Research Foundation CUNY - Hiring Process and Procedures

Step One: Employment Eligibility Verification

Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, is used for verifying the identity and employment authorization of individuals hired for employment in the United States. Every new employee you hire (including temporary or part-time employees currently working under CUNY) is required to complete the online electronic Form I-9. Independent Contractors are not required to complete this form.


Form I-9 Section One

Once you have selected your candidate, e-mail Ms. SueAne Solares-Loza and Ms. Yasmin Jewnandan with the name(s) and e-mail address(es) of the new employee(s). The Office of Grant/Sponsored Programs will send an e-mail invitation to the prospective employee to complete  Section One of the electronic Form I-9 on or before the first day of hire.


Form I-9 Section Two

After the employee completes  Section One of the I-9, they must call the Office of Grants/Sponsored Program at (718) 631–6357 to schedule an appointment with Ms. Solares-Loza or Ms. Jewnandan to complete  Section Two. To comply with the federal government's laws and regulations, Section Two of Form I-9 and E-verification must be completed within three business days of hire by the employee. For example, if an employee's start date is on Thursday, we will have until the following Tuesday to complete Section Two of the Form I-9.

E-Verify is an Internet-based system that compares information from an employee's Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, to data from U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Social Security Administration records to confirm employment eligibility.

RFCUNY Rehires Break in Service

The RFCUNY classifies an employee who has experienced a break-in service lasting 120 days or more as a rehire. The process for determining rehire protocols depends on both the final timesheet date from the previous appointment and the start date of the new appointment.

Kindly email Abeer Hamdan and the Grants Office, and provide the employee's full name, RFCUNY six-digit empl ID, and the start date. We will determine whether or not the employee will need an updated Form I-9, Reverification, or a new Form I-9 and E-Verify. 

Employees with more than 30 days but less than 120 days break in service must provide an Employee Title Wage Designator and Job Duties & Qualifications form if there was a change of status, pay rate and/or job title. Email forms to Abeer Hamdan and SueAne Solares-Loza.


[1]  Department of Homeland Security. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.  E-Verify Overview;  Last modified March 25, 2016. (


Step Two: RFCUNY Onboard Hire Application

Role of Principal Investigator (PI) / Project Director (PD) in the Onboard Hire Application Process

Once the employee completes step one, the PI/PD will initiate and complete the online RF Onboard Hire application by logging in to the RFCUNY Web Site using the three-character User ID and Password. The following steps and information will assist the PI/PD in completing the application:


RF Onboard System

If this is your first time using the RF Onboard system, we recommend watching the training video. This video serves as your gateway to understanding the details of the RF Onboard system, ensuring that you navigate it confidently and precisely.

RF Onboard Training Video (43 minutes)


RF Job Titles, Job Codes & Suggested Salary Guidelines

Choose the appropriate RF job title that aligns with the employee's functions. Just click on the link below to find a helpful resource that provides the correct RF job title code.

RF Job Titles, Job Codes & Suggested Salary Guidelines


Salary Expense Code

Select the appropriate salary expense code (Object Code) that matches the personnel budget of the PI's web report for the employee's title.

Salary Expense Code


Hiring a CUNY Employee and What the PI/PD Needs to Know

  • Before a CUNY employee begins working on a grant-related project, collaborate with the Grants Office for guidance. The PI/PD is responsible for reviewing the "Guidance on Payments for CUNY Full-Time Faculty, Adjunct Faculty, and Full-Time Non-Faculty CUNY Employees Memorandum."

  • If the CUNY employee is eligible to work on a grant-related project, PI/PD complete and sign the Dual Employment Letter, and provide it to the CUNY employee for obtaining the Department Chair or Supervisor's signature.

  • Once the employee returns the signed letter to the PI/PD, please email it to SueAne Solares-Loza to facilitate approval from the QCC Human Resources. Please remember that the QCC Office of Faculty and Staff Relations requires at least one to two weeks' notice to review and approve the Dual Employment letter.

  • The Grants Office will inform the PI/PD if they can proceed with hirng the CUNY Employee. If so, the PI/PD will upload the approved Dual Employment letter to the onboard system.


