College Faculty More Confident Regarding Retirement Savings Than General Working Population, Survey Finds
TIAA-CREF, the financial services organization, released in October the findings from the first-ever “Retirement Confidence Survey of College and University Faculty.” The survey shows that faculty in higher education are more confident regarding their retirement savings preparations than individuals in the general working population.
“The retirement savings challenges facing America are well known — low personal savings rates, low participation in employer-sponsored retirement plans, large unfunded liabilities in defined benefit plans and a serious funding challenge for our Social Security system,” says Madeleine d’Ambrosio, vice president and executive director of TIAA-CREF. “Against this backdrop, higher education retirement systems stand out as success stories, though not without challenges.”
According to the survey, conducted by the Employee Benefit Research Institute, Mathew Greenwald & Associates Inc. and TIAA-CREF, among higher education faculty, 35 percent are very confident in their retirement income prospects and an additional 51 percent are somewhat confident.
Sixty-five percent of respondents expect employer-sponsored retirement plans to be their largest source of retirement income. Almost 95 percent of faculty have personally saved money for retirement and 66 percent have tried to determine how much they need to save so they can afford a comfortable retirement.
By comparison, only 25 percent of all working Americans say that they are very confident that they will have enough money for retirement, while an additional 40 percent are somewhat confident. Only 69 percent of all working Americans have begun to save for retirement and only 42 percent have tried to determine how much they need to save for retirement.
A representative sample of all college and university faculty was surveyed by telephone between March and May 2005; 1,307 individuals were surveyed. These individuals are faculty members at both private and public institutions and both two-year and four-year institutions. Part-time as well as full-time faculty were surveyed, and both tenure-track and non-tenure-track faculty were included.
For a more in-depth report on the findings from the survey, visit <www.tiaa-crefinstitute.org>.
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