Benefits Education — Classes and Programs
The BMC Benefits Department sponsors classes and events throughout the year for employees. These are free to all BMC employees. Please view the Events Calendar as well as Corporate Communications for updates regarding classes and seminars. NOTE from Judie: is this calendar really kept up to date by HR – copyright is 2003?
The Importance of Long Term Care
Long-term care is the type of care you will need if a chronic illness, injury, or frailty makes it difficult for you to function independently. It comprises a variety of out-of hospital health and social services provided to people having difficulty taking care of themselves. While over 70% of these services are provided at home, we often associate long-term care with assisted living facilities and nursing homes. Learn more about LTC and how to determine if it is suitable for you.
This workshop helps employees recognize the importance of managing debt. It also offers interactive discussions of real-life scenarios involving spending and saving behaviors, as well as, providing steps to help participants reach their future financial goals.
Saving for College
This class provides an overview of college savings products and guidance on appropriate selections. Possibilities include IRAs, UGMA/UTMA accounts, 529 Plans, Educational Savings Accounts.
Financial Aid for College
MEFA sponsors this class about applying, receiving, and utilizing financial aid for college.
Estate planning can be as simple as a will that directs the distribution of assets upon death, or as complex as a trust that preserves wealth over several generations while minimizing taxes. This class covers fundamental estate planning topics, including the purpose of an estate plan; how to calculate the federal estate tax; and, more common estate planning tools and how they can be used.
Individual Counseling Sessions
BMC offers Individual Counseling Sessions, where you can meet one-on-one with a TIAA-CREF Consultant to discuss your personal financial situation. TIAA-CREF Consultants offer free, confidential information and advice, and can help you decide how the Plan's mutual funds and annuities can fit into your overall financial picture. Call 781.314.2400 or click to schedule an appointment (if you are using the on-line option you will have to log into your TIAA-CREF account first). See what will be covered in an individual counseling session (Adobe Flash)
For General TIAA-CREF Assistance Call: 1.800.410.6649
Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Counting Down to Retirement
This three session course is designed for employees within 5 years of retirement. It provides the most up to date information on Social Security Benefits, Medicare and options on how to fill the "Medicare Gap".
This class is for employees not yet participating in a 403(b) plan or participants who have just enrolled and want to learn more. It covers the basic features of the plans, the benefits of tax-deferred savings, how to select investments options, and the enrollment process.
For employees who have enrolled in a 403(b) plan and want to learn more, this class covers the basic characteristics of asset classes such as stock, bonds and cash. The importance of a diversified investment mix will be discussed as well as how to calculate the amount needed to save in order to reach retirement goals. Participants will learn how to analyze their current portfolio allocation and develop a strategy to improve it.
As employees get closer to retirement, it is important to take a fresh look at their investment strategy. At this stage the goal often changes from just accumulation to a balance of accumulation and asset preservation. Participants will learn how and when to make this shift.
When employees retire they have many decisions to make regarding their savings in the 403(b) plans. This class covers the many distribution options available to create an income stream during retirement. The tax consequences of each option will be discussed as well as planning steps the participant should take before their actual retirement date.
Home Buying 101
This course is a must for any first-time home buyer. Topics include: introducing 1st time buyers to the mortgage process, qualifying for a mortgage, qualifying for a mortgage, finding, owning, and running a home, and assisting with public programs. Family members are invited to attend as well.
Home Buying 201
This course teaches homeowners the basics of owning property. Topics include: property management and maintenance; safety issues, personal financing management such as: budgeting and tax planning/record keeping; Financing home improvements; homeowners insurance; and, including landlord/tenant relationship. including tenant selection, setting rents, the eviction process and housing codes. Class attendance means participants are eligible for up to a 10 percent discount on homeowners' insurance, products from an area hardware store, a security system and free membership to the Boston Consumer Alliance.
Credit Smart and Money Wise
This series of classes addresses credit, what it is and why it is important. Participants will learn how to establish and maintain good credit and to avoid credit traps. Credit problems are discussed, as are ways to restore credit and wise money-management strategies.
Dash for Health
DASH is an eating style rich in fruits, vegetables, and low fat dairy products, complemented by lean meat, fish and poultry. Good fats replace saturated fat and whole grain products take the place of processed foods. Originally intended as a meal plan for reducing high blood pressure, the whole foods suggested in the DASH plan also make it perfect for weight loss and reducing risk factors for heart disease and cancer. This online program has been developed for employees and their families to help improve their eating and exercise habits. Each day, participants will receive information on the website about food, food preparation, eating out, losing weight, getting fit and much more. In addition to providing new information each week on the website, participants have their own web page where they can track progress in areas such as your weight, blood pressure, and exercise. People are more successful when they track their actions. Sign up for DASH newsletter.
Successful quitting requires addressing the physical dependence on nicotine, as well as making major behavior changes. In conjunction with HPHC, through the Division of Psychiatry, BMC sponsors an eight- week program, that includes pharmacotherapy; nicotine replacement (gum and patches); stress reduction training; cognitive restructuring; social support; and relapse prevention counseling. Harvard Pilgrim (including BMC Preferred) co-payments will be waived for BMC employees who complete the eight-week program. Get more information or sign up for the program.
Nutrition and Weight Loss
Tired of yo-yo dieting? In today's media, we are bombarded several times a day with new fad diets, unrealistic weight loss approaches, infomercials for exercise gadgets, fat burners, and diet pills. Forget all that - find yourself on an adventure of lifestyle change with a sensible approach for life-long weight management that works!
Stress can affect all areas of life. This class addresses how to recognize sources of stress, as well as signs and symptoms of umanaged stress. Participants will learn tools to better manage stress.