VCU Optional Retirement Plan (ORP)

The Optional Retirement Plan (ORP) is a defined contribution plan in which eligible VCU faculty may elect to participate in lieu of participating in the Virginia Retirement System (VRS) defined benefit plan (see the glossary of terms under retirement). The university makes a contribution equal to a specified percentage of creditable compensation for ORP participants. The applicable percentage of VCU's contribution depends on the faculty member's hire date, as indicated below:

  • June 30, 2010 or earlier: 10.4 percent
  • July 1, 2010 or later with prior service credit: 10.4 percent
  • July 1, 2010 or later without prior service credit: 8.5 percent   

In addition, faculty hired or rehired July 1, 2010 or later, and without prior service credit, make mandatory contributions of five percent of their semi-monthly salaries to their ORP retirement account. VCU is the plan sponsor for the ORP. As a part of its fiduciary responsibilities, the university established a VCU Investment Committee of faculty and senior administrators who review the investment companies and administer the plan and the investment options offered. The committee conducts an annual review of the plan and the investment options, based on the VCU ORP Investment Policy Statement (IPS). The faculty member selects from one of two providers and decides which of the investment products to use. The retirement benefit is based on contributions plus investment gains or losses, with the total risk borne by the faculty member. ORP faculty may contact their vendors to change investment selections at any time throughout the year. However, they may change between approved VCU ORP vendors only during the annual open enrollment period.

For more information about the plan, view the Optional Retirement Plan Document (PDF).

Approved vendors

TIAA (follow on Facebook)
Fidelity (follow on Facebook)

Approved ORP and cash match funds

See also Performance of Approved Funds ‌ (as of June 30, 2017)

Investment Style



Large Value

TIAA-CREF Large-Cap Value 

MFS Value Fund 


Domestic Index

CREF Equity Index Account 

Fidelity Spartan U.S. Equity Index


Large Growth

Mainstay Large Cap Growth Fund

Fidelity Contrafund 


Aggressive Value

American Beacon Small Cap Value Fund 

American Beacon Small Cap Value Fund


Aggressive Growth

Vanguard Explorer Adm

Fidelity Low-Priced Stock Fund

Wells Fargo Small Company Growth Fund



CREF Stock Account 

Fidelity Worldwide


International Equity

TIAA-CREF International Equity 

Fidelity Diversified International


Fixed Account

TIAA Traditional Annuity

MetLife Guaranteed 


Money Market

CREF Money Market 
Vanguard Federal Money Market Fund

Fidelity Retirement Money Market


Core Bond

CREF Bond Market Account 

Prudential Total Return


Asset Allocation

Lifecycle Funds:

Fidelity Freedom Funds:
Fidelity Freedom 2000
Fidelity Freedom 2010
Fidelity Freedom 2020
Fidelity Freedom 2030
Fidelity Freedom 2040
Fidelity Freedom 2050
Fidelity Freedom Income Fund


Real Estate

TIAA Real Estate Account

Fidelity Real Estate Investment Portfolio


Treasury Inflation Protected Securities

CREF Inflation-Linked Bond Account

Fidelity Inflation Protected Bond Fund


Emerging Markets

Lazard Emerging Markets Institutional Fund

Lazard Emerging Markets Institutional Fund

For fund codes and related information, see:

What if I want to invest in funds that are not approved for the ORP?

You can contribute to more of the vendor funds through the university's Tax-Deferred Annuity (TDA) program.  

Why can't I invest in all vendor funds through ORP?

VCU bears the fiduciary responsibility for the ORP; it is a retirement benefit provided through the university with funding from state dollars. The TDA is a benefit that is funded with the individual's dollars; the participant bears the risk of the investments.

ORP enrollment (time sensitive)

New faculty? Enroll online in the ORP! Complete an Election to Participate in the Optional Retirement Plan (VRS-65) form with VCU Human Resources; and enroll online with the appropriate vendor within 60 days of your employment date. Below are links to the vendor enrollment sites:

  • TIAA
    When the TIAA site prompts you for an access code, use VCUFAC.

  • Fidelity
    When the Fidelity site prompts you for a plan ID, use 73048.
How do I change ORP allocations with my vendor?

You can change funds (allocations) within your vendor at any time.

If your ORP vendor is TIAA:
Click here and log in, or
Call 1-800-842-2776

If your ORP vendor is Fidelity:
Click here and log in, or
Call 1-800-343-0860

Where can I get retirement counseling or education?

Periodically, VCU Human Resources invites the vendors on campus to review their investment products and provide individual retirement counseling sessions. Additional resources include:

Education, Tools, and Resources:

  • Click here for additional TIAA materials.
  • Click here for additional Fidelity materials. 
VCU Investment Committee meeting minutes