Office of Postdoctoral Affairs

Welcome to the UNLV Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (OPA). The mission of the OPA is to enhance and support postdoctoral training and career development; serve as the central resource office for postdoctoral questions and issues for faculty, supervisors, mentors, and prospective and current postdocs; build a community for all UNLV postdocs; work towards ensuring that UNLV postdocs feel part of the UNLV community; and provide professional development programs, research events, and networking events for postdocs.

Prospective & New Postdocs

What is a Postdoc?: Postdoctoral Appointments at UNLV

Postdoc Appointments

A postdoctoral appointment is a temporary specialized education and training position in research, teaching, performance, or scholarship. It is established for the continued education and professional growth of the candidate. The appointment is under the direction of faculty sponsor(s) and it can be in any discipline or academic unit on campus. Below is important information on the appointment terms of postdoctoral scholars, according to the Board of Regents Handbook (Title 4, Chapter 7, Sections 5 – 7), and the UNLV Top Tier Postdoctoral Scholar Committee.

Minimum Appointment Percentage

A Postdoctoral appointment must be of at least 50 percent FTE (BOR Handbook: Title 4, Chapter 7, Section 5).

Minimum and Maximum Length of a Postdoctoral Position

The minimum length of a postdoctoral position is usually one year, while 2 or 3 years is typical, and 4 or 5 years is not customary. NSHE does not allow postdocs over 5 years (Title 4, Chapter 7, Section 6). Research positions that do not meet this requirement should be established using other available employment types and recruitment strategies.

Degree Requirements for a Postdoctoral Scholar Appointment

Completion of a doctoral degree in the appropriate or related discipline is required.

Minimum Base Salary Policy

The minimum allowable base salary through UNLV’s HR is $42,800. However, the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs recommends a minimum salary of $50,000 based on the National Postdoctoral Association.

Postdoctoral Scholar Benefits

Below we provide a snapshot of Postdoctoral Scholar benefits at UNLV. For additional information, please visit the UNLV Human Resources Benefits webpage or check-out the specific links below.

  • Health Insurance Plans: UNLV’s group health plan offers a comprehensive medical package that includes your choice of health insurance plan, dental, vision, prescription, a $25,000 term life insurance plan, and long-term disability insurance.
  • Family and Dependent Coverage: When you enroll in a university health plan, you can also elect coverage for your family or dependents.
  • Retirement Plans: All university employees, including postdoctoral scholars, are required to participate in a mandatory retirement plan in lieu of Social Security. Postdocs are enrolled in a mandatory defined contribution 403(b) retirement plan beginning on their date of hire. Under the terms of this retirement plan, employees must contribute 6.2% of their gross salary to the plan and the employer also makes a matching 6.2% contribution.
  • Annual Time Off: Postdoctoral scholars receive 1.25 days of annual leave each month. Time off requests (Annual, Sick, etc.) are submitted through Workday.
  • Holidays: University employees receive 11 paid holidays. Holiday leave is paid time off.
  • Sick Leave: Postdoctoral scholars receive 15 days of sick leave the first day of employment. After one year, they accrue 1.25 days of sick leave each month. Sick leave is paid time off.
  • Parental Leave Policy: There is not a specific University parental leave policy for Postdoctoral Scholars. As a compensated employee, postdocs would be eligible for Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Leave if they meet the criteria of working for the institution for at least 12 months and have worked at least 1,250 hours in the past 12 months. Additional information on FMLA can be found here. Postdocs could also apply for an ADA accommodation if 1) they do not qualify for FMLA and 2) the request is for their own medical condition. Spouses would not qualify for an ADA accommodation. Additional information can be found here.
  • Grant-In Aid: Grants-in-aid for tuition and fees will not be provided by the NSHE institution. Postdoctoral Scholars with appointments of half time or more, along with the spouse and dependent children, will not be charged out of state tuition.
  • Jury Duty: Nevada statue NRS 6.190 prohibits employers from terminating or threatening to terminate employees for jury duty. Title 4, Chapter 3, Section 23 of the BOR Handbook states that “Judicial leave also will be granted to serve on a jury or when summoned to be a witness.” UNLV also has a policy of paid leave for employees who are serving on a jury or as a court witness. Thus, postdoctoral scholars cannot be terminated or threatened to be terminated if they have jury duty. Postdocs should let their supervisor know as soon as possible of up-coming jury duty services. For additional information, please see the Board of Regents Handbook, UNLV’s Human Resources Jury Duty, Civil Leave, and Military Leave page, and Nevada Administrative Code, Rules for Personnel Administration, Classified Employees.
  • Civil Leave (Voting): UNLV grants all employees paid time off to vote. The amount of time you receive to vote depends on the distance between the polling place and the university. With prior supervisory approval, NRS 293.463 permits employees to use “civil leave” to the extent reasonably necessary to vote, when it is not “practical” for employees to vote on their own time. Postdoctoral scholars fall under this policy. If you anticipate the need to use any work time to vote, you need to talk with your supervisor in advance. Supervisors are encouraged to work with employees to provide reasonable opportunity to vote (and may not unreasonably withhold approval for civil leave). For additional information, please see Board of Regents Handbook, UNLV’s Human Resources Jury Duty, Civil Leave, and Military Leave page, and Nevada Administrative Code, Rules for Personnel Administration, Classified Employees.

