Employee Total Rewards

Total Rewards Overview and Compensation Philosophy

This benefits overview page is intended as a general description of the benefit plans and programs available to Colorado School of Mines employees. The amount and availability of benefits are governed by one or more of the following:  plan documents for each plan, state statute, state personnel rules, or Mines policies and procedures.  Any conflict between the content of this overview shall be governed by applicable plan documents, statutes, rules, policies and procedures.  Colorado School of Mines reserves the right to modify, suspend or terminate these benefits at any time to the extent permitted by law. This information does not constitute an agreement of employment or guarantee any particular benefit.


Mines is a top of mind, nationally recognized university, Colorado School of Mines utilizes a compensation philosophy that positions total rewards offerings (direct salary and indirect benefits) to be market competitive within higher education. This combination of rewards is key to attracting, developing, and retaining the diverse workforce needed to fulfill the vision, mission, values, and strategic goals of the University.  In addition, Mines prides itself on having a comprehensive benefits program that includes robust health and wellness benefits for all employees.

Colorado School of Mines champions equitable, market-driven, competitive pay practices within an established set of guiding principles:

  • Market Competitive Pay: Compensation for all employees in-line with the relevant labor market for work performed.
  • Pay Program Equity: Administer compensation programs to be internally fair and equitable across similarly situated positions and use the six compensable factors in the CO Equal Pay for Equal Work Act. Mines maintains a commitment to nondiscrimination, affirmative action, equal opportunity and equal access as reflected in the administration of its policies, procedures, programs and activities and in its efforts to achieve a diverse student body and workforce.
  • Program Flexibility: Mines’ compensation programs are designed to be agile in relation to evolving market trends, talent supply, and best practices.
  • Pay Communication: Communicate openly with employees about their salary range, compensation, and total rewards value proposition. Post all jobs with hiring ranges in accordance with the CO Equal Pay for Equal Work Act.


The compensation program is reviewed annually to adjust as other factors and emerging trends arise and to ensure ongoing equity and market competitiveness. 


As a Mines employee, you are eligible to participate in a wide range of benefits. Many benefits are the same among all employment classifications, but some depend on the type of position you hold and percentage of full time.

Benefits Office Hours

Monday – Thursday 11am – 1pm

We offer in person or virtual benefits counseling by appointment only. Please review the Total Rewards webpage prior to your appointment. If you are classified, please visit the State of Colorado Benefit page.

We also offer a weekly virtual meeting on electing/changing benefits in Workday every Friday from 10am- 11am MST.


Summary of Benefits

Colorado State Employee Assistance Program: Services & Training

C-SEAP provides a multitude of services to state employees.  You can find more information by checking out their website.


C-SEAP webinars are open to all employees though some information may seem more relevant to managers, supervisors, and HR staff.  Webinars are free-of-charge, available on a first-come first-served basis, and some may be provided as an on-site presentation.

Please visit their website to register for webinars and find other tools/resources including information about workplace traumas or critical incidents, reasonable suspicion, and descriptions of CSEAP services


2024 Step Pay Program

2024 Step Pay Program for State of Colorado Employees

To learn more about the Step Pay Program, click here.


988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline

988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline

Need Support Now?

If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available. Call or text 988 or chat 988lifeline.org

The resources and information on this site https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/988 are designed to help states, territories, tribes, mental health and substance use disorder professionals, and others looking for information on understanding the background, history, funding opportunities, and implementation resources for strengthening suicide prevention and mental health crisis services.



Mines does not participate in the Social Security program. In lieu of Social Security, most non-student employees must enroll in either the Mines Defined Contribution Plan (MDCP) or the Colorado Public Employees Retirement Association (PERA). Each plan has specific eligibility requirements. Both of these plans are mandatory and employees do not have the option to opt out. Employee contribution is set to 11% as of 2023.

FACULTY MEMBERS (Academic, Administrative, Research, Library, and Athletics)

Mines Defined Contribution Plan (MDCP) Corebridge Financial:

Most new faculty members hired January 1, 2017 and later qualify for enrollment in the Mines Defined Contribution Plan (MDCP).  Employees and Mines will both make fixed contributions to the plan. Employees have a variety of independent investment options to choose from.  Recordkeeping services and free financial advising are provided through Corebridge Financial Services. (Click to see MDCP SPD Summary

Link to Corebridge (https://www.corebridgefinancial.com/rs)

Click here to schedule a virtual meeting or phone appointment. 

Colorado PERA

New Mines faculty members hired January 1, 2017 and later may elect enrollment in the Colorado PERA Defined Benefit Plan in lieu of the MDCP if they have a least one year of Colorado PERA Defined Benefit Plan service credit. Mines faculty members hired before January 1, 2017, who did not make an MDCP election during the special 2017 election period are also Colorado PERA members. For more information please see the Colorado PERA website.

