Staff Policies and Procedures

Last updated on September 22, 2020 2:47 PM

All MIT Department of Physics employees should be familiar with those personnel procedures and policies that impact them. In addition to reviewing MIT's general personnel policiesexternal link icon, employees should review the following Departmental information, policies, and procedures.


The chart below explains the reporting structure of the Department's administrators and staff.

Group Members Responsible Supervisor
Academic Programs Emma Dunn Catherine Modica
  Kimeee Heatley  
  Sydney Miller  
  Denise Wahkor  
  Karma Yangzom  
Fiscal Office Hicran Arnold Rosaleah Brown
  Dakota Wyne  
Headquarters Christina Andujar Matthew Cubstead
  Danielle Forde  
  Ryan Higgins  
  Tan-Quy Tran  
Research Admin. Asst. Lesley Keaney Vicky Metternich
  Monica Wolf  
Administrators Carol Breen Matthew Cubstead
  Erin McGrath  
  Vicky Metternich  
  Catherine Modica  
  Andrew Neely  
Junior Laboratory Bil Sanford Sean Robinson
Technical Services Group Caleb Bonyun Andrew Neely
  Bil Sanford  
  Gladys Velez Caicedo  
  Joshua Wolfe  
Digital Learning Aidan MacDonagh Michelle Tomasik
Individual Reporting & Notification: All Postdoctoral Associates.



Timecards: Support staff and students who are paid weekly are expected to submit their time in the SAP Web Systemexternal link icon and print a copy for your supervisor’s approval by Friday at noon.  The signed must be received by the end of the following business day by the Human Resources Administrator. (Interdepartmental mail should be fine.)  If you work during the weekend, please update your SAP Webexternal link icon record and notify the Human Resources Administrator so that s/he can approve the additional time.  

Extra Hours or Overtime: All support staff are required to obtain approval IN ADVANCE in writing from the Physics Administrative Officer for:

  • any hours over 40 per week;
  • hours worked over your regular weekly schedule exceeding five hours per week;
  • and all changes in the number of work hours.

The Human Resources Administrator will keep track of all comp time. Staff members are responsible to ensure that the hours listed on their time cards accurately reflect their time at work. 


Attendance generally: Dependable attendance and punctuality are expected of all employees.

Support Staff (non-exempt): Non-exempt staff members are expected to be on-site according to the scheduling guidelines of their supervisors. Support staff is asked to carefully record their time and to adhere to their weekly hours allotment. If a support staff member notices that he or she is routinely exceeding their allotment, he or she should speak to his or her manager.

Administrative/Technical Staff (exempt): Exempt staff members are expected to be onsite during normal business hours unless their supervisor has approved an alternative schedule and informed the Human Resources Administrator. Late arrivals or absences should be communicated to the Human Resources Administrator who is responsible for maintaining the administrative calendar. Planned absences should be discussed well in advance with the supervisor, to allow adequate time to plan for work coverage.

Reporting Time Away (vacation, personal and sick): MIT requires departments, labs, and centers to keep administrative calendars that record sick, vacation, or leave times daily for persons on their payroll. This means that employees must inform the Human Resources Administrator when they can not be at work at MIT. The Human Resources Administrator keeps a confidential sick, vacation, leave time calendar for the Department, which is the calendar of record. Supervisors must keep their own calendars as backup for their signatures on individual vacation monthly reports and time cards. Upon being informed of the expected absence, the Human Resources Administrator will notify the supervisor and others in the group by email.

In the case of illness: An employee must notify the Human Resources Administrator before 9:00 a.m. on or before the first day of absence due to illness. After the first day, employees are expected to keep their supervisors informed daily of their condition and their anticipated date of return to work. Medical evidence is required and submitted to the Human Resources Administrator when:

  1. the period of absence is greater than five days; or
  2. the need is required by the pattern of sick leave usage.

In the case of vacation: Vacation is credited on an employee's anniversary date (date of hire), based on service for the preceding year, and must be taken by the employee's next anniversary date. [MIT Personnel Policy Manual 4.2] For more information on how the number of vacation days is calculated, please read the MIT Vacation Policyexternal link icon.

