Skip to main content

Faculty Benefits

The University of Houston Powerhouse Faculty enjoys a number of both personal and professional benefits. The brief summaries of benefits and programs below are designed to help search committees market the University of Houston to job candidates.

Additionally, Visit Houston outlines key benefits to living and working in America's fourth largest city.

Professional Development

National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity: All UH faculty have access to the NCFDD, which is a nationally recognized organization that provides a virtual professional development and mentoring community. The services are provided by highly trained and successful mentors that offer a confidential “safe space” for problem solving and can be accessed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.  The NCFDD’s mission centers on three objectives – helping faculty members: (1) to increase their research and writing productivity; (2) to manage their work-life balance; and (3) create broad networks of collegial support on campus and across institutions.

Provost's Travel Fund: Source of support for tenured/tenure track faculty and librarian travel when presenting peer-reviewed work at important professional meetings.

Global Faculty Development Fund: This Provost initiative helps faculty to defray the costs of engaging in innovative global activities.

Cougar Chairs Leadership Academy: CCLA is dedicated to developing a network of problem solvers in all UH departments who will work together to produce and sustain high quality programs through the leadership of Faculty. CCLA will prepare individuals to step into departmental leadership roles to support UH strategic plans, specifically addressing the recruitment, retention, and leadership of outstanding faculty.

Provost Visiting Scholars Program: Supports visits by faculty who are potential candidates for current or future faculty hires, and contributes to increasing Tier One excellence, student success, and equity and diversity at UH.

Learning and Talent Development:  The Department of Human Resources’ Learning and Talent Development unit offers staff and faculty classes and resources on leadership and management. 

Research

The Office of Research Development (ORD): ORD advances research by identifying relevant funding opportunities for faculty; working with research teams to successfully apply to opportunities; providing workshops  and resources on grantsmanship; and seeking collaborative opportunities across local, regional and national entities for faculty.

Office of Contracts and Grants (OCG): OCG Pre-Award assists faculty in obtaining external funding by working together to review and approve research proposals, ensuring proposed project budget accuracy, confirming compliance with University and sponsor requirements, and submitting proposals. OCG Post-Award negotiates and accepts awards, communicates sponsor terms and conditions to faculty, establishes cost centers, assists with submission of progress reports, approves expenditure reallocations, assists faculty with financial monitoring of the sub-recipient, and assists with general award management. OCG Research Financial Services handles billing, financial reporting, and effort reporting and closeout for sponsored projects.

Office of Policies, Compliance and Committees (ORPCC): ORPCC works with faculty to ensure compliance with federal regulations in areas concerning human subjects, animal subject, conflicts of interest, grant congruency, and responsible conduct of research. ORPCC conducts congruency reviews prior to award set up(verification of IRB, IACUC, COI, safety approvals).

Office of Intellectual Property Management (OIPM): OIPM manages patents, copyrights and trademarks, and works with faculty and the Intellectual Property Committee to file patents for inventions. The principal goal is to foster research and scholarship through the effective transfer of University-wide technology to industry.

Animal Care Operations (ACO): ACO provides professional veterinary and husbandry services to support animals used in biomedical and behavioral research, including the maintenance of standards for animals, facilities, equipment and procedures. ACO provides such services to faculty, such as animal procurement, training, veterinary consultation in research design, transportation of animals and veterinary care. ACO also provides professional veterinary medical, husbandry and proposal review services to support animals used in biomedical research.

Teaching

Faculty and Departmental Instructional Support (FDIS): Provides professional support services to the faculty community with guidance in the use of technology needed in the online environment as well as in the traditional classroom.

Innovative Teaching: FDIS provides faculty with funding and resources to develop innovative teaching. Examples are the Teaching Innovation Program (TIP) grant; Active Learning Classroom (ALC); Flipped Classroom.

Workshops for using Blackboard, Turningpoint, Turnitin, Blackboard Collaborate, Respondus: FDIS provides consultations, workshops and knowledge base services to faculty.  Faculty have the option of selecting the format for the workshop: open labs, webinar, face-to-face training, or online tutorials.

