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Northern Illinois University
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Educational Benefits
Procedure No. 7-1
Issued 7/2001
  1. Tuition Waiver Program for NIU Employees/Retirees


    1. General Guidelines
    2. Employees and retirees of Northern Illinois University may enroll for credit at Northern Illinois University with exemption from tuition and other registration fees, except those fees (such as the student health insurance fee) where eligibility is determined by fee submission to an outside agency or vendor, in accord with University rules, provided that the employee or retiree has the required prerequisites, meets any other admissions standards, and be on the University payroll through the last day of registration. The waiver granted in any one semester or summer session shall be subject to the following limitations:

      Regular Academic Year

      Retirees and full-time employees 8 hours

      7/8-time or greater employees 7 hours

      3/4-time or greater employees 6 hours

      5/8-time or greater employees 5 hours

      1/2-time or greater employees 4 hours

      Summer Session

      Retirees and full-time employees 4 hours

      3/4-time or greater employees 3 hours

      1/2-time or greater employees 2 hours

      Summer session is considered to include all sessions, regardless of title (summer session, inter-session, pre-session, etc.), between the close of the Spring semester and the beginning of the Fall semester of the succeeding academic year.

      For employees not working full time during the summer, the waiver maximum may be determined by the employment rate of either the summer or of the semester immediately preceding the summer, whichever would yield the highest waiver. These maximum credit values are employee benefit limitations and do not apply to enrollments in approved work-related training programs, the purpose of which is to improve university services.

      A full-time faculty or supportive professional staff employee may not register for credit in excess of the number of hours for which tuition and fees may be waived as listed above. If a retiree, Civil Service, or part-time employee registers for more than the maximum number of hours for which tuition and fees may be waived, the charge to the employee shall be the difference between the total tuition and fees which would normally be charged for the number of credit hours taken and the amount of tuition and registration fees which may be waived.

      Faculty who hold the rank of assistant professor or higher may take graduate courses but may not be admitted to or enrolled in a program leading to a graduate degree in the same program area or department in which they instruct.

      Employees in a Civil Service status position under the State Universities Civil Service System and retirees from such positions may also enroll in any State of Illinois public university covered by the State Universities Civil Service System with exemption from tuition and application fees according to the schedule in effect at the institution they attend.

    3. Fees Waived
    4. The tuition and other registration fees to be waived shall be those usually charged undergraduate or graduate students. For employees registering in programs or courses with higher tuition and/or registration fees, the waiver shall be limited to the usual tuition and registration fee charge, with the employee paying any differential. Fees directly related to a particular course will not be waived.

    5. Procedure
    6. The employee must follow admission and registration procedures. (Contact the Admissions Office at 815-753-0446).

      1. Faculty/SPS Employees
      2. Faculty/Supportive Professional Staff employees must obtain an Application for Educational Benefits For Academic Staff Form from Human Resource Services, complete it, and submit it first to the Department Chair or Unit Administrator for approval, then to Human Resource Services.

      3. Civil Service Employees

      Civil Service employees who wish to enroll in NIU classes outside of the regularly scheduled hours of work may simply enroll and register for these classes. Prior to or upon enrollment at NIU, Civil Service employees must submit a completed Civil Service Tuition Waiver Application to Human Resource Services. Civil Service employees who wish to enroll in classes during regularly scheduled work hours must complete the bottom portion of the Civil Service Tuition Waiver Application form and obtain supervisory approval. Supervisory approval is required to take courses during regular work hours and is based on the operational needs of the unit. Make-up time may or may not be required depending upon the situation and the course being taken. See the form for further details and limitations. Upon receipt and approval of required forms/application, tuition and related registration fees will be waived.

      Civil Service employees who wish to enroll in classes at another reciprocal institution outside of the regularly scheduled hours of work may simply enroll and register for these classes. Preferably prior to or upon enrollment at that institution, Civil Service employees must submit a completed Request for Interinstitutional Waiver of Tuition to Human Resource Services. This will be forwarded to the reciprocal institution for approval. Upon approval, tuition and fees, as applicable under that institutionís policy, will be waived.