How to Apply for a Postdoctoral Position at UNLV?

Postdoctoral Scholar Eligibility

In order to qualify for an appointment as a Postdoctoral Scholar, the individual must:

  • Provide evidence of completion of a doctoral degree

Applying for a Postdoctoral Scholar Position

To apply for a UNLV Postdoctoral Scholar position:

  1. Find an opening by visiting UNLV’s Current Openings webpage and selecting View Administrative Faculty Openings. Once you are on the Search for Jobs webpage, select Postdoctoral Scholar under Job Category. We also recommend looking at professional and/or academic bulletins within your discipline or closely related discipline. UNLV department, program, and research centers and institutes web pages are great resources for identifying appropriate supervisors/mentors.
  2. Submit an application to the appropriate position through UNLV’s online application system.

All correspondence regarding any potential openings, the application for any such openings, and one’s status must be directed to the prospective supervisor/mentor in question. In conjunction with the department/unit, the supervisor/mentor is responsible for determining if there is a match with both the applicant and area of interest and for facilitating the appointment in regard to financial resource allocations and space.

Resources on Picking a Postdoc Position and Finding a Mentor

Payday

Postdoctoral scholars are paid on the first business day of each month. In the event that a pay date falls on a weekend or holiday, pay distribution will be made on the first business day after the weekend or holiday.

Onboarding Process

For a snapshot of the onboarding process, please see the brief Onboarding checklist, which provides guidance on things to know prior to your first day and what tasks should be completed when (e.g., your first few days at UNLV, your first month, your first few months, your first six months, and your first year).

Please see UNLV’s Human Resources New Employee Onboarding webpage for additional details regarding the onboarding process.

Trainings & Orientations for New UNLV Postdocs

HR Benefit Orientation Dates

All new postdocs or postdocs who are newly benefits eligible should attend a benefits orientation session as soon as possible after their contract begins. New benefits-eligible employees will be automatically scheduled to attend the New Employee Orientation during their first week of employment. If you do not receive a scheduling confirmation during your first week, please contact University Human Resources at 702-895-3504 or hrbenefits@unlv.edu to register.

HR Benefits Enrollment Class

All newly hired full-time faculty and staff are required to attend the new-hire benefits enrollment class. By attending the benefits enrollment class, you will complete all the necessary forms to process your benefits. Please the Benefits Enrollment Class webpage for additional information, including class times.

New Faculty Orientation

New Faculty Orientation is part of the university’s welcoming and onboarding of new faculty. The event is held every August. As a result, you can attend if you are a brand-new postdoc or have been on campus for several months. It is designed to introduce postdocs and other new faculty to important information and campus resources to assist you in your career at UNLV. In addition, the orientation enables you to meet other new faculty, senior faculty, and campus administrators. For additional information, please see the New Faculty Orientation webpage.

Las Vegas Highlights

New Las Vegas Residents Essentials

Las Vegas is a vibrant, inclusive city that offers excellent amenities. If you are a new to the city, please check out LasVegasNevada.Gov’s New Residents webpage for information on these services (e.g., register to vote, city maps, history of Las Vegas, neighborhood services, Department of Motor Vehicles, electric power and service, natural gas services, etc.).

Current Postdocs

Welcome Letter

Postdoctoral Email Listserv

The OPA adds all postdocs to our postdoctoral email listserv in order to build a sense of community and to easily disseminate announcements about social activities, events, news, and other pertinent information.

Graduate Faculty Status

Postdoctoral scholars at UNLV are encouraged to apply for Graduate Faculty Status. Graduate Faculty Status allows individuals to be eligible to teach graduate courses, mentor/advise students, and serve on Graduate Advisory Committees (GACs).

Please note that these privileges are not automatic and must be granted by the Graduate College upon application; Postdoctoral scholars’ eligibility is dependent on their qualifications and approval by their department/school, College Dean, and Graduate Dean.

GFS privileges will be organized as follows:

  • GAC Member All Levels – And all privileges below
  • GAC Chair Master’s Only – And all privileges below
  • GAC Member Master’s Only – And all privileges below
  • Graduate Instructor 1 -- Teaching all levels and may be an extra GAC member
  • Graduate Instructor 2 --- Teaching Master’s students only and may be an extra GAC member
  • Extra GAC Member only

Please note that Grad Faculty Status expires every 5 years and that Postdoctoral Scholars are not eligible to be Graduate College Representatives.

iThenticate

iThenticate is an internet based service that allows you to scan your own research, grant proposals, article drafts, and professional papers for missed citations and other mistakes that could be characterized as plagiarism, thereby protecting the integrity of your scholarship and your professional reputation. Postdoctoral scholars are provided complimentary accounts by the UNLV Graduate College. For additional information, including how to get access, please visit the UNLV Graduate College's iThenticate webpage.

