoral scholars make to U.S. research and discovery. Institutions from across the country and other parts of the world participate by holding special events. This week-long celebration takes place during the third full week of September annually.