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An array of benefits are available to postdoctoral scholars working at Stony Brook University. There are different plans offered depending on your title and your employer. For questions on your benefits, contact Human Resources.

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Employee postdocs will have a different benefits plan depending on whether their employer is the Research Foundation at Stony Brook University (RF Postdocs) or the State of New York (State postdocs). Employee benefit plans typically include individual and family health insurance, retirement options, and other benefits. Your employer and appointment title should be indicated in your offer letter. The vast majority of postdocs working at SBU are hired and paid from standard research grants, and so are RF postdocs.

New employee postdocs will be invited to either an RF or State new employee orientation that will explain employee benefits options and how to enroll. State postdocs should be mindful when choosing a retirement plan that some of their options are designed for long-term permanent employees staying at SBU for ten years or more. All postdocs are also invited to   New Postdoc Welcome, which is an orientation held every quarter by the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (OPA). Contact OPA at for more information. 

State Employee Benefits

RF Employee Benefits


Postdoc Fellows are supported by a fellowship or training grant or other external sources of trainee stipend funding and are not RF or State employees. Postdocs in the title Postdoctoral Fellow who receive their stipend through university payroll (e.g., NIH NRSA fellows) should consult the Stony Brook  Fellow Health Insurance page for information on health benefits. Postdoc Fellows who receive their fellowship money directly from the funder (so called "direct-paid postdoc fellows," for example, NSF postdoctoral fellows) may not qualify for the Fellows' health plan and are strongly encouraged to contact the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs. 

Note: Postdoctoral Fellows who hold a J VISA are not eligible for the Fellow health insurance plans and are advised to contact  Visa and Immigration Services for more information on the International Students and Scholars Health Insurance Plan .

Fellow Health Insurance Enrollment

International Students and Scholars Health Insurance Plan

All postdocs, independent of funding source or employer, are also invited to   New Postdoc Welcome, which is an orientation held every quarter by the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (OPA). Contact OPA at for more information. 


Postdocs who may need to take leave for family-related purposes during their tenure at Stony Brook should review their  leave options and short-term disability for their respective employment type. Stony Brook offers Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) unpaid leave for eligible RF and State employees. For employees, New York now has a new paid leave program, New York State Paid Family Leave, that supports leaves for purposes such as: birth, adoption, fostering, family illness. It works through payroll deduction and can cover partial salary for up to 8 weeks. The program covers up to 67% salary in steady state. RF employee postdocs started receiving this benefit Jan 1, 2018, and State postdocs are expected to receive it Jan 1, 2019 (pending UUP contract approval). Family leaves may also be eligible to be supplemented with accrued annual and sick leave. For more information on leave, employees should talk to Human Resources.

Postdoc Fellows should consult the terms of their fellowship or training grant for leave options.


Postdocs and their spouses are eligible for memberships to the Walter J. Hawrys Campus Recreation Center . Postdoc Fellows should bring a letter from their department to demonstrate their campus affiliation. RF postdocs may also be eligible for an   insurance reimbursement for the membership fees  (see the RF benefits manual on  Gym Membership Reimbursement  for more details). 

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