UH Writing Center: Writing Center staff can assist in designing discipline-specific writing assignments that effectively communicate your expectations, developing rubrics that ensure workable feedback and reduce the grading workload, and training TAs on an individual and departmental basis.

UH Libraries: UH Libraries offers faculty teaching support, borrowing and collections assistance, and research services.

Technology Training: UH Libraries offers free technology courses held in the Learning Commons Training Lab of the MD Anderson Library.

FacultyEnlight: The UH Bookstore offers FacultyEnlight, a tool that makes it easier for faculty to research, discuss, discover, and adopt learning materials.

University Information Technology: UIT offers classroom equipment, telephone service, and video conferencing assistance.

Dean of Students: The Dean of Students office is available to help faculty promote positive behavior in the classroom. The office aims to help students chart a path toward success, overcoming barriers as they arise and ensuring that the proper support services are being utilized as needed. The Office also provides Student Advocacy Services and is dedicated to helping students find answers and resolutions to any barriers to their success.

Faculty Awards: The Office of the Provost is proud to sponsor a number of awards for faculty, with the vision of promoting and recognizing excellence at UH.

Center for Students with DisABILITIES (CSD): Provides individual and departmental consultation and assistance to faculty and staff regarding student ADA accommodations and disability-related issues. CSD offers faculty and staff customized training on working with students who have disabilities. Some of our services and resources include a dedicated testing center, adaptive equipment, and computer labs.

Veteran Services: Veteran Services address the needs and concerns of our nation’s military, veterans, and their dependents who attend UH. Veteran Services can assist faculty when dealing with veteran issues in the classroom, as well as provide knowledge and resources for veterans on campus.

Family Related Resources

Dual Career Program: Recognizing dual career partner assistance is a crucial element in recruiting and retaining excellent faculty, UH has initiated a program that offers customized assistance to qualified couples. The UH Dual Career Program is a partnership between the departments, deans, the Office of the Provost, and broader community.

Lactation Rooms: Recognizing the importance and benefits of breastfeeding for working mothers and their infants and in promoting a family-friendly work environment, UH has accessible lactation rooms across campus.

Family and Medical Leave: The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provides faculty and other employees with up to twelve (12) weeks of job protection for covered family and medical situations.

Parental Leave: Individuals who do not qualify for Family and Medical Leave because they are new to UH or work a part time schedule that does not meet the FMLA minimum, may qualify instead for Parental Leave, which provides up to twelve (12) weeks of job protection for the birth of a child or the adoption or foster placement of a child under 3.

Extension of Probationary Period for Childbirth or Adoption (page 6): An untenured tenure-track faculty member who becomes a parent due to the birth or adoption of a child and who is responsible for the primary care of that child will be given upon request a one-year extension of the probationary period.

Teaching Relief: Full-time tenured or tenure-track faculty who are primary caregivers of an infant or newly adopted child may apply for one semester of teaching relief, during which time other duties will be assigned in lieu of teaching.

Sick Leave: Full-time faculty earn sick leave hours at the rate of eight hours per month. Part-time faculty earn sick leave hours at a rate proportionate to the scheduled work hours for their position.

Sick Leave Pool: The sick leave pool provides a source of additional paid sick leave for employees who have suffered a catastrophic illness or injury and have exhausted all accrued leave. If sick leave pool hours are needed the employee or their designee must submit an application to Human Resources.

Medical & Life Benefits

Insurance: UH faculty and staff enjoy a comprehensive choice of insurance plans including medical, dental, vision care, life, accident, short-term disability, long-term disability, long-term care insurance and flexible spending accounts. Optional benefits include accident, cancer, critical illness and hospital protection plans as well as universal life with long-term care. Medical coverage is provided through Employees Retirement System of Texas (ERS) at no cost to full-time benefits eligible faculty and staff. Dependent medical coverage and other insurance coverage are available at group rates.

UH Retirement TRS & ORP Supplemental

Teacher Retirement System (TRS): All TRS-eligible employees at Texas public institutions of higher education and Texas public educational institutions (e.g., K-12 ISDs) are automatically enrolled in the Teacher Retirement System (TRS) on their first day of employment. TRS is a traditional defined benefit pension plan that provides formula-bases retirement annuities. Vesting occurs after 5 years of participation.

