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Undergraduate volunteer program


Provide undergraduate students with an additional venue to learn and experience lab/field based research.


Student must be enrolled as an undergraduate in the College of Biological Sciences.

Definition of CBS Volunteer

A volunteer must have specific educational or training goals that can be achieved through observation, instruction and performance in a research setting. The activities of a volunteer must be distinguished from those of an employee – their goal is to be trained and learn, not to perform services for the lab. A volunteer should not be assigned duties that the department would normally pay someone to perform, or in conjunction with a paid employee who is currently performing those services. A volunteer is not a paid employee of the University and is not entitled to receive salary, benefits or other compensation. The volunteer does not qualify for workers compensation benefits and is expected to carry personal medical insurance to cover medical expenses for any injuries incurred while performing volunteer services.

Length of Program

Students should present their educational or training goal to faculty or other lab personnel. Based on the goal, faculty or other lab personnel will help identify how much time is needed. Assignments should be for at least one month in length and no longer than one semester (19 weeks). Students are allowed to participate in the CBS Undergraduate Volunteer program twice during their undergraduate career, but can only participate once in any single lab.

Checklist of Requirements to Start:

Competed forms, proof of insurance and visa status need to be submitted to on or before the start date of assignment.

Participants must complete the Volunteer Completion Questionnaire at the end of their experience. Participants who fail to complete the final questionnaire will not be allowed to participate in the program in future semesters.