Benefits and Support

Benefits & Support for Postdocs

- Below contains links and information to general benefits and support resources at Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Dental Medicine.

Details via Harvard HR:

Harvard University's Benefits for Postdocs
-Outlined on the HMS Human Resources webpage. Click on the link above to navigate to the page.
Please note: Harvard Benefits information only pertains to postdocs hired and paid by HMS/Harvard. If you were hired by one of the affiliate hospitals your benefits derive from that institution.
For specific questions regarding your benefits contact the Benefits Office:
Phone: 617-496-4001
2020 Benefits Slide Presentation
2021 Paid Family Medical Leave
- Benefit updates for postdocs who change from internal to stipendee. -

Changing and Updating Benefits Coverage: Qualifying Life Events | Dependent Loss of Eligibility

NEW POSTDOCS: Watch this one of two videos linked on this page (one for internally paid postdocs another for stipendee postdocs) for a more detailed overview of your benefits. These videos were created by The Benefits Services Group at Harvard University and provides detailed information about benefits and support for postdocs at Harvard. The information on this video only pertains to postdocs receiving a paycheck from Harvard; you must log-in using Harvard Key to view the video. Postdocs receiving a paycheck from one of our teaching hospitals are not considered employees of Harvard and all benefits and policies are administered though the hospital affiliate.

Child Care @ Harvard | Child Care Scholarships
- Whether you are new to Harvard or new to parenthood, you may have questions about child care. As a general matter, there are three main options – center-based care, family day care, and in-home providers, as well as combinations of the above. These pages will give you detailed information about child care centers on or near Harvard’s campuses, as well as provide you with resources for finding other types of child care.​​​​​​​

Harvard University Health Services Insurance for Affiliates
- Postdocs with a current appointment through HMS/HSDM who are ineligible for employee benefits either through the university or another employer may be eligible for enrollment in the Harvard Student Health Plan. There is no limitation to the number of years that postdocs may be enrolled in the Harvard Student Health Plan as long as he/she remains an eligible Harvard Postdoctoral Fellow. Health insurance premiums are paid for "out-of-pocket", so postdocs receiving their pay directly from an outside funding agency are strongly recommended to obtain additional funds for the purchase of this insurance.

Harvard's Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
- Harvard has contracted with the nationally recognized Wellness Corporation (known within the University as Harvard's EAP) to connect faculty and staff with a rich network of resources that can help employees manage the competing demands of work and life. Meanwhile, Harvard still provides extensive services internally. Visit HARVie to learn about Harvard's Office of Work/Life Resources, and how to access additional services at Harvard (Harvard University username and password are required).

Harvard University Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment Policy
- The Harvard Medical School (HMS) and School of Dental Medicine (HSDM) are committed to maintaining a safe and healthy educational and work environment in which no member of the HMS/HSDM community is,on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity, excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or subjected to discrimination in any University program or activity. Gender-based and sexual harassment, including sexual violence, are forms of sex discrimination in that they deny or limit an individual’s ability to participate in or benefit from University programs or activities. Harvard University has adopted a new Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment Policy, which applies to all Harvard students, faculty, staff, postdocs, Harvard appointees, and third parties.
Title IX Coordinator for HMS Staff and Quad-based Postdocs: José Martinez, Senior HR Compliance Manager

HMS/HSDM/HSPH Ombuds Office
- The Ombudsperson is a designated neutral and, as such, does not advocate for any individual or point of view. As an impartial complaint-handler, the Ombudsperson strives to see that people are treated fairly and equitably at Harvard Medical School, Harvard School of Dental Medicine and Harvard School of Public Health. The Office is independent of any existing administrative or academic structures and is responsible only to the dean of each school. The office supplements the existing resources available to members of our communities.

Harvard Information and Cyber Security
- The University Information Security program aspires to make everyone at Harvard a good steward of the institution's information, including information entrusted to us by others. Program elements include policy development and an Information Security Awareness program which, in partnership with the School Security Officers, customizes outreach and education for Harvard's diverse communities.

Harvard Research Data Security Policy (HRDSP)
Harvard University’s Information Security Policy effectively addresses the need to protect confidential and sensitive information that is maintained in the various spheres of University administration. The research setting poses particular information security risks and challenges, including regulatory and contractual constraints that require additional policy provisions and protective measures. While following the Policy Statements of the Harvard Information Security Policy, this policy provides specific guidance for managing research data.

Tax Information for Postdoc
- Contact the Harvard Tax Services Office for information regarding the tax obligations of postdocs working at Harvard. Foreign nationals can find out more about their tax status, exemptions and obligations on the HIO website.
For foreign nationals: as a Harvard postdoc you have access to the Sprintax software to help you prepare your tax return - You will need your Harvard Key, information is available via HIO.
The Harvard International Office also has a section on taxes and social security.  Their website includes links to tax preparers that specialize in international returns as well as contacts for state and federal government resources to help answer your questions about how to declare fellowship income, reimbursements, etc.
If you move from Internal Postdoc to Stipendee Postdoc there are tax and benefits implications, please discuss with your lab or department administrator if you unsure whether this applies to your situaiton.
  -Overview of Tax Information for Postdoc, from the National Postdoctoral Association

Harvard International Office
- The Harvard International Office (HIO) is part of Central Administration of Harvard University and offers services to foreign students and scholars at Harvard College and the ten graduate or professional schools, as well as the numerous research centers and affiliated teaching hospitals. It provides information on a wide range of topics, including visas (work permits, travel), financial questions, social and cultural differences, and personal concerns.

