Carnegie Mellon University

Leaving the University

As you prepare to separate from Carnegie Mellon University, there are steps you should take to ensure that you receive the benefits you are entitled to and that your last-day obligations are met.

The Offboarding Checklist for Staff [pdf] provides detailed information about the offboarding process and all tasks that must be completed before your last day with the university.

While the Offboarding Checklist for Staff is the most comprehensive set of guidelines, please find some key highlights related to the offboarding process below.

If you are a supervisor of an employee who is separating with the university, please visit the Manager Resources Offboarding page for support.

  1. Notify your supervisor when your last day will be by submitting a resignation letter specifying the last day of work and the reason for resignation. Non-exempt staff members are asked to give at least two weeks' notice. Exempt staff members are asked to give one month's notice.
    1. After having a conversation with your supervisor, please begin the submit resignation process in Workday. Review the Submit Resignation System Guide [pdf] for more information. Please note that the Workday process only applies to employees who are leaving the university and does not apply employees transferring to a different position within the university.
  2. Discuss with your supervisor any outstanding work or projects.
  3. Discuss with your supervisor an appropriate email auto-response message, if needed.
  4. Assign different ownership to any CMU Box folders and documents.
  5. Return your laptop/computer/files.
  6. Return CMU ID Card, keys, parking pass and procurement card, if applicable.
  7. If PTO eligible, ensure your PTO balance in Workday is up-to-date and accurate.
    • Note: If you have used more PTO days than you've earned, the university reserves the right to subtract the value of those PTO days from your final pay. 
  8. For hourly employees, please ensure that you have submitted all time worked in Workday. 
  9. Clear out your office or work space.
  10. Contact HR Employee Services for any benefits-related questions.

In most cases your earned but unused PTO balance, up to your annual entitlement, is paid out upon termination of employment (including retirement) or transfer to a non-PTO eligible position (e.g., full-time to part-time; staff to faculty).

Your supervisor or other department representative will notify Payroll of the balance to be paid out through the Workday separation transaction or by contacting the HR Employee Services.

Generally, your final paycheck will include payment for accrued, unused PTO days. If you have used more PTO days than you've earned (a negative PTO balance), the university reserves the right to subtract the value of those PTO days from your final pay.

See the Paid Time Off Policy for complete information on PTO pay out, including guidelines and exceptions.

When an employee or covered dependent loses eligibility to participate in our health plans, coverage is terminated. However, under most circumstances, coverage may be continued through COBRA. Under COBRA, employees pay the full cost of the plan, plus a 2% fee. COBRA is generally offered for up to 18 months.

Active coverage ends on the last day of the month in which eligibility ends (i.e., the last day of employment). COBRA is effective the 1st of the month following, so there is no gap in coverage.

Enrolling in COBRA

  1. Upon your loss of eligibility, the CMUWorks Service Center notifies the COBRA administrator, Benefit Coordinators Corporation (BCC).
  2. BCC sends you a COBRA Qualifying Event Notice.
  3. If you choose to elect COBRA, you need to complete the election paperwork and return it directly to BCC along with the first month's premium. There is a 60-day election period for COBRA.
  4. Coverage is reinstated retroactive to the date coverage was lost.
  5. Open Enrollment is held for COBRA participants each fall, allowing COBRA participants to make plan changes effective January 1.

Benefits Under COBRA

The COBRA plans offered are the exact same plans offered to active employees. In general, you must enroll in the same plans you had as a covered member. However, you do not have to choose all plans (i.e. you can choose to continue dental, but not vision). And, you can also choose who you want to continue coverage for (i.e. waive COBRA for yourself, but elect for your spouse and/or children). Learn more about COBRA.

Read the General Notice of COBRA Continuation Coverage Rights [pdf].

NOTE: If you are currently enrolled in an international benefit plan, please contact your local HR representative or the HR Employee Services for information regarding your COBRA eligibility and other important benefits information.

Plan participants who terminate employment with CMU may leave their assets in the plan or roll over their assets to another employer or to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA).

Learn how to roll over your assets or start distributions on the Investment Options page.