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Seton Hall University

Volunteer Policy

I.  PURPOSE

The purpose of this policy is to establish consistent procedures for the authorized use of volunteers by Seton Hall University in support of its educational mission.  This policy is designed to protect the interests of the University, its volunteers and the community it serves.

II.  SCOPE

This is a University-wide policy.  

III.  DEFINITIONS 

Volunteer is any individual providing, without compensation or the expectation of compensation, any service at or for the University, whether on-campus or off-campus.  An unpaid intern accepted by the University is considered a volunteer and may have additional rights and responsibilities pursuant to an internship agreement.  An uncompensated visiting faculty member is also considered a volunteer and may have additional rights and responsibilities under the Faculty Guide.  An employee may serve as a volunteer as long as the employee is exempt under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and is not compensated, or have any expectation of compensation, for the services provided as a volunteer, subject to the terms and conditions of this policy.  University students performing services in satisfaction of curricular requirements are not considered volunteers for purposes of this policy nor are students who are members of recognized University student clubs or organizations.  Students participating in activities through the Division of Volunteer Efforts are not considered volunteers for purposes of this policy as long as there is a University approved agreement with the organization hosting the activity.  Members of the Board of Trustees, Board of Regents and all Board committees are governed by the University By-Laws and other University policies and are not considered volunteers for purposes of this policy.

IV.  POLICY

A.  General Terms

1.  Volunteers shall be 18 years of age or older, except for University students who seek to serve as Volunteers.  University students between the ages of 16 and 18 who seek to volunteer are required to provide written parental/guardian consent and must be authorized in accordance with Section D in order to volunteer.

2.  All Volunteers are required to abide by all University policies and procedures, https://www.shu.edu/policies, including but not limited to, University policies regarding sexual harassment, discrimination, assault, misconduct, retaliation and the duty to report suspected child abuse. These policies can be found at https://www.shu.edu/policies/policy-against-sexual-misconduct-sexual-harassment-and-retaliation.cfm, https://www.shu.edu/policies/discrimination-harassment-retaliation.cfm and  https://www.shu.edu/compliance/dyfs-letter.cfm.

3.  Volunteers serve at the sole discretion of the University.  The University may decide not to use the service of a Volunteer for any reason, at any time, without prior notice or cause.

4.  Being authorized to serve as a Volunteer provides no guarantee or expectation of future employment by the University.

5.  The University shall not create email accounts for, or issue temporary identification cards to, Volunteers, except for volunteer coaches as defined by, and in accordance with, NCAA rules and regulations.

6.  Non-students may only be considered for volunteer service if they are authorized to work in this country.  

7.  Students holding a visa may only be considered for volunteer service in accordance with the terms and conditions of their visa.

8.  A Volunteer may serve no more than 35 hours per week, except for volunteer coaches as defined by, and in accordance with, NCAA rules and regulations.

9.  A Volunteer may serve no longer than one (1) year without reauthorization under this Policy. 

10.  A returning Volunteer with a break in service as a Volunteer of more than one year must complete all applicable processes and authorizations under this policy.  A Volunteer subject to the Minors on Campus Policy must satisfy all requirements of that policy, which takes precedence over this Volunteer Policy.

11.  If the individual is a current Volunteer but their services as a Volunteer have changed, all applicable processes must be completed.

B.  Volunteer Activities

1.  Volunteer activities may involve services at the University, or for, or in support of, University events, projects or endeavors, both on campus and off campus.  

2.  Volunteer activities must constitute a bona fide effort by the individual Volunteer to provide services that benefit the educational mission of the University.  

3.  Volunteers may only perform the services authorized by the University and must be supervised or monitored by a University employee.

4.  Volunteers shall not disclose or discuss any confidential information obtained from the University either while serving as a Volunteer or after their volunteer service has ended and shall, if requested, sign a confidentiality agreement.

5.  Anything that a Volunteer creates for the University shall belong to the University and the Volunteer is required to transfer and assign all rights and interests in and to such creations to the University.

C.  Prohibited Volunteer Services

1.  Volunteer activities may not displace the work performed by University employees and Volunteers may not displace or replace regular University employees in the performance of their regular duties.  

2. Volunteers (in their role as Volunteers) may not hold a University leadership position, be responsible for directing employees or enter into any contract on behalf of the University.

3.  Volunteers may not perform any service that places the Volunteer, the University or the community in substantial risk, including:

a.  any activity considered inappropriate for an employee;
b.  operating heavy equipment; and
c.  working with hazardous materials or infectious or potentially infectious agents, including human blood.

D.  Authorization of Volunteer

1.  The Department seeking the services of a Volunteer shall be responsible for:

a. determining the purpose for which a volunteer is requested;
b. identifying the skills required for the service to be provided; 
c.  ensuring that all volunteers possess the requisite skills; and
d.  identifying the employee who will supervise the volunteer; and
e.  completing the Volunteer Services Agreement, if applicable.