Optional Retirement Program (ORP): ORP-eligible employees at Texas public institutions of higher education may elect to participate in the Optional Retirement Program (ORP) as an alternative to TRS. ORP is a defined contribution plan that is similar to a 401(k) plan with employer “matching” contributions. The vesting period is after a year and a day of participation.

403(b) Plan: The tax deferred annuity program or supplemental retirement annuity is offered to all Part-time and Full-time employees, upon date of hire or anytime thereafter. Investments are through life insurance companies and mutual fund companies licensed to do business in the State of Texas. You may defer monies into the plan as either before-tax or Roth contributions or both.

457 Plan: TexaSaver is a voluntary retirement savings program offered through ERS to all Part-time and Full-time state employees, upon date of hire or anytime thereafter. You may defer monies into the plan as either before-tax or Roth contributions or both.

Health and Wellness Resources

A.D. Bruce Religion Center: The A.D. Bruce Religion Center is a non-denominational facility offering programs and activities in many different spiritual traditions with an emphasis on Interfaith Dialogue. No religious affiliation is required to host or attend an event at the A.D. Bruce Religion Center.

Campus Recreation & Wellness Center: The UH Campus Recreation and Wellness Center is a vibrant facility with indoor and outdoor pools, spas, and sauna; a fitness zone comprised of weight, cardio, and functional training spaces; an indoor track, climbing wall, multi-purpose rooms for group fitness, and courts for volleyball, soccer, basketball, racquetball, and squash.  Faculty membership rates are available.

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS): CAPS staff consists of licensed psychologists, doctoral and masters level mental health professionals, and advanced graduate trainees in counseling and clinical psychology. CAPS recognizes the critical roles of faculty and staff at the university, as you are often the frontline contact with students. We offer crisis triage and consultative support to UH faculty and staff. For more details, including self-help resources, please visit the faculty and staff page of our website.

UH Dining Services: UH Dining Services offers nutrition news and tips on a variety of topics such as vegetarian menu options, understanding food allergies, and recipes.

Dental Services: The UH Health Center offers high quality, convenient dentistry to the University community, and the UH PPO Dental Insurance is accepted.

Employee Assistance Program: The UH Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a confidential counseling and referral program that is available to eligible employees and their families. Whether you want to resolve a stressful work situation, find legal resources or get advice about a financial concern, the EAP can help.

UH Health Center: The UH Health Center has been accredited by the AAAHC since 2012 and offers general medical, immunization and pharmacy services to faculty and staff.

Pharmacy: The UH Health Center Pharmacy's limited formulary carries a variety of both prescription and OTC medication at competitive prices. Pharmacy services are available to all currently enrolled students, faculty and staff.

Human Resources WellnessHuman Resources offers monthly wellness tips on such topics as eye health, nutrition, and cholesterol and stress reduction. POWER UP is a wellness initiative that offers weight management programs such as Weight Watchers and Real Appeal, an online weight loss program available to HealthSelect plan members.

University Eye Institute: The University Eye Institute has been serving the vision needs of the city of Houston since 1952. Faculty who are insured with HealthSelect (United Healthcare) are eligible for one free eye exam per year. The clinic also offers competitive pricing for glasses and contact lenses.

UH Wellness: UH Wellness seeks to empower the campus community to make healthy choices across all dimensions of wellness through evidence-based programs and services that contribute to student success. The office offers educational programs on-request to classrooms, student organizations, and other campus events. UH community members can also take advantage of free educational materials and brief wellness consultations with staff.

Housing

Faculty-in-Residence Program: Faculty members from an array of disciplines live on campus and work closely with Student Housing & Residential Life staff members to provide opportunities where residents can interact with professors outside the classroom environment.

Houston Association of Realtors: HAR is the most frequently visited website for Houston real estate. The website recently expanded to cover the entire state of Texas.

