Getting Started

The University of Nebraska–Lincoln welcomes you as an integral member of our community. We view your continuing professional development as essential to our mission of excellence in teaching, research, and service.

We're here to enhance your UNL postdoctoral experience by providing the information, resources, and networking opportunities to improve your current performance and career viability.

Arrival Checklist

Although specific departments/units may have their own requirements, in general here's what you'll need to do:

  • Check-in with PI. Your PI will introduce you to the people you'll be working with and help you become familiar with your work area. Your PI may also know of additional steps required by your department.
  • Check-in with Department Administrator to discuss:
    • Payroll paperwork (PAF)
      • If a U.S. citizen, you'll need your (1) Social Security card and (2) passport or drivers license
      • If an international postdoc, you'll need (1) a Social Security card or a letter from the Social Security Administration (see below for more details) and (2) identifying documents as listed in Form I-9
    • Door access and keys
    • NU ID number for NCard application
    • UNL email address
    • UNL benefits eligibility
  • Go to NCard office to pick up card.
  • Check-in with UNL International Student and Scholar Office if you're an international scholar with a J-1 or H-1B visa. The office is located at Seaton Hall, Suite 201. Be sure to ask about the New International Scholar Orientation.
  • Visit Parking and Transportation to buy your bus pass or parking pass.
  • If you're an international postdoc, obtain a Social Security number (SSN). Visit the Social Security Administration (SSA) to apply for a SSN only after you've been in the US for at least 10 days. The SSA will give you a letter confirming your request for a SSN. You'll need to show your department administrator this letter to receive your pay.
  • Open a checking/savings account. Having an account with the University Credit Union (NUFCU) or one of the many banks in Lincoln allows you easy access to your money and simplifies many common transactions (e.g., direct deposit of your paycheck and withdrawals from citywide ATMs).
  • Enroll in UNL benefits. You have 31 days from your date of hire to visit the Benefits Office (32 Canfield Administration) to enroll. We strongly recommend meeting personally with a benefits representative to ensure you receive all available benefits for you and your family (see also the NU Benefits page). Set up an appointment with the UNL Benefits Office by calling 402-472-2600.
  • Visit us at the Office of Graduate Studies. We'll give you a welcome packet and ask you to provide your contact information so we can send you important announcements.
  • Register your vehicle with the State of Nebraska and obtain a Nebraska driver's license.
  • Attend New Employee Orientation within a month of your arrival.
  • Join the Postdoc mailing list
  • Join the National Postdoctoral Association