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Information Technology

IT Guide for Retired Faculty & Staff

Below is an overview of the services UMass Amherst Information Technology offers UMass Amherst retirees.  

The information generally applies to retirees after they leave the university. Emeritus and other retirees who maintain a campus presence may be eligible for additional services. When specified, a valid University use case is any use done at the direction of, or to the direct benefit of, the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Note: These technology benefits are subject to change due to university policy or software licensing changes.

On this page:



Keep your IT Account Active

Retired employees of University of Massachusetts Amherst are eligible for continued access to many UMass Amherst IT services.

Action Needed: Retirees must renew their IT accounts every 2 years through SPIRE to continue receiving IT services.

Learn more



Email and Calendar

Email and calendar services will remain available to active retirees on the platform that their email account was set up with (i.e., Google or Microsoft Exchange, respectively). Access to email and calendar is available via web browser only. The Microsoft Outlook desktop client is not included (see Microsoft 365 section below).

Note: Although Google is a free service, it should be noted that the company plans to incorporate a paid model in the future. At the current time, IT is unsure how this change will affect retirees.

Google Workspace (G Suite)    Microsoft 365 Portal



Microsoft 365 Applications (Previously Microsoft Office)

Retirees with an active NetID automatically retain access to the online versions of Microsoft applications such as Outlook, OneDrive, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

Note: The Microsoft OneDrive storage limit for retirees is 50GB which is not expandable.

Microsoft 365 Portal



Be Secure

UMass Amherst IT accounts are an attractive target for security attacks and phishing. IT provides guidance on how to protect yourself against phishing scams and identity theft.

What is Phishing

Secure Virtual Private Network (VPN)

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) provides an encrypted connection between your off-campus computer and the campus network. Retirees with an active NetID can opt-in to use the campus VPN service at no cost to connect to some campus services remotely.

Note: VPN requires Two-Step Authentication to login (see Two-Step Login details below).

Action Needed: Retirees with an active NetID who wish to use the VPN can request to have it turned on by emailing

Learn more about VPN

Two-Step Login with Microsoft Authenticator

Retirees with an active NetID are eligible to use Microsoft Authenticator for the easiest and most secure two-step login experience.
Get Started with Two-Step Login

Microsoft Defender

Microsoft Defender malware and antivirus protection software is built into the Windows operator system, so it is free for personally owned Windows computers. Other free or paid versions of software are available on the Internet.

Note: A risk assessment is needed if the device will be used to process/store/transmit University data. To request an IT Risk assessment, please email



Wi-Fi on Campus

Wi-Fi is automatically available to retirees with an active NetID while on campus.

Note: You must have a computer with a Wi-Fi-certified, dual-band adapter that is 802.11ac compliant to connect to the UMass Amherst wireless networks.

How to Connect



Library Proxy Access

Some Library resources are blocked from being accessed from non-UMass IP addresses. Library Proxy access allows people to authenticate and access Library resources while using non-UMass IP addresses (from home, for example). Proxy access is automatically available to retirees with an active NetID. Retired faculty can access content the same way they normally do from the UMass Amherst Libraries website. When they perform a database search, they will be prompted for their NetID to access selected content.



Computer CLassrooms

Computer Classrooms are teaching spaces for instructors using computer technology in their coursework. IT operates several computer classrooms on campus and over 100 computers in the Learning Commons. Retirees with an active NetID are welcome to use the Computer Classrooms when classes are not in session.

Azure Virtual Desktop

Azure Virtual Desktop (AVD) is used as a virtual workspace where students, faculty, and staff can access a collection of specialized and industry standard Windows software typically available in computer classrooms remotely from any location.

Note: Retirees do NOT currently have access to AVD, but IT can explore provisioning and opt-in process if there is interest.

More About Computer Classrooms   Azure Virtual Desktop



PDF Editing Software

Foxit PDF Editing software is available to retirees with an Active NetID and a valid University use case. Retirees can request a Foxit license by submitting the Software Request Form. Note: Users must be logged in the Service Portal with their NetID in order to access this form.



Zoom Video Conferencing

Retirees with an active NetID automatically retain their ability to attend and schedule Zoom virtual meetings.



Specialized Software

Retired faculty with an active NetID that are engaged in ongoing scholarly activities can apply for support for acquisition of specialized software through the Retired Faculty Association website.



LinkedIn Learning

LinkedIn Learning is an online library of in-depth courses on subjects from creative tech tools and techniques to business skills.

Action Needed: Retirees with an active NetID who wish to use LinkedIn Learning can request access by emailing




UMass Compass for Retirees (powered by CoreStream) provides exclusive associate discounts on a variety of goods and services, including technology related purchases. Learn more and sign up at



Accessibility Questions

Retirees with disabilities who have questions about accessibility resources and alternatives to standard monitors, mice, and keyboards are welcome to contact the IT Assistive Technology Center



Get Tech Help

IT Service Desk Consultants can answer retiree computing questions related to services provided by UMass in person, online, and over the phone.

Get Tech Help Hardware Repair