Supervisors have responsibility for coordinating and approving vacation schedules of their employees, following employees' preferences whenever work requirements in the department permit. The amount of vacation to be taken in any one period of time should be discussed well in advance with the supervisor, to allow adequate time to plan for work coverage. [Policy Manual 4.2.4]

Is it personal time? MIT's policy on personal leave is intended to provide Support Staff with flexibility in their work situations by allowing paid time away from work to accommodate personal needs which otherwise would have to be charged to vacation balances. It is not additional vacation time. Support staffs' medical appointments may be credited against sick, but not personal time. For more information, please read the MIT Sick/Personal Leave Policyexternal link icon.

Vacation Reports: The Human Resources Administrator will send out individual monthly vacation reports for exempt staff members, which include accrued vacation time. The signed reports are due back to the Human Resources Administrator within one week of receipt.


Staff members are encouraged to take advantage of the many training resources available at the Institute. Training resources are online at link icon.

Information on taking non-MIT courses is online at link icon.


Use of MIT Equipment Including Computers and Telephones: Employees are reminded that MIT equipment is meant to be used for work-related purposes. Use of electronic mail systems and telephones for extensive personal use is not allowed. Additionally, employees are reminded that telephone, electronic mail and Internet use logs are kept as a normal business practice. A telephone is located for employees use in the employee lounge located at 4-303 in the event an extended personal call is needed.

Computer Backups & Virus Protection: It is the responsibility of each individual staff member that his/her computer is locked, backed up nightly, and the latest virus protection has been downloaded and installed. Information about fulfilling these responsibilities may be found at the MIT Information Systems website located at link icon.

Passwords: Since computers, files, documents, and records on computers belong to the Department (Institute), access to passwords must be made available for access to vital department business.  Please be sure your supervisor knows your password when you are not going to be at MIT or has a way to reach you in case s/he needs access to the information. Alternatively, you can provide him/her with your passwords in advance.

Personal Information: If you have PRIVATE or PERSONAL information on your computer, please place the information in a folder labeled PERSONAL. Employees are strongly discouraged from storing such material on their assigned machinery as its confidentiality is in no way guaranteed.

Installation or Reactivation of Telephones and Network Drops: The installation or reactivation of telephones/ network drops must be approved in advance by the Administrative Officer.

The Physics Website: In the event you have to send corrections or updates to the Physics website, please send them to the Department's Communications Administrator using these guidelines:

  1. Submit an MS WORD document to the Communication Administrator as an email attachment. Document format should be clear and consistent: 1" margins; any title in body, not as a header; consistent font types and sizes; correct spelling and grammar. This should be the final, proofed version of your document.
  2. Print the specific webpages from that you want corrected/updated, and indicate clearly where new information (which you've already provided electronically via email) should be inserted, including highlighting all links that need to be updated.
  3. Leave hard copies of annotated web pages in the Communication Administrator's inbox in Physics HQ (4-304).
  4. Specify deadline(s) in your email request to the Communication Administrator.

Obtaining Computer Help: There are numerous place one may find support for computer problems.  For more specific types of help, other MIT resources are listed along with the pilot below:

Information Systems Service Deskexternal link icon: Use form to request help and support, from technical troubleshooting to training and education.

Information Systems Stock Answersexternal link icon: For written answers regarding questions about the following applications: Athena, Backup, Business Applications, Database/Spreadsheet, Email, Networking, Operating Systems, Printing, Telephones & Voice Mail, Virus Protection, Web Publishing, Word Processing, Other

Help Desk Service Center: Hardware and Software Serviceexternal link icon: The Service Center offers a full range of hardware and software services to the MIT Community in a timely and cost-effective manner:

  • Diagnosis and repair for Institute and personally owned computers
  • Warranty repairs on Apple, Dell, and Lenovo computers
  • Hardware and software service upgrades
  • Order Apple, Dell, or Lenovo parts for MIT departments on an MIT account number
  • Disaster recovery and assessment
  • Troubleshoot network configuration problems including DHCP, Tether, and iPass
  • Resolve wireless connectivity problems
  • Virus, spyware and adware scanning and removal


Artwork for Offices: Artwork can be borrowed to hang in offices from: MIT Visual Art Centerexternal link icon, E15-109, x3-6633

Used Furnitureexternal link icon: Used furniture can be found at Furniture Exchange, WW15, 3-4293, (Tues. & Thurs. 10 AM to 4 PM)

MIT Athena accountexternal link icon (which includes the Kerberos ID): This requires the applicant to have a valid MIT identification number.

Electronic Forms & Software: