What You Should Know When Conducting Your Job or Internship Search


Career Center policy states that failure to show up for an interview suspends all interviewing privileges until a letter of apology is written to the recruiter with a copy of the correspondence to the Career Center prior to sending to the recruiter.


click to expandEqual Employment Opportunity and Nondiscrimination

Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) laws discourage discriminatory actions in recruiting, interviewing, and hiring. EEO laws protect all members of established classifications: race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age older than 40, disability, and service in the armed forces. State law may provide protection to other classifications. For more information regarding state legislature, contact your state’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. EEO laws only protect those within the classifications.

Interview questions must be alike and relevant to job tasks for all candidates. Hiring, starting salaries, signing bonuses, benefits, and other employment condition decisions cannot be made on the basis of:

  • Assumed perceptions of abilities, traits, characteristics, or performance
  • