Policies and Procedures
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The Center for Career Education seeks both to partner with employers to maximize recruiting results and assist students in making informed career decisions. To accomplish these goals, we have developed student and employer policies to ensure the process is fair for all employer and student participants. Booking an on or off campus event with the Columbia University Center for Career Education indicates your agreement to abide by these policies and procedures.
- Employment, Interview, Offer and Acceptance Policies
- Cancellations and Rescheduling
- Third-party Agencies
- Commission-Based Sales Positions
- Rescinding or Deferring Employment
- NACE Principles for Professional Practice
- Discrimination and Harassment Policy
- Unpaid Internships and Academic Credit
Second Round Interview Policies
Employers are required to provide students with 72 business hours’ notice of a second round interview date, and must accommodate student requests for alternate second-round interview dates if students present a legitimate scheduling conflict (i.e. class, work assignment or previously scheduled interview).
Offer and Acceptance Policies: On-Campus Interviews
Students will have two weeks from the date a written offer letter is received or until the deadlines below, whichever is later.
- For all offers extended to previous summer interns, students have until November 18, 2016 to make a decision.
- Students interviewed for all positions during 2016 Fall OCI have until November 18, 2016 to make a decision.
- Students interviewed for any position during 2017 Spring OCI have until February 24, 2017 to make a decision.
Offer and Acceptance Policies: Job/Internship Postings in LionSHARE not attached to an OCI Schedule
Students have two weeks from the date a written offer letter is received to make a decision.
Prohibited. Sign-on bonuses should be honored whenever the student accepts the offer.
Cancellations and Rescheduling
Employers will be charged in full for canceling on-campus interview rooms within five business days of their interview date.
Alcohol is prohibited in the Employment Recruiting Process. As a member of the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), Columbia also abides by the Principles for Professional Conduct. The Principles document explains why serving alcohol to job candidates is inappropriate and inadvisable. The principle states, "Serving alcohol should not be part of the recruitment process." Open bars, paid bars, and holding recruiting events in a bar are all inappropriate. Failure to abide by this principle will place the employer in violation of the stated policy. Employers not following the policy can be barred from recruiting at Columbia. Recruiter's names can also be brought to the attention of their superiors and the company can be shared within the NACE community as not following this guideline, endangering students and having been barred from Columbia. For further information, please read the Principles for Professional Conduct in its entirety.
Third party agencies can only post positions with the Center for Career Education for the students and alumni we serve if:
- They are actively recruiting for a bona fide employment opportunity that is appropriate for the skill sets and experience of the students and alumni served by the Center for Career Education on behalf of an employer AND
- The position is posted in LionSHARE under the "Staffing Agencies and Search Firms" employer account.
The Center for Career Education reserves the right to make a determination of the appropriateness of the positions being offered for the populations it serves.
Employers offering positions that provide compensation that is 100% commission based can offer these positions under the following conditions:
- The compensation is clearly disclosed in the position description AND
- The position is posted on LionSHARE and/or relevant alumni job boards.
Employers needing to rescind or defer employment should carefully review the guidelines and follow the NACE recommendations issued in 2002 in their Position Statement on Rescinded and Deferred Employment Offers.
The NACE guidelines urge employers to adopt a two-part approach to employment offers under consideration for revocation. The first emphasizes the need for a commitment to high standards in recruiting. The second offers a reasoned approach to dealing with rescinded and deferred offers.
NACE recommends that employers who must revoke a commitment to do everything possible to avoid rescinding offers, to consider alternatives that do not require rescinding employment offers. These may include changes in job responsibilities, salary reduction and/or reduced workweeks, changes in job locale, delayed starting dates, and other reasonable options.
For candidates whose start dates are deferred:
- Provide services to aid the candidates in securing other employment.
- Provide financial assistance if the deferral will be longer than three months.
- Communicate to candidates as soon as possible.
- Contact the Career Center.
Stay in communication with candidates and the Career Center regarding start dates.
The Center for Career Education expects all employers to treat candidates in an ethical manner. We reserve the right to deny access to on-campus recruiting to any employers who we determine have not conducted their recruiting efforts ethically.
All employment professionals participating in our recruiting program are required to work within a framework of professionally accepted recruiting, interviewing and selection techniques as stipulated in the NACE Principles for Professional Practice.
Columbia University is committed to providing a working and learning environment free from unlawful discrimination and harassment. Consistent with this commitment and with applicable federal, state and local laws, it is the policy of the University as both an educational institution and an employer to prohibit unlawful discrimination and harassment and to provide faculty, students, and staff who believe that they may be the victims of either with mechanisms for seeking redress.
We recommend that all students, alumni, vendors, and employers engaged in activities with the Center for Career Education review Columbia’s Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Policy and Procedure.
If a student or staff member engaged in an activity sponsored by The Center for Career Education (including but not limited to job listings, workshops, panels, counseling sessions, employer presentations, career fairs, interviews, mentoring, internships, off campus recruiting, and employment) believes that the Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Policy and Procedure may have been violated, he or she is urged to contact the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action, a member of the Columbia University Panel on Discrimination and Sexual Harassment, or the Director of Employer and Alumni Relations for The Center for Career Education. If the conduct complained of involves a person or persons within the Columbia community, the actions provided for under the Discrimination and Sexual Harassment Policy and Procedure may apply. If the conduct complained of involves, in addition to a member of the Columbia community, a party or parties outside the Columbia community, the Center for Career Education may conduct an inquiry. In the event The Center for Career Education determines that the complained-of conduct occurred or the outside party chooses not to participate in the inquiry, The Center for Career Education may act to sever the relationship between The Center for Career Education and/or Columbia University and the outside party or organization.
Columbia University expects companies to appropriately compensate students for the work that they perform during an internship. We expect that all employers abide by the standards established by the Fair Labor Standards Act and accompanying regulations.
The U.S. Department of Labor has outlined the following six criteria for unpaid internships to confirm that an internship does not represent an employment relationship. If any of these criteria are not met, the intern must be paid.
- The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the facilities of the employer, is similar to training which would be given in an educational environment;
- The internship experience is for the benefit of the intern;
- The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under close supervision of existing staff;
- The employer that provides the training derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern; and on occasion its operations may actually be impeded;
- The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship; and
- The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time spent in the internship.
- Any clinical training is performed under the supervision and direction of people who are knowledgeable and experienced in the activity;
- The trainees or students do not receive employee benefits;
- The training is general, and qualifies trainees or students to work in any similar business. It is not designed specifically for a job with the employer that offers the program;
- The screening process for the internship program is not the same as for employment, and does not appear to be for that purpose. The screening only uses criteria relevant for admission to an independent educational program;
- Advertisements, postings, or solicitations for the program clearly discuss education or training, rather than employment, although employers may indicate that qualified graduates may be considered for employment.
Additionally, for employers seeking interns to work in the State of New York, strict attention must also be paid to the requirements set forth by the New York State Minimum Wage Act and Wage Orders. The New York State Department of Labor requires the following criteria in additional to the federal requirements above.
All employers are asked to please consider these criteria carefully before posting an unpaid internship.
Academic Credit as a component of Unpaid Internships
Please be aware that the decision to award academic credit is made between students and their academic departments, and most schools/departments at CU do not offer academic credit for internships. Academic credit should not replace compensation for work performed during an internship.