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New Employees

New employees should contact the Human Resources Department (HRD) to arrange an appointment to receive information on payroll and benefits issues on or before the first day of employment.  Supervisors may wish to arrange such an appointment prior to the arrival of the employee.

New employees will be asked to complete a W-4 Form, a Personal Data Form, an "I-9" Form and other material at that time.  The "I-9" Form is a certification of eligibility for employment in the United States and must be completed by all new employees and by employees who have had an interruption in service that is greater than three years.  This procedure is required because of the Federal Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986.  The "I-9" must be completed during the first three days of employment, and all original documentation of employment eligibility must be examined by a member of HRD. If the documentation is incomplete or otherwise fails to establish an employee's entitlement to employment, the College must immediately terminate the employee's employment.  Failure to comply with this law can result in substantial fines for the College.

During the orientation appointment, new employees also receive informational brochures about available insurance plans, the retirement plan and other benefits.

To help new employees keep track of documentation that must be provided or obtained during the first week of employment, HRD has prepared the following checklist.

New Employee Checklist

  • Schedule and attend an orientation appointment in HRD.
  • Complete a W-4 Form.
  • Complete a Personal Data Form.
  • Complete an I-9 Form and provide all original documentation to          establish employment eligibility (within three days of hire date).
  • Obtain an employee parking decal and ID card, at the Department of Public Safety, 1st Floor, Campus Center.
  • Read available insurance plan brochures.
  • Enroll in the insurance plans of your choice.
  • Review this Employee Handbook. 
  • Follow account creation process at Tech Help

If you have any questions, contact the Human Resources Department at extension 5598.

Orientation Session

Orientation sessions for new employees will be held at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters and as needed during the year. These sessions introduce new employees to the services provided by different divisions of the College, explain campus-wide projects, present the College's Strategic Plan and give an overview of technology and service issues pertinent to certain employee groups.

Employee Categories

Each full-time employee falls into one of five categories. Policies relating to benefits, periods of leave, appointment and other aspects of employment are set forth in the collective bargaining agreement or State College Employee Benefits Handbook which applies to each employee category.

Employee Categor

Applicable Agreement/Handbook

Unit Classified 

AFSCME Agreement 

Non-Unit Classified 

State College Employee Benefits Handbook for Non-Unit Classified Personnel


MSCA/MTA Agreement 

Non-Unit (Excluded) Professional Administrator

Excluded Executive and Professional Employees Conditions of Employment

Unit Professional Administrators

APA Agreement 

Union Membership

Representatives of a bargaining unit will contact new employees during the initial months of employment.  Employees can obtain copies of collective bargaining agreements from union representatives.


Full-time faculty and professional librarians are covered by a collective bargaining agreement between the Department of Higher Education and the Massachusetts Teachers Association/Massachusetts State College Association (MSCA).  A Union representative will provide information regarding membership, benefits, dues and other Union business.  All faculty members and professional librarians must either join the union and pay assessed dues or pay an agency service fee.


Full-time administrators, except those excluded because of the level and nature of their positions, are covered by a collective bargaining agreement between the Department of Higher Education and the Association of Professional Administrators (APA). A union representative will provide information regarding membership, benefits, dues and other union business to those administrators who are covered by the collective bargaining agreement. Administrators (except those excluded) must either join the union and pay assessed dues or pay an agency service fee.

Classified Employees

Classified employees, except those excluded because of the confidential nature of their positions, are covered by a collective bargaining agreement between the Department of Higher Education and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO.  A union representative will provide information regarding membership, benefits, dues and other Union business to those administrators who are covered by the collective bargaining agreement. Classified employees (except those excluded) must either join the union and pay assessed dues or pay an agency service fee.

Probationary And Provisional Employment

All full-time appointments to positions at the College are subject to the approval and policies of the Board of Trustees; to the general laws, rules and regulations of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts; to the policies, rules and regulations of the Department of Higher Education; to the terms and conditions of current collective bargaining agreements or Non-Unit Conditions of Employment; and to the availability of funding for the position.  Positions at the College are not included in the Massachusetts Civil Service System.

Probationary Period - Classified Employees

Pursuant to Article 27 of the AFSCME contract, all classified employees newly appointed to a position in the bargaining unit must serve a seven-month probationary period.  Probationary employees receive two performance evaluations during this period.  The College may terminate or discipline a classified employee at anytime during the probationary period.

