Carnegie Mellon University

Investment Options

TIAA is CMU's retirement vendor. You can make changes to your investment funds through TIAA online or by phone once your first contribution is made.

Fund Options

Rollovers and Distributions

Participants may roll over their assets from a qualified retirement plan from a previous institution to CMU. If you terminate employment with the university, you may roll over your vested assets at CMU to another institution.

  • Roll Over Assets from an Outside Institution to CMU: If you are rolling over your assets from an outside institution to CMU, you will need to complete the Moving Funds to TIAA Form [pdf]. You will also need proof that the assets are coming from a qualified plan or traditional IRA. Contact your vendor for more information.
  • Distributions When Employment Ends: If you are terminated and/or leaving the university, contact TIAA to take a distribution or roll over funds to another institution or vendor. You can complete your request online or obtain paperwork from TIAA and submit the completed paperwork directly to TIAA. TIAA will securely contact CMU's Retirement Benefits staff members to verify your employment end date and vesting.

In-Service Withdrawals

You may be able to withdraw funds from your retirement savings before your retirement date if you meet eligibility requirements.

  • You are eligible to take in-service withdrawals from your employee source contributions for any reason after age 59.5.
  • Hardship distributions are available at any age under the IRS Safe Harbor hardship rules. Contact TIAA for the necessary forms, and TIAA will process.

You are eligible to take an in-service withdrawal from the contributions made by the university on your behalf, even if you are still employed by the university, as long are over age 59.5, vested in your university contributions, and you satisfy one of the two following conditions:

  1. you are a fully-vested faculty member and your status changes from a full-time employee to a part-time employee or your status changes to “retired” or “emeritus,” or
  2. you suffer an immediate and heavy financial need for any of the following reasons:
    1. qualified medical expenses
    2. to prevent eviction from or foreclosure on, your primary residence
    3. funeral or burial expenses for your deceased parent, spouse, child or other dependent
    4. to repair damage to your principal residence what would qualify for a casualty loss deduction under Code §165
    5. satisfaction of a judgment entered against you in a court of law, settlement of an action filed against you in a court of law or settlement of a debt for which the creditor has instituted collection proceedings or taken other action adversely affecting your credit
CMU Retirement Benefits Specialists must approve and sign off on in-service withdrawals from university contributions.


When taking out a new loan, you will be:

  • Offered a fixed rate of interest, and the loan will be funded directly from your retirement account. The loan amount will be deducted from your account, and payments, including interest, will be credited back to your account.
  • Charged a one-time origination fee of $75 for general purpose loans and $125 for primary residence loans. There is also an annual loan maintenance fee of $25.
  • Allowed a maximum of two outstanding loans at any one time. Former employees are not eligible to request new loans.

Loans are administered by TIAA. Contact TIAA for information and the form. See the Carnegie Mellon Loan Policy [pdf] for more information.