Campus Resources

  • Student Union: The Student Union offers various conveniences and amenities, including a food court and meeting rooms.
  • UNLV Libraries
  • University Gateway Building: The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs is located on the second floor of the University Gateway Building.
  • The Postdoctoral Scholar and Graduate Faculty Commons: The Postdoctoral Scholar and Graduate Faculty Commons is located on the second floor of the University Gateway Building. It is open Monday – Friday, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm, with drop-in workstations for postdocs and faculty to use. These are great spots if you need a change of venue for some inspiration, a place to hide out and finish a project, and/or work space to use before or after other meetings you may have in the Gateway Building.
  • Office of International Students and Scholars: International Postdocs should contact this office, which assists with employment applications and eligibility verification, visa and travel issues, and immigration advising and documents.
  • Nonresident Alien Tax Support: UNLV has a Nonresident Alien Tax Specialist who can assist international scholars with taxes. Email nrat@unlv.edu.
  • Rebelcard: The RebelCard is the official UNLV ID. It can be used at the library, health and recreation wellness center (FAST clinic and gym), and many other facilities on campus. Money can also be deposited on the card (called RebelCash), which can be used at participating locations on and off campus. If you use RebelCash at on-campus dining locations, you do not have to pay sales tax on your purchase.
  • This handy interactive UNLV map and parking website is an excellent tool to help you find your way around campus.
  • Parking & Transportation Services: If you plan to drive on campus, you will need a parking permit. These can be purchased by the semester, the academic year, or the calendar year. If you park on campus without the appropriate permit, you will get a ticket. Parking is enforced 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. Monday – Thursday and 7 a.m. – 1 p.m. Friday during the calendar school year. During the summer months parking enforcement hours are from 7 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 7 a.m. – 1 p.m. on Friday. Parking is not enforced on the weekends.

Wellness Resources on Campus

  • FAST (Faculty and Staff Treatment) Center provides fast and convenient access to medical care for UNLV employees and their dependents (5 years of age and older).
  • UNLV Pharmacy serves UNLV students, faculty, staff, postdocs, and faculty/staff dependents and strives to offer low, competitive prices on many prescriptions and over-the-counter medicine.
  • Dental Clinic: The UNLV School of Dental Medicine operates several clinical programs, including on the Shadow Lane Campus and the Student Recreation and Wellness Center.
  • UNLV Nutrition Center provides evidence-based nutrition education, including classes and workshops.
  • Recreation and Wellness Center offers a variety of opportunities and experiences to promote a healthy lifestyle, including: indoor jogging track, 6-lane, 25 yard lap pool, cardio equipment, strength equipment, functional trainers, free weights, personal training and group exercise, intramural sports, swim lessons, and open recreation opportunities. Postdoctoral scholars need to pay a monthly fee to become a member.
  • The PRACTICE is a mental & behavioral health resource to the entire campus community, including postdocs. They have special rates for NSHE students, employees and their dependents.
  • UNLV Food Pantry: The year-round UNLV Food Pantry provides non-perishable items to any students, classified staff, professional staff, and faculty who need additional food items. It is located on the UNLV Paradise Campus (851 E. Tropicana Avenue) in Building 600, near the Bock Street and Radkovich Avenue intersection.

Professional Development Workshops and Training

Workshops and training are hosted by members of the UNLV community and cover a broad range of areas from academic and professional topics to personal skills. Please see the Postdoctoral Scholar Calendar for a list of events and workshops each semester.

Additional resources for postdocs include:

UNLV Funding Sources to Assist with Conference Travel, Research, and Publishing

Article Processing Charges: UNLV Open Article Fund

The UNLV University Libraries offers funding to assist UNLV researchers seeking to publish in open access journals. More information and the form can be found on the University Library website.

University Faculty Travel Committee Travel Fund

University Faculty Travel Committee (UFTC) travel fund provides funding toward academic faculty members' travel to attend conferences, conduct research at external sites, etc. Postdocs are eligible to receive funding. The maximum award is $1,000 per academic year. Please view the website for additional details.

College/Department-Level Travel/Research/Publication Funds

Please also check with your college/department to see if they have funds available to postdocs for travel, research, publication, and/or other scholarly activities.

Resources

Resources for International Postdocs

The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs and the Office of International Scholars and Students (OISS) are available to help international postdocs acclimate to life in Las Vegas and to being a postdoc in the U.S. International postdocs should contact OISS, which assists with employment applications and eligibility verification, visa and travel issues, and immigration advising and documents.

The National Postdoctoral Association has excellent resources for international postdocs as well, including the International Postdoc Survival Guide, a quick guide to visas, a white paper on visa reforms, important US Government links, a list of international grants and fellows, training plans (I-983 Forms), a quick guide to income taxes, among other helpful resources.

Resources for UNLV Postdoc Mentors/Supervisors

Additional Resources