Probationary Period - Professional Employees

Pursuant to Article 8, Section A of the APA contract, every administrator appointed to a position in the bargaining unit (APA) shall serve on a provisional basis for one calendar year from the date on which he/she shall have first commenced his/her duties in such position.  In the case of any administrator so appointed but whose annual term of service is less than 12 months, such calendar year shall be the entire calendar year, commencing with the first date of such employment.  Further information on employment terms is found in the APA Agreement.

Excluded Employees

Employees who are not represented by a collective bargaining organization are employed for an indefinite term and those employees may terminate their employment at any time, with or without notice. This also means that the College may terminate their employment at any time, with or without notice, and with or without cause, for any reason that does not conflict with applicable federal, state or local laws.  For excluded employees, the College has the sole discretion to define and/or determine your duties, promotion or demotion, salary, relocation and all items regarding their work.


Transfers And Promotions

Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts believes in providing eligible and qualified applicants with every available opportunity to become employed and to advance within Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts' workplace.  The College's job posting process gives employees a means of indicating their interest in advancing to higher-level jobs according to their skills and experience.

A listing of all positions Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts intends to fill is posted on a bulletin board located outside the Human Resources Department (Mark Hopkins Hall, 1st Floor, Room 1), on other employee bulletin boards across the campus, and on the College's web site Each listing will advertise the job duties, eligibility and minimum qualifications for the position, as well as its location.

Employees must complete a separate application form for each position.  Application requirements are listed on the job posting.  Applications must be submitted to the Human Resources Department by the closing date noted on the posting.

For additional information regarding criteria for promotions, and transfers to positions within bargaining units, please see the appropriate collective bargaining agreement.

Personnel Files/Confidentiality

All personnel files and payroll records are maintained under the provisions of the Commonwealth's various privacy protection laws and in accordance with the provisions of applicable collective bargaining agreements.  Employees may obtain access to their files by completing an access request in HRD.  Files must be examined in the presence of a member of HRD staff and cannot be removed from HRD.  Employees may examine references furnished on their behalf only if they did not waive their rights to examine references when they applied for their original position. Union representatives may have access to an employee's personnel file only if authorized by the employee.

Employment Verification And Public Information

HRD will verify past and/or current employment at the College upon receiving a request from a prospective employer or a financial institution.  The policy of the Department is to verify dates of employment, title and basic responsibilities only.  HRD does not give qualitative references.  HRD will not release salary data over the telephone.  Salaries are released in writing to financial institutions when a written request, accompanied by the release signature of the employee, is received. Salary verification forms will be forwarded directly to financial institutions; they will not be returned via the employee.

All employees are advised that, under Massachusetts law, the names, position titles, home addresses, telephone numbers (if listed), and salary data of College employees are public information.  The College releases this information only upon receipt of a valid public record request.

Personal Data Changes

Employees are responsible for insuring that all personal data changes are furnished to HRD. Changes in address, marital status, name, emergency notification information, etc., should be reported promptly.

Employee Development

The College recognizes the importance of the continuous development of skills and knowledge for all employees.

Employees are encouraged to utilize tuition remission benefits to attend classes which will assist them in advancing their careers at the College as provided in the relevant collective bargaining agreements or applicable College policies. See Tuition Remission section.

Full-time faculty and librarians covered by the MSCA agreement are eligible to apply for leave, including sabbatical leave, for the purpose of professional development.  Training programs for classified and professional employees may be coordinated or presented by HRD.  As the College budget allows, professional and classified employees may also be sent to seminars and workshops that relate to their current positions.  For employees covered by collective bargaining agreements, leaves and their availability are described therein and in the Leave Policies section of this handbook.

Performance Evaluations

Classified Staff

With the exception of a probationary employee who will be evaluated at the completion of the first three months of probationary service and again at the completion of the first five months of probationary service, a performance evaluation of an employee shall be made annually by the supervisor within 30 days prior or subsequent to the anniversary date of initial hire or appointment to a present position. The immediate supervisor indicates his/her recommendation for retention or termination of the new employee at that time. Employees promoted or laterally transferred are evaluated at the end of a three-month trial period.


Unit and non-unit Administrators are evaluated at the mid-point and end-point of their provisional service period and then annually in accordance with the procedures outlined in the DHE/APA Agreement (unit administrators) or campus procedures (non-unit administrators)

Faculty and Librarians

Faculty and Librarians are evaluated according to an in-depth procedure as defined in the Department of Higher Education (DHE)/Massachusetts State College Association (MSCA) Collective Bargaining Agreement.

For more specific information about employee evaluations, please refer to your collective bargaining agreement or contact the Human Resources Department.