Adopted by President’s Cabinet October 30, 2012
Revisions Adopted by President’s Cabinet 9/26/16

Policy Statement

East Georgia State College welcomes volunteer support to accomplish its missions of education and public service. The service, advice and insight that volunteers provide are an invaluable resource. The College will make every effort to provide volunteers with a meaningful, worthwhile experience.

Reason for Policy and Scope of Policy

This policy is designed to reduce volunteer risk and protect the interests of the College, its volunteers and the community it services. It addresses various issues regarding the engagement of volunteers for services to the College, defines the volunteer relationship, its privileges and responsibilities, and clarifies the College’s liability for using the services of volunteers. Any unit, office or department that engages volunteers on behalf of the College is covered by this policy.

Definitions

The following definitions apply to the terms as used in this policy:

“Agent of the Institution” is an individual acting on behalf of the College.

“Volunteers” are uncompensated individuals who perform services directly related to the business of the College for their benefit, to support humanitarian, charitable or public service activities of the College volunteer, or to gain experience in specific endeavors. To qualify as a College volunteer, an individual must be willing to provide service according to the procedures set forth in this policy.

Procedures for Screening and Engaging Volunteers

Responsibility of Volunteers

Voluntary service, while uncompensated, establishes the volunteer as an agent of the institution while performing assigned duties. Therefore, volunteers are expected to abide by College policies, procedures and external regulations (Board of Regents policies) that govern their actions, including, but not limited to, those of ethical behavior, confidentiality, safety, sexual harassment, conduct and alcohol and drug use.

Eligibility of Volunteers

Anyone eighteen (18) years of age or older, including retirees, students, alumni, or other community members may provide volunteer service to the College. Current employees may serve as volunteers with special permission of the President after consideration of the employees current work schedule, approval of the employee’s supervisor and conclusion that no conflicts in work or volunteer schedules exist. Employees cannot volunteer to do the same (similar or identical) work for which they are employed. Employees who serve as a volunteer must complete the Volunteer Agreement form for Employees.

Procedures

The unit, office, or department is responsible for ensuring that the volunteer selected and engaged has the adequate experience, qualifications, and training for the task he or she will be required to perform. The unit, office or department that identifies a need or receives a request for volunteer services should take appropriate measures to ensure that all College volunteer procedures are followed.

    1. The department manager must notify the College’s Director of Human Resources of the request of volunteer services by completing the Request for Volunteer Services or Request form.
    2. A description of the volunteer duties and services must be completed and submitted with the Request for Volunteer Services form.
    3. The Director of Human Resources will review the request and notify the department manager of the initial authorization or denial for the request.
    4. Upon authorization, the Office of Human Resources will meet with the individual to complete the necessary paperwork:
      EGSC Volunteer Agreement: signed by the volunteer and office or department where volunteer will be working; Personal Data; Emergency Contacts; and Authorization to perform a criminal background check and/or credit check. The office or department engaging the volunteer will bear the cost of the background checks.

Upon receipt of clear background results, the Office of Human Resources will notify the department manager of the final authorization to allow the volunteer to begin volunteer activities. If background results reflect Criminal History or Credit history concerns, the Background Investigation Committee Employment will review the results to determine if volunteer duties can be granted or continued using the Board of Regents eligibility criteria for employees, and notice requirements. The Director of Human Resources will serve as contact between the committees and the prospective volunteer.

Current employees who serve as a volunteer must receive prior written approval from their supervisor to perform any volunteer work during the employee’s normal working hours and submit annual leave for time missed.

Volunteer Services Exempt from Volunteer Agreement

Generally, a College volunteer is required to complete a Volunteer Agreement form before he or she may engage in volunteer activities for the institution. However, for certain one-time low risk activities, an Agreement is not required. Activities which do not require a Volunteer Agreement:

    • Commencement
    • Foundation meetings, events or activities;
    • Public speakers or performers at the College; and
    • Phone a Thon Volunteers and other fund-raising activities.

To determine if a specific low risk volunteer activity is exempt, please contact the Director of Human Resources.

Volunteer Start Date

A background investigation is required prior to any volunteer beginning his or her service at the College.

Prohibited Activities

Volunteer services are generally limited to humanitarian, charitable or public services. Accordingly, College volunteers are prohibited from performing any of the following activities:

    • Operating heavy equipment, including government owned vehicles;
    • Operating any power driven circular saws, band saws;
    • Entering in to any contract on behalf of the College; and
    • Any activity considered inappropriate for a College employee.

Liability for Volunteers

Volunteer duties may involve certain risks. The College is self insured through the Georgia Department of Administrative Services Risk Management against state tort claims. This coverage is extended to College volunteers who are part of a structured program organized, controlled and directed by a College Department for the purpose of carrying out the functions of the institution. The liability coverage is for injuries and/or property damage volunteers may cause others while acting in the course of their official volunteer duties. Liability coverage does not apply when volunteers deviate from the course of their volunteer duties.

Benefits for Volunteers

College volunteers are not covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act and are not considered employees of the institution for any purpose. Therefore, volunteers are not entitled to employee benefits, and the College does not provide volunteers with accident or medical insurance. Further, volunteers are not covered by worker’s compensation laws in connection with their volunteer affiliation. If the volunteer duties require utilization of a volunteer’s personal vehicle, the College does not provide comprehensive or collision insurance for the volunteer’s vehicle.

Payments to Volunteers

Payment, promise of payment, promise of future employment, or special consideration for voluntary services are not allowed. However, the unit, office or department may reimburse pre-approved actual and reasonable expenses arising from the performance of assigned tasks following the standard College reimbursement procedures. Such pre-approval shall be documented in writing between the volunteer and the unit, office or department head prior to the occurrence of the activity for which expense reimbursement is desired.

Required Training for Volunteers

Pursuant to the University System of Georgia policy, volunteers shall participate in ethics training and environmental affairs/right to know training.

Ending the Volunteer Arrangement

A College volunteer’s service may be terminated at any time, at the sole and exclusive discretion of the College, and without prior notice. Likewise, a volunteer may give notice of intent to leave at any time.

Record Retention

The Human Resources Department will retain all completed Volunteer Agreement Forms for a period of not less than three (3) years from the date of the volunteer’s last day of service.

Returning Volunteers

If the individual is a returning volunteer, but the break in service is greater than six (6) months, all applicable processes described above must be completed again.

Change in Duties

If an individual is a current volunteer, but his or her duties have changed, all applicable forms and processes described above must be completed again.

Contact Person

Tracy Woods, Director of Human Resources, 478-289-2035, twoodsFREEOMNIUPDATE