Innovative Higher Education

, Volume 38, Issue 5, pp 355-368

First online:

Emeritus Colleges: Enriching Academic Communities by Extending Academic Life

  • Roger G. BaldwinAffiliated withHigher, Adult, and Lifelong Education, College of Education, Michigan State University Email author 
  • , Michael J. ZeigAffiliated withCollege of Education, Michigan State University Email author 

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The emeritus college, a recent higher education innovation, provides retired professors with a means to stay intellectually engaged and continue to contribute professionally in retirement. The emeritus college can also help institutions maintain a steady flow of professional talent by making retirement more attractive for senior academics. This article introduces the emeritus college concept; discusses its implementation at four universities; assesses its benefits for individuals, institutions, and the community; and offers guidelines for institutions wishing to implement their own emeritus college. The emeritus college can provide a bridge from an academic career to a fulfilling retirement while also helping to enrich academic communities.


Emeritus faculty Retirement Faculty development