Undocumented at Harvard
Resources and information for undocumented members of the Harvard University community

Travel Tools at Harvard
Register your itinerary, learn about Harvard Travel Assist and find visa requirements & application assistance (for US citiizens). International travel requires careful planning, even for seasoned travelers. Use our tools and resources to inform your pre-departure planning and ensure you have a safe and rewarding trip abroad. Review the Travel Tools "A Checklist Before You Leave" to make sure you're prepared for your international travel.

Tuition Assistance Program (TAP)
- Harvard encourages lifelong learning by helping to cover the cost of undergraduate or graduate courses. The Tuition Assistance Plan (TAP) assists with classes taken at Harvard. The Tuition Reimbursement Plan (TRP) assists with classes taken at other accredited schools.  Please note: there are eligibility guidelines for Tuition Assistance, please download the TAP/TRP Booklet for complete details.
June 2020 - Please note that the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) and Tuition Reimbursement Program (TRP) forms and approval process will be updated starting with enrollment for the Fall 2020 semester. This will streamline required approval processes that were put into effect to ensure compliance with tax laws on graduate-credit courses, and will make TAP enrollment easier for all participants.
· Updated form lets TAP and TRP participants include multiple courses using a single form (when taken at same institution.)
· Manager/supervisor signature is no longer required for undergraduate courses and certificate/licensing programs
· Participants will receive a PDF copy of completed form for their records
· When an employee indicates that a graduate-credit course meets the IRS-standard of job-relatedness, a PDF of the form along with a link to a job-relatedness attestation approval form will automatically be sent to the participant’s manager/supervisor for approval
If you have previously saved or bookmarked a link for any Tuition Program forms, DO NOT use that link as it may be to an outdated form. Instead, follow the steps here. Please contact Benefits at 617-496-4001, or by email at if you have further questions, or visit the Tuition Assistance page on HARVie.

Commuter Benefits - MASCO

MASCO has the following CommuteWorks Programs, which are free benefits available to all LMA employees.
LMA Shuttles
Ride most shuttles for free with your employee ID to Ruggles, JFK/UMASS, and Yawkey stations and points in between. Download the TransLoc mobile app for real-time tracking.
Emergency Ride Home
Receive up to 5 free Lyft rides home per year in the case of a personal or family emergency if you walk, bike, take public transit, carpool or vanpool to work.
Interested in trying the T? We can help you put your parking space on hold and provide you with an $85 LinkPass or $130 commuter rail pass to try the T for up to three months. Cancel at any time.
CommuteFlex is geared towards people who would like to save money by sharing their commute to work but are worried that they will have to sacrifice their flexibility. Once you've found someone to share your commute with, CommuteWorks will give your group credit for 4 Lyft rides per month.
CommuteFit is a fun incentive program that rewards LMA commuters who include walking, running, or biking in their daily commutes.
MBTA Service Feedback
Tell us about your experience using the MBTA. We meet regularly with the MBTA in order to improve transportation to the LMA.
Bicycle Resources
We provide maps and information about Blue Bikes, Park&Pedal, Boston Bikes and more.
Additional Benefits
Zipcar Discount
Refer-A-Friend: Earn a $25 gift card if you refer a friend to select programs.

The Harvard Bridge Program
- The Harvard Bridge Program offers noncredit professional development classes specifically designed to help postdocs improve their pronunciation and communication skills. Our classes are customized to meet our students’ individual needs. Courses are offered in the fall and spring, and are currently being offered in a virtual format. Benefits-eligible postdocs who receive a pay check from Harvard are eligible for the classes. For more information or to schedule an assessment of your needs please email: or call 617-496-2216  (please note corrected phone number)

Harvard's International SOS Travel Assistance Program
- Harvard's International SOS (I-SOS) provides 24-hour, worldwide emergency medical care and security evacuation services when traveling abroad. Postdocs traveling on University/School business or related activities to their professional work at HMS are covered. Please note, personal travel, including vacations or travel home to visit family is NOT covered. Visit Harvard's Risk Management site for more information and to sign-up.

Harvard's Global Entry Program
Update 1/5/2020: Unfortunately, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has cancelled our on-campus Global Entry enrollment events due to staffing priorities.
For now, CBP has suspended all offsite Global Entry enrollment events like ours. CBP has also reduced their interview staff at Boston Logan Airport. We expect this will lead to increased wait times for interviews. There's a backlog of 350,000 applications.
Do you travel abroad often for the University?  Go through U.S. Customs faster with Global Entry Trusted Traveler! To save you time and hassle, Harvard Global Support Services (GSS) has arranged to host a special enrollment event for faculty and staff to apply for the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Global Entry program. Global Entry enables expedited passage through customs at U.S. airports. Visit the Global Entry Program's website for details on enrolling.