July 31, 2020

Important reminder regarding graduate students and volunteer work

In order for Purdue to remain in compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act, units are reminded that current or former students cannot perform volunteer tasks that would normally be performed by an employee of the University.

Per the Administrative Manual on University Volunteers, prohibited volunteer services include “any work that displaces paid work performed by an employee or contractor of the University or any work that does not meet the definition of volunteer work according to the U.S. Department of Labor.”

In addition, non-U.S. citizens who are in the United States on a visa may be limited in the type of volunteer services they can provide and are prohibited from volunteering in any capacity at the University. International students cannot work or volunteer if their work authorization has expired, and they should never be paid for work/services outside of the payroll system.

Units that are paying these students as contractors instead of as employees are not in compliance.

Questions may be directed to oecomm@purdue.edu.

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