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Payroll and MESP simplify saving for children's college tuition

The U-M Payroll Office has announced a convenient new service for all faculty and staff: They now can make contributions to new or existing Michigan Education Savings Program (MESP) accounts by payroll deduction.

An MESP accountfor an employee's child, grandchild, or even a relative's or friend's childis designed to be a convenient, cost-effective way to save for college. Choosing payroll deduction is designed to be an easy way to participate in MESP.

Employees will never have to write contribution checks or worry if there is enough money in their accounts. All it takes is a quick glance to the "Direct Deposit Distribution" section of the pay stub to see how much they are setting aside each payday.

Visit and enroll online; it takes about 10 minutes. Employees also can download the forms or request an enrollment packet be mailed to them. Whichever way they sign up, they will have the opportunity to select payroll deduction from the payroll office.

The enrollment application must be processed by TIAA-CREF before the payroll office can begin deductions. Employees are asked not to submit payroll deduction forms before receiving confirmation from TIAA-CREF that the MESP account has been established.

Where the payroll deduction form asks for "pay
roll contact name," use U-M Payroll. For "payroll contact phone," use (734) 615-2000. Completed forms should be sent to U-M Payroll at Room G395, Wolverine Tower, campus zip 1279.

An MESP account can be opened with as little as $25, and the minimum contribution is $15 per pay period. There is no annual maximum limit. The MESP offers tax advantagesup to $10,000 annually can be deducted from Michigan taxes, and there is no federal tax on the growth. MESP also has low costs and high flexibility; the funds can be used at schools throughout the country.

There are three investment options for various risk levels, and TIAA-CREF handles account management. Employees may qualify for matching funds from the state. For more information about MESP advantages, visit

Faculty and staff members who already have a MESP account can use the payroll deduction option. They need their MESP option number for the payroll deduction form, which is available at

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