Employee Tuition Benefit Request and Manager Approval: Process Update

Under University Policy 7.11  SMU will cover the cost of tuition for up to 18 credit hours per academic year under the following guidelines:

  • Full-time, benefits-eligible employees must meet all of the standard requirements for admission to the University and be admitted to the University in a credit-bearing, degree-granting program.
  • Full-time, benefits-eligible employees are eligible for 100% tuition and a waiver of the general student fee for part-time undergraduate or graduate study.  Admission deposits, travel, materials and lab fees, or other costs of attending SMU are not covered by the benefit.
  • Tuition benefits may result in taxable income.  Employees are encouraged to seek advice concerning possible tax liabilities they may incur as a result of participation in the Tuition Benefits program.
  • No more than 18 semester hours of study for academic credit may be taken using this benefit during an academic year (fall through summer terms).
  • Supervisor approval is required in order for an employee to attend class during regular working hours.  Upon the supervisor’s approval, an alternative work schedule should be established.
  • The staff supervisor or head of the division for faculty appointments is notified of approval for each academic term of the employee’s eligibility and enrollment.
  • Staff must be employed in a position which requires at least nine (9) months of full-time service each year and must work at least 35 hours per week in order to be eligible for tuition benefit

To ensure clarity around work expectations during the term, managers are strongly encouraged to have a conversation with their employee about balancing work and academic responsibilities. 

How the New Process Works

Managers will now receive an email once the employee submits a Tuition Benefit request via my. SMU.  The email will contain instructions on how to electronically approve or deny the employee’s request.

Approvals must be submitted within 10 business days of notification in order for the employee’s tuition benefits to be processed in a timely manner.

Instructions on the approval process can also be found below.

  1. Log in to SMU.edu.
  2. Navigate to Manager Self Service by clicking on the Home Page drop-down at the top of the page.
  3. Click on the Tuition Benefits Mgr Approval Tile.
  4. This page will provide a list of all current Tuition Benefit requests from your direct reports that require your approval.
  5.  Select Approved or Denied in the drop-down box under the “Approval Status” column for each employee who has requested Tuition Benefits and click Save.

Any questions or concerns should be directed to TuitionBenefits@smu.edu


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