Volunteer Program

Many people volunteer their time and services in support of Cal Poly’s mission, thus providing a valuable benefit to the CSU and Cal Poly.  This is done in a wide variety of ways and in many different areas across campus.  A volunteer is an individual who performs work or provides services to the University without remuneration of any kind.  The department and volunteer must complete the Volunteer Assignment Form [DocuSign] prior to the start of the assignment. All volunteers will also complete Mandated Reporter Acknowledgement as part of the DocuSign packet.

Volunteers are eligible for workers’ compensation* and state liability coverage.  A volunteer who is authorized to drive a vehicle on official state business may be entitled to reimbursement for travel expenses in accordance with CSU policies and procedures as determined appropriate for the volunteer assignment.  The Request to Operate Vehicles on University (State) Business Form [DocuSign] and/or the Authorization to use Privately Owned Vehicles on State Business forms must be on file prior to the use of any vehicle.  The Travel Request (Form 1A) must be approved prior to the departure date.

Volunteers must be provided the necessary training and supervision to safely carry out the assignment.  Additionally, volunteers must meet the approved license/certification requirements, Confidentiality-Security Agreement, the Responsible Use Policy, and fingerprinting and background checks, as applicable.  Further, all volunteer assignments must be consistent with the CSU Nepotism Policy and the CSU Policy on the Employment of Minors, as appropriate.  Duties of the volunteer assignment must not coincide with any non-exempt Cal Poly position the person may currently hold. 

Temporary identification cards are available to community members only.  If required for the assignment, this may allow for access to library resources, Media Distribution Services, and the purchasing of a parking permit.  To learn who is eligible for Cal Poly photo identification card, please visit PolyCard.

Volunteers (not identified as an “instructor of record” on the Schedule of Classes) who need access to Cal Poly’s information and technology resources must complete the Affiliated Person Account Request Form and adhere to its written agreement.

When utilizing a volunteer who is a minor, the following factors will apply:

  • Minors must obtain certificates of age or permits to work prior to the appointment date.
  • Minors performing delivery work must do so by foot, bicycle and public transportation.
  • Minors may NOT work in occupations that involve power machinery, kitchen work, and certain work in connection with the maintenance of cars, trucks, machines or equipment, or work in warehouses.
  • Minors between the ages of 14 and 15 years old:
    • May work a maximum of 3 hours on a day they are required to attend school
    • May work a maximum of 18 hours a week when school is in session
    • May work a  maximum of 8 hours per day, or 40 hours per week with school is NOT in session
    • May work between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. (may work until 9:00 p.m. between June 1 and Labor Day)
    • Note, federal law permits some leeway for minors performing sports-attendant duties
  • Minors between the ages  of 16 and 17 years old:
    • May work a maximum of 4 hours on a day they are required to attend school for four hours or more
    • May work a maximum of 8 hours on a school day that precedes a non-school day (e.g. Friday)
    • May work a maximum of 8 hours per day, or 48 hours per week with school is NOT in session
    • May work between the hours of 5:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. (may work until 12:30 p.m. preceding a non-school day)

For questions regarding volunteers and the identification process, please contact Kathryn Villarreal, Workers' Compensation Analyst (805-756-5427; email

* The University does not provide Workers’ Compensation coverage to students participating in university-sponsored community service programs.  As such, students enrolled in CSU Nursing, Allied Health, Social Work, or Education credential programs are typically covered by the Student Professional Liability Insurance Program.