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Email: hr@wju.edu
Phone: 1-304-243-8152


Benefits: Tuition Remission


Date approved:
July 2011
Approved by:
Senior VP for Mission & Ministry
Date to be reviewed:
Feb. 2016
Reviewed by:
Director of Human Resources
Date revised:
Feb. 2015
Revision number:
4.0
 
Compliance Committee:
As Scheduled

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1.0 PURPOSE

In keeping with the Wheeling Jesuit University philosophy of "total rewards," the University offers no-cost or reduced cost tuition to eligible employees as an additional benefit of employment.

2.0 POLICY STATEMENT

2.1 Definitions
  1. Tuition remission - Tuition remission applies to both undergraduate and graduate level courses for benefitseligible
    employees and undergraduate level courses for both spouses and dependents of benefits-eligible
    employees. Benefits-eligible employees and their spouses / dependents can enroll in up to eighteen (18)
    undergraduate credit hours per semester at no cost to the employee or student. Benefits-eligible employees
    can enroll in up to eighteen (18) graduate credit hours per semester; however, graduate tuition in excess of
    the IRS limits must be reported by the employee as compensation and taxable income (see 2.7).
  2. Overload charges - Credits in excess of 18 hours per semester which must be paid at the full rate by the
    benefits-eligible employee or dependent student.
  3. Dependents - Dependency of children and step-children is determined by federal financial aid guidelines
    which are available in the Student Financial Planning Office.
  4. "Benefits-Eligible" - Full-time employees (Faculty, Staff, and Administration) are provided, as a part of their
    overall package, access to health and welfare benefits for themselves and for qualified dependents.
    Participation is optional with some costs being shared by both the University and the employee through
    payroll deductions as premium contributions. Full time is defined in the policy "Types of University
    Employment."

2.2 Policy

Tuition remission is provided to benefits-eligible employees at the levels and per the schedules noted herein.

2.3 Eligibility  

  1. Benefits-eligible employees are eligible for tuition remission beginning the semester immediately following
    the semester in which they begin employment.
  2. Spouses and dependents of employees noted in (a.) enrolled in undergraduate degree-seeking programs are
    eligible for tuition remission beginning the semester immediately following the semester in which the
    spouse or parent begins employment.

2.4 Coverage

  1. Tuition remission is available for benefits-eligible employees per the conditions noted within this policy:
    • At 100% of the cost at undergraduate level.
    • At 50% of the cost at the graduate level.
    • At 25% of the cost for the Accelerated Certification of Teaching (ACT).
  2. Full tuition remission is also available at 100% of the cost at the undergraduate level for spouses and
    dependents of benefit-eligible employees.
  3. Benefits-eligible employees can enroll in the ACT program and receive 25% tuition remission provided they
    hold a bachelor's degree.
  4. Tuition is the only covered benefit; fees, room, board, overload charges, continuing education fees / costs
    and textbook expenses must be paid by the employee or the student.
  5. Tuition remission for the Evening Division, Summer School or Graduate Programs is applicable only when a
    sufficient number of paying students are enrolled.
  6. Tuition Remission for the Physical Therapy program will be limited to the day graduate program fee.
  7. Through a reciprocal agreement, Belmont Technical College offers full tuition waiver for all full-time
    benefits-eligible employees and their spouses and dependents.
  8. Tuition remission extends to other colleges and universities through three tuition exchange programs:
    Council of Independent Colleges (CIC), Tuition Exchange (TE) and select Jesuit colleges and universities
    (FACHEX). Tuition remission through exchange programs is limited to dependents of full-time employees
    and retirees as defined in 2.6(e) subject to specific rules which are applied after Wheeling Jesuit University
    eligibility is determined. Questions regarding where to locate information on the colleges and universities
    included should be directed to Human Resources.

2.5 Requirements

  1. Classes taken by employees should be outside normal working hours. As an exception and in some
    circumstances, employees may be permitted to take a course during their work day. Requests to do so must
    be submitted in writing and directed to the executive administrator responsible for the department; both
    the executive administrator and the Director of Human Resources must approve the request. For example,
    an employee who is within thirty (30) hours of graduation and requires a course that is only offered during
    the day may be granted an exception.
  2. Any employee wishing to drop a class (es) must do so during the University's specified add / drop period.
    Tuition remission will not be provided for any class (es) dropped after that time. Employees must check with
    the Registrar's Office to determine the final date a class may be dropped without incurring additional
    expense.
  3. Tuition remission will not apply to any class in which the employee, spouse, or dependent receives a failing
    grade.