Annual Leave Policy and Scheduling Agreement Form

Review the Annual Leave forms with your employees. (coming soon) 

Role of the Grants Office in the Onboard Hire Application Process

The Grants Office will review the RF Onboard Hire application. Once approved, the onboard application will be routed to the new employee.

Role of the RF New Employee in the Oboard Application Process

After the GO approves the onboard application, the new employee will receive an email invitation from with the subject, "Complete RFCUNY Hire Packet." It provides the employee with information about their position, including a link to the onboard system, the employee's temporary login ID will be their email account and a temporary password. Employees will be asked to change their password when they are in the system.

Once the employee submits the completed onboard application to the RF, they will receive an email with the subject, "Your RFCUNY Hire Packet Has Been Approved by Research Foundation Human Resources department." A six-digit RFCUNY User ID (EMP ID) is provided. This information will grant them access to various electronic tools, including My Payroll & Benefits and the Time & Leave system. Furthermore, they must fulfill the Mandatory Workplace Harassment Prevention Training.

Step Three: What Happens After RFCUNY Approves the Onboard Hire Application?


Electronic-Personal Action Form (e-PAF)

The RFCUNY Human Resources Coordinator is responsible for generating the electronic Personnel Action Form (e-PAF) for new hires and rehires with a break in service lasting 120 days or more on behalf of the Principal Investigator.


Activate CUNYFirst Account

After the RF Human Resources Coordinator approves the onboard, on the next business day, the Principal Investigator or Project Administrator informs the employee to claim their CUNYFirst account by sending the link or providing the following instructions:

  1. Navigate to the QCC Homepage , select "Login" from the menu bar
  2. Select "CUNYFirst."
  3. The CUNY Login window will appear. Click on "New User" and follow the prompts.

Upon activation, the CUNYFirst system will provide RFCUNY employees with their User Name and an 8-digit CUNY ID number (not the same as the RFCUNY six-digit Empl ID). They do not have to be on campus to register of a CUNYFirst account.

Keep in mind that if the RF Onboard Hire applicaton is not approved by the RFCUNY HR, the employee will not be able to activate their CUNYFirst account.


If an employee requires access to the QCC account (used for computer sign-in), please send an email to



Office 365 - Outlook

Once the RFCUNY employee activates their CUNYFirst account, they can access Office 365 by following the instructions:

  1. Go to and click the "Sign in" option.
  2. Type in your CUNYFirst username (e.g., and click "Next."
  3. Use the same password as your CUNYFirst account and select "Next."
  4. A prompt appears requesting additional information. Click "Next."
  5. Select "United States."
  6. Provide your phone number.
  7. Decide your Preferred verification method: "Microsoft Authenticator app." Then, click "Next."
  8. Enter the code you've received and press "Verify."
  9. You'll receive a message stating, "We've sent a text message to your phone at +1." Click "Done."

College ID Card

Once the RFCUNY employee has successfully activated their CUNYFirst account, as per college policy, faculty, staff, students, and RFCUNY employees must carry their QCC College identification card. To obtain the College ID card, individuals can visit the College ID office located in room LB-02 of the Library Building's basement.

Who to Contact

Keep in mind that RFCUNY and QCC are two separate entities. Any questions and/or issues with timesheets, payroll, etc. PIs should contact the Office of Grants/Sponsored Programs at (718) 631-6357. PIs may also contact the following Research Foundation CUNY Human Resources and Payroll Coordinators.

RFCUNY Human Resources

Ms. Abeer Hamdan
RFCUNY HR Coordinator
Phone: 212-417-8654 | Fax: 6354

Ms. Sacheen McWatt
RFCUNY Personnel Manager
Phone: 212-417-8650 | Fax: 8659

RFCUNY Payroll

Mr. Clark Lantz
RFCUNY Payroll Coordinator
Phone: 212-417-8644 | Fax: 6344

Ms. Patrice Osbahr
Assistant Director, Payroll Administration
Phone: 212-417-8670 | Fax: 8680

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