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Student Clearances

DO I NEED CLEARANCES?
Students who are interested in volunteer opportunities with youth MUST obtain the necessary clearances before starting their service. The Lindy Center for Civic Engagement is happy to help you through this process and assume relevant costs.

To learn more about Drexel's policy regrading clearances, please visit http://drexel.edu/hr/resources/policies/dupolicies/hr52/

 

The Lindy Center would like to highlight that the forms used for these clearances are state and federal forms and may not be inclusive of all genders, races, or ethnicities.

WHAT’S REQUIRED?

1. Pennsylvania Child Abuse Clearance

  • Completed online through https://www.compass.state.pa.us/cwis/

  • $0 fee for volunteers

  • Typically returned in 1-5 days; student sends clearance to clearances@drexel.edu

  • Please click here for a guide to walk you through the process

2. Pennsylvania State Police Criminal Record Check

  • Completed online through https://epatch.state.pa.us/
  • $0 fee for volunteers
  • Returned immediately; student sends clearance to clearances@drexel.edu
  • Please click here for a guide to walk you through the process

3. Federal Bureau of Investigation Criminal Background Check

  •  $24.25 fee for volunteers paid by Lindy Center; $0 if volunteer has been resident of Pennsylvania for the last 10 years
  • Results typically available to Lindy Center in 1-5 days
  • Have you been a resident of Pennsylvania for the last 10 years?
    • If Yes, I have been a resident of Pennsylvania for the last 10 years, then:
      Complete this “PEBC Disclosure Statement Application for Volunteers” (with actual signature, not typed) and send to clearances@drexel.edu.
    • If No, I have NOT been a resident of Pennsylvania for the last 10 years, then:
        - Enter your personal information here.
        - The Lindy Center will send you a unique “registration code” and details on where/when to get fingerprints taken.
        - Once you have completed fingerprints, the Lindy Center will be able to look up the results. There is no need to send a receipt.

4. PEBC Confidential Consent and Release for Background Reports

Please note that you will receive a confirmation email from clearances@drexel.edu once your clearances are fully complete. You are not authorized to serve with youth until ALL FOUR (4) steps are finalized. If you are seeking clearances for a paid position through student employment or Federal Work Study, please note that there is a different process. Please inquire with your supervisor for next steps.

Clearances FAQs:

How do I know if I need to get clearances?

If you are volunteering with minors (children under the age of 18), you will need to be cleared according to the directions above. This could include volunteering with kids for CIVC 101, serving at an afterschool program, or leading tours for high schoolers. Please contact our office via clearances@drexel.edu if you are unsure if you or your group need clearances.

I think I started this process already.


How do I know if I am cleared?

Please email clearances@drexel.edu to determine what steps of the process you have finished. If you are currently enrolled in CIVC 101, please email your Teaching Assistant.


What if I have clearances from another job or volunteer opportunity or college department?

Not all background checks run by companies include a PA Child Abuse History Clearance. Please forward us all clearances you have to clearances@drexel.edu so we can evaluate if any pieces are missing.


What if I have clearances from another state?

Pennsylvania law states that in order to serve with minors in Pennsylvania you must be cleared in Pennsylvania according to the directions above. This means clearances from other states will not allow you to volunteer with youth in PA.

Can I use these clearances for a job or co-op?

These clearances only apply to volunteer (unpaid) opportunities, which is why Drexel covers the cost. If you need clearances for work, your employee should initiate and pay for clearances, since the process is different for paid work.


What if I don’t want to do these clearances for class or volunteering?

Volunteering with youth is not required in most cases. If you do not want to get clearances, you cannot volunteer with youth. For CIVC 101 students, you can choose to volunteer at a different site instead of a site that serves with minors. If you are enrolled in a Community-Based Learning (CBL) class that requires volunteering with youth, we suggest you enroll in a different class or speak with your professor about alternative service. If you are looking for a volunteer opportunity and do not want to get cleared, we are happy to suggest other organizations that do not work with minors. Feel free to browse our civic engagement database. If your student group is volunteering with minors and you do not want to get cleared, you will not be able to serve for that specific opportunity.


Where do I go to ask questions?

Please feel free to email us at clearances@drexel.edu or visit us at the Lindy Center at 3210 Cherry Street between the hours of 9am-5pm M-F. Please make sure to tell us specifically what you need clearances for and if you have started the process already.


How do I know if I need to be fingerprinted?

If you have lived in Pennsylvania for the last 10 years (as a full-time resident), you must complete a PEBC Disclosure Statement Application for Volunteers instead of getting fingerprints. If you have lived outside of Pennsylvania in the last ten years, you must get fingerprinted. Please see step 3 above on full instructions to get fingerprinted.


How can I access a copy of my clearances?

Please email clearances@drexel.edu in order to request a copy of your clearances. Please include your full name as well as when you got your clearances (i.e. fall 2016 during CIVC 101 or March 2017 with my student organizations).


Do I need to bring ID?

If you need to get fingerprinted, YES you must bring a state-issued ID. This could be a driver’s license, state-issued ID card, military ID, or passport. If you are an international student, please bring your passport. Your student ID will NOT be accepted as a form of identification.


How long do these clearances last?

Once completed, these clearances are good for 5 years. Please note that these clearances are only applicable to volunteering opportunities. They will not apply to paid work with minors.