2.6 Limitations and Special Considerations

  1. Tuition remission for spouses and dependents of employees is limited to one (1) undergraduate degree from
    Wheeling Jesuit University. Dependents must graduate within eight (8) semesters. Courses taken after eight
    (8) semesters will not be covered by tuition remission; however, dependents may appeal to the financial aid
    committee for consideration of additional time under extenuating circumstances.
  2. Tuition remission is provided for employees, their spouses, and their dependents to earn their first (1st)
    undergraduate degree. Wheeling Jesuit University will not apply tuition remission toward a second (2nd)
    undergraduate degree regardless of where or when the first (1st) undergraduate degree was obtained.
    Eligible individuals may apply tuition remission to complete an undergraduate (bachelor's) degree initiated
    elsewhere or after completion of an associate's degree earned elsewhere per the conditions defined within
    this policy. Acceptance of credits and courses transferred from another institution will be per Wheeling
    Jesuit University's admissions and academic criteria in place at the time of application.
  3. Employees must remain employed at Wheeling Jesuit University during the period of enrollment for the
    employee, spouse or dependent to continue to receive tuition remission (exception: retirees - see "e"
    below). In the event an employee loses his/her position through no fault of his/her own (ex: reduction in
    force), the employee, spouse, or dependent will be permitted to complete the balance of the semester on
    tuition remission.
  4. Nieces and nephews of any Jesuit employed as an administrator at Wheeling Jesuit University are eligible for
    the tuition remission program. Such arrangements will be made through the president.
  5. Tuition remission is available for dependents of employees who are retired ("retired" is defined as: 1.)
    completing a minimum of ten (10) years of continuous service with the University, 2) being eligible for
    retirement benefits as defined by a 403(b) plan or social security for those who are not enrolled in a 403(b)
    plan, and 3) actually tendering your retirement from the University), are incapacitated or deceased.
    Dependents may receive full tuition remission until a bachelor's degree is earned.
  6. Some of the tuition remission benefits offered by the University may represent taxable income to the
    employee; Employees are urged to consult their tax professional concerning the tax implications of this
    benefit (see 2.7).
2.7 IRS Guidelines
  1. Section 127 of the IRS Code allows all employers, regardless of whether or not they are an educational
    institution, to provide their employees with educational assistance for both undergraduate and graduate
    work. IRS regulations consider anything of value provided to an employee by an employer to be a form of
    compensation. All compensation must generally be reported as taxable wages and is subject to income tax
    withholding, unless specifically excluded by the Internal Revenue Code. Undergraduate tuition remission is
    generally excluded and not taxed; however, the Internal Revenue Service has ruled that the graduate tuition
    remission benefit may be taxable income.
  2. Under section 117(d) of the Internal Revenue Code, educational institutions offering a full reduction of
    tuition charges (tuition remission) to employees, their spouses, and their dependent children for
    undergraduate coursework may exclude the value of this education from their employees' taxable wages.
  3. The tuition remission that the University offers employees for graduate-level education is eligible for a
    partial exclusion; therefore, the full exclusion noted in "b" does not extend to graduate coursework.
    Employers may provide each employee with up to $5,250 of educational assistance per year on a tax-free
    basis for graduate coursework. The Internal Revenue Code requires that educational assistance in excess of
    the $5,250 exclusion must be added to employees' taxable wages and employment taxes must be withheld.
    Therefore, employees who are approved for graduate coursework and begin registering for graduate level
    courses at the graduate tuition rate must be aware that the University benefit is for 50% of tuition up to the
    amount permitted by the IRS which is currently $5250. Any amount in excess of that dollar amount will be
    considered compensation and the employee will be required to pay taxes on that amount. When registering
    for classes, the employee should be cognizant of the number of credits hours he/she is registering for both
    in the semester and cumulative for the calendar year, the cost of those credits hours, the amount of the
    University benefit, and the residual amount on which the employee may be taxed.

3.0 AUTHORIZATION

The Director of Human Resources has the authority to change, modify or approve exceptions to this policy at any
time with or without notice and with the approval of the University President or his designee.

4.0 ATTACHMENTS

 


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