Link to Colorado PERA: (www.copera.org)


Impact of PERA Changes: SB-200

Automatic Adjustment Provision


State of Colorado classified staff are provided two options for their retirement plan:

Defined Benefit Plan
Defined Contribution Plan

PERA choice sign up form is available via Workday.

Employees have 60 days to choose or they will be defaulted to the Defined Benefit Plan.

Link to Colorado PERA (www.copera.org)

Link to schedule a virtual webinar if you are a new hire or ready for retirement (https://www.copera.org/webinars)

Link to FAQs ( https://www.copera.org/pera-frequently-asked-questions)

For employees looking to save money for retirement in addition to the maditory contribution, Mines offers several options. Participation in these plans is voluntary and employees can enroll, change contribution amounts, or end participation at any time.

Mines 403(b) Plan

The Mines 403(b) plan offers investment in a variety of independent mutual funds, as well as, a self-directed brokerage option. The plan offers both a traditional pre-tax account and a Roth Option. Services including free financial advising are provided through Corebridge Financial Services. For more information please contact Corebridge Financial Advisors (information below). To enroll in the 403(b) or change contribution amounts please log in to Workday.

Email: courtney.watson@corebridgefinancial.com

Telephone: 719-396-4647

Email: julianne.butler@aig.com

Telephone: 720-636-5239   720-962-8000 (District Offices)

PERAPlus Program

This program is open to employees regardless of eligibility to participate in the PERA Defined Benefit Plan. The PERAPlus program offers both 401(k) plan and 457 plan options. Both traditional pre-tax and Roth options are available. For more information please see the PERAPlus website at:

Link to PERAPlus: (Click here)

Enrollment in the PERAPlus 401(k) and 457 voluntary retirement savings plans is available at any time. Both plans offer the same PERAdvantage investment options and Empower Retirement is the recordkeeper for both plans.

All beneficiary assignments for retirement are directly made in Corebridge or PERA.


Notice to Employer of Injury

If you are injured on the job, you have rights under the Colorado Workers’ Compensation Act.




CollegeInvest is a not-for-profit State of Colorado agency. Advantages of participating in the CollegeInvest 529 Plan include:

  • Contributions are deductible on your Colorado State Income Tax Return
  • Earnings grow federal and state tax free
  • A variety of investment choices are available including a FDIC insured account
  • Set-up monthly contributions via Mines direct deposit
  • No restrictions on who can contribute, the number of accounts or beneficiary

More information is available on CollegeInvest’s website.

Benefits for Eligible Employees

Bright Horizons Care Advantage

Full & Part Time Mines faculty and staff have access to subsidized, low-cost, child, adult, and elder care through Bright Horizons Care Advantage® This program offers high-quality care when your regular family care arrangements fall through.  Simply register and when you need care either request care online, through the app, or 24/7 by calling the Bright Horizons contact center. The program also offers self-serve resources to arrange ongoing childcare, babysitters, elder care and pet care.

Paid Holidays

Colorado School of Mines observes 12 holidays.  Mines observes an alternate holiday schedule, which generally provides employees time off between Christmas and New Year’s, as well as other holidays throughout the year.

See more information on paid holidays by checking out the Mines Holiday Calendar.

Leave Sharing Bank Program

Any employee of the Colorado School of Mines with at least one year of service is eligible to participate in the Leave Sharing Bank Program.  

Employees may donate annual leave to be used by a qualifying employee experiencing a catastrophic medical hardship, either personally or by an immediate family member, in order to provide some income protection when the employee would be absent from work for a prolonged period of time and has exhausted all annual and sick leave.  For more information please contact the Benefits Manager at extension 3052.

Employee Tuition Waiver

Colorado School of Mines employees may apply to take one 3.0 credit hour class per semester, up to a total of 6.0 credits per academic year, and have tuition and fees waived for those courses other than a technology fee associated with course registration. Courses may be taken for credit or not-for-credit (audit). To take classes, the employee must apply as a Non-Degree Seeking student and note the class he or she wishes to register for on the application.

Feel free to find more information on the Registrar’s Office website regarding Employee Tuition Waivers.

Mines Dependent Tuition Reduction Benefit
Dependents of eligible employees may attend Colorado School of Mines at a reduced tuition rate.  The amount of the tuition reduction under this benefit is up to 50 percent of in-state tuition. In compliance with I.R.S. rules, the benefit applies to undergraduates only.

Wellness Fair

Mines Wellness Fair

Save the Date!

The 2023 Wellness Fair is November 9th from 8am-2pm in the Student Center Ballrooms A, B. and C.   Hope to see you then!

Employee Relief Fund

Employee Relief Rund

Visit the Employee Relief Fund page for more information.