      The law governing the taxation of graduate tuition waivers is a topic of frequent discussion and subject to change. Please refer to your tax consultant for current taxability. The cutoff date for accepting all forms/applications is thirty (30) days after the end of the applicable semester.

  2. Tuition Waiver Program for Children of Employees


    1. General Guidelines

      1. Interinstitutional Tuition Waiver
      2. Children of employees of any Illinois public university who have been employed by any one, or by more than one, Illinois public university for an aggregate period of at least seven years at a full-time equivalency rate of 50 percent or more are eligible for a 50 percent tuition waiver for undergraduate education at any Illinois public university. Applications are available through the Office of Human Resource Services.

      3. Northern Illinois University Tuition Waiver

        In addition to the interinstitutional tuition waiver benefits described above, children of employees of Northern Illinois University are eligible for a 50 percent tuition waiver for undergraduate education at Northern Illinois University provided the employee was employed prior to January 1, 1999 and has been employed for an aggregate period of at least 3 years full time or 7 years part time at Northern Illinois University. Children of retirees of Northern Illinois University are eligible for a 50 percent tuition waiver for undergraduate education at Northern Illinois University provided the retiree had been employed for an aggregate period of at least 7 years prior to retirement. Applications are available through the Office of Human Resource Services.

    2. Limitations of Waiver
    3. The employer waiver is available only for employees' children who are under age 25 on the first day of classes of the fall semester of the current academic year. Eligibility for this waiver is dependent upon employment status of parents at the beginning of applicable semester. The 50% tuition waiver shall not be rescinded in the event an employee becomes ineligible after the waiver has been applied, but no future waivers will be applied until the employee regains eligibility under this program.

      The student must meet admissions eligibility requirements and maintain satisfactory academic progress. The 50% tuition waiver may be applied to a maximum of 124 hours of undergraduate study regardless of whether the student is enrolled as a full-time or part-time student. The 50% tuition waiver is the maximum amount available from the employer per child even though both parents may be employees of an Illinois public university. The 50% tuition waiver level applies regardless of the number of hours of undergraduate enrollment or in the event that a reduction in course load during a semester results in a refund of tuition.

      The waiver is not applicable to noncredit or graduate programs. Students who have already earned a baccalaureate degree but are not enrolled in a graduate program are eligible for the waiver for under-graduate courses. Students enrolled in a graduate program are ineligible even if enrolled in undergraduate courses to make up deficiencies.

    4. Fees Waived
    5. Only a 50% tuition waiver for undergraduate education is afforded. Fees and charges other than tuition are not included in the employer waiver.

    6. Procedure

      An Application for Tuition Waiver for Children of Public University Employees must be completed and filed with the Office of Human Resource Services within thirty (30) days after the end of the applicable semester. Upon receipt and approval of all relevant forms/applications, tuition waiver will be applied.

  3. Tuition Waiver Program for Survivors of Deceased Employees

The surviving spouse and the legally dependent child or children of an employee who dies while employed full time (or on sabbatical leave, sick leave, family medical leave, or disability leave) at Northern Illinois University shall be entitled to a full waiver of tuition and other registration fees, except those fees (such as the student health insurance fee) where eligibility is determined by fee submission to an outside agency or vendor, while enrolled for course work creditable to the baccalaureate degree at Northern Illinois University. Should both parents be full-time employees, the death of one parent makes the child or children eligible for the waiver. "Legally dependent child or children" for these purposes shall mean and include any child who qualified, at the time of the employee's death, as a dependent for income tax exemption purposes under the provisions of Section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code of the United States. Natural or adopted children of a domestic partner will be considered as stepchildren of the employee for the purposes of this program. There is no time limit or any age limit on this benefit, as long as the dependency requirements were met at the time of the employee's death.