2.  Except as set forth in Section E below, all Volunteers shall enter into a Volunteer Agreement, https://www.shu.edu/policies/upload/Volunteer-Agreement.pdf, which requires the written approval of the division Vice President. 

3.  The approved Volunteer Agreement is to be submitted by the division Vice President to Human Resources for review, final authorization and scheduling of training, at least 30 days prior to the anticipated arrival of the Volunteer.    

4.  To ensure consistency in application of this policy, questions regarding the need for a Volunteer Agreement should be directed to Human Resources before allowing the individual to begin volunteering.

5.  Departments utilizing Volunteers whose services do not require a Volunteer Agreement shall maintain records relating to any Volunteer as directed by their division Vice President. 

E.  Services Not Requiring a Volunteer Agreement

In general, a Volunteer Agreement shall not be required for the following types of services:

a.  advisory boards not subject to the University By-Laws;
b.  invited speakers or guest lecturers who lend their expertise on a one-time or      limited basis; 
c.  one-time special events or activities, such as alumni activities; or
d.  greeting or directing individuals at a University event.

F.  Services Requiring a Volunteer Agreement  

1.  In general, a Volunteer Agreement shall be required for the following types of services:

a. activities with minors;
b. volunteer activities with students, unless the Volunteer is also a student, the recipient of the volunteer services is not a minor and the services are provided on campus;
c. on-going volunteer services, such as mentoring;
d. volunteering over an extended period of time, defined as more than five (5) consecutive days, irrespective of the number of hours volunteered per day;
e. laboratory activities;
f. professional services;
g. travel of any kind;
h. recreational or competitive sports; or
i. activities associated with confidential information, including personnel records,  social security numbers, credit card and bank account numbers and protected health information.

2.  No Volunteer under the age of 18 may perform services requiring a Volunteer Agreement.

3.  All Volunteers who are required to enter into a Volunteer Agreement are required to complete mandatory compliance training, University training on Title IX, sexual misconduct, sexual harassment, discrimination, retaliation and the duty to report suspected child abuse, all as scheduled and directed by the University.  Depending on the nature of the services, some Volunteers may also be required to complete data security training as well.  All Volunteers shall complete all required certifications related to such training in accordance with the applicable policies.  Failure to do so may result in revocation of authorization as a volunteer.

4.  Those Volunteers who are required to enter into a Volunteer Agreement are required to participate in the University’s on-boarding procedures as directed by Human Resources.

5.  All Volunteers required to enter into a Volunteer Agreement under this policy are required to complete a background check consistent with the terms of the University’s Background Check Policy, https://www.shu.edu/policies/background-check.cfm.  Authorization to serve as a Volunteer is contingent upon satisfactory results of a background check, as determined at the sole discretion of the University.  The cost of the background check shall be paid by the requesting department.  

6.  All Volunteers required to enter into a Volunteer Agreement who are also subject to the Minors on Campus Policy must comply with the background check requirements of the Minors on Campus Policy.

G.  Compensation and Benefits

1.  Volunteers are not considered employees for any purpose, including volunteer employees while serving as Volunteers.  

2.  Volunteers are not eligible for compensation or any retirement, health, workers’ compensation or other benefits as a result of their volunteer status.  

3.  Volunteers may, subject to the terms and conditions of the University’s insurance policies, have limited insurance coverage for injuries resulting from accidents occurring within the scope of their assigned volunteer duties.

H.  Employee Volunteers

1.  Employees may volunteer their personal time, without compensation or the expectation of compensation for the services they provide as a volunteer, only if:

a.  the employee is exempt under the federal Fair Labors Standard Act;
b. the employee participation is truly voluntary;
c. the employee Volunteer will not be treated more favorably than employees who do not volunteer;
d. no University employment decision will be impacted by an employee’s decision to volunteer or not volunteer;
e. the volunteer activities do not occur during normal working hours without prior written approval by the employee’s supervisor and the Associate Vice President for Human Resources; and 
f. the volunteer activities are unrelated to the employee's regular duties.  

2.  Any employee wishing to serve as a Volunteer is subject to the terms and conditions of this policy. 

V.  RESPONSIBLE OFFICES

VI.  RELATED POLICIES

Background Check Policy
Policy on Mandatory Compliance Training
Policy Against Sexual Misconduct, Sexual Harassment and Retaliation
Policy Against Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation
Duty to Report Child Abuse

VII.  APPROVED

This Policy was approved by President Joseph Nyre, on the recommendation of the Executive Cabinet, on April 20, 2020.

VIII.  EFFECTIVE DATE

April 20, 2020                     

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