Child Care, Education and Summer Camp

UH Children’s Learning Center: Conveniently located on campus, the Children’s Learning Center (CLC) is dedicated to ensuring that every child's needs are met in a stimulating and developmentally appropriate environment that is joyful, safe, warm and secure. To assist in the recruitment of tenured and tenure track faculty and as a hiring incentive, the Provost has reserved 15 spots (5 infant, 5 toddler, and 5 pre-school) prior to the start of each fall semester. For tenured and tenure track faculty members who are not new recruits to UH have increased probability of enrollment at CLC by completing the application materials for their children 6 months in advance of desired enrollment.

UH Charter School: UHCS is a Texas Education Agency Recognized Public school serving kindergarten through fifth grade students in a model constructivist program. They provide a student-centered curriculum that enhances the intellectual development, technological fluency and leadership ability of students.

Collaborative for Children: Finding quality child care is important and Collaborative for Children is a rich resource for finding the right provider. Collaborative for Children is a nonprofit that strengthens early education throughout Greater Houston.

UH Summer Camps: UH offers summer camps for all ages, in a wide range of interests and specialties including sports, music, STEM, pharmacy, art, business and recreation. Many UH summer campus offer discounts for the children of faculty members.

Houston Area Summer Camps: This searchable resource is a rich resource for camps of all types throughout the Houston area.

Diversity Resources

Center for Advancing UH Faculty Success (ADVANCE): The goal of the NSF ADVANCE program is to increase the number and success of women faculty in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. The five-year ADVANCE grant supports sustainable activities and programs that are part of a systemic effort to transform the institution.

Center for Diversity and Inclusion: The Center for Diversity and Inclusion fosters an inclusive university community by providing services, programs, and support that engages, empowers, and educates our highly diverse student population and campus partners.

LGBTQ Resource Center: The LBGTQ Resource Center is committed to cultivating safe spaces on campus and providing LGBT friendly policies. The center also offers monthly Cougar Ally workshops to assist faculty, staff and students in increasing their awareness of issues that Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender people face.

Women and Gender Resource Center: The Women and Gender Resource Center (WGRC) promotes gender equity, and justice through advocacy, education, and support services. The WGRC serves students, faculty, and staff of all gender identities and expressions.

Employee Perks

Cougar Gear: Faculty can enjoy a 15% discount on apparel, accessories and souvenirs when they present their Cougar Card ID at the campus bookstore when checking out.

Parking and Transportation: Parking and Transportation Services offers faculty the opportunity to join COAST (Coogs on Alternative and Sustainable Transportation), a subsidized incentive program for individuals who carpool or utilize alternative and sustainable options, such as METRO to get to campus.

Employee Discounts: As an employee of the university and the state of Texas, faculty have access to discounts with various external vendors.

Passports for Coogs: The Learning Abroad office is an officially designated U.S. Passport Acceptance Facility by the U.S. Department of State. Faculty can have a free passport photo taken and receive support with applying for a U.S. passport book and/or passport card.

Events and Entertainment

Things to do in Houston: UH offers links to a variety of information about Houston shopping, museums, sports venues and parks. A searchable local event guide is also linked.

UH Calendar: Plan for upcoming campus events such as football games, theatre performances and concerts. Many campus events are free or offer faculty discounts.

UH Athletics: University of Houston Athletics is the home of a wide variety of team sports played on campus, including football, men/women’s basketball, baseball, track and field, volleyball, soccer and softball. Priced affordably.

Blaffer Art Museum: Blaffer Art Museum furthers the understanding of contemporary art through exhibitions, publications, and public programs of merit and distinction. Its exhibitions and programs are free and open to the public.

Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts: The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts s an interdisciplinary collaboration in the performing, visual and literary arts. Many events are free.

Moores School of Music: The Moores School’s primary purpose is to educate and train professional performers and teachers, but it also serves the community at large with public concerts and class offerings. Priced affordably.

School of Theatre and Dance: The School of Theatre and Dance offers a full schedule of performances each year. With Tony award nominated faculty, and nationally renowned dance faculty, the program provides an opportunity to see wonderful works on stage. Priced affordably.