Employees at Youngstown State University are required to participate in one of the state retirement systems - Ohio Public Employees Retirement System (OPERS) or the State Teachers Retirement System of Ohio (STRS). University employees do not contribute to the federal social security system and all retirement benefits related to their employment come from the state retirement system(s).

Employees who at some time work in employment covered by the federal social security system may have an adjustment in their social security benefits as a result of their coverage under one of the state retirement systems. The Windfall Elimination Provision*(PDF) notice from the Social Security Administration Form SSA-1945 contains more information on this adjustment.

  • Full-time classified and unclassified employees may elect to participate in either OPERS or an Alternative Retirement Plan (ARP).
  • Full-time faculty members may elect to participate in either STRS or an ARP.
  • Part-time classified and unclassified employees must participate in OPERS
  • Part-time faculty must participate in STRS.

NOTE: There is no ARP option available for part-time employees.

Salary Reduction Pick-Up

Contributions to the Ohio Public Employee Retirement System (OPERS) or State Teachers Retirement System (STRS) are made by the employer and the employee.  Under section 414(h)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code, an employer may pick up the employee's portion of the retirement contribution to a qualified pension plan.  Taxes for the pick- up contributions may then deferred until the employee receives contributions as either a refund after termination of employment or as retirement benefits.  Without a pick-up plan, employee contributions to a qualified pension plan are generally taxable at the time the contribution is made.  A pick-up plan allows deferral of the income taxes on the employee's required contribution amount.  Youngstown State University participates in the salary reduction employer pick up, employees contributions are paid by the employer, and the employee's gross salary is reduced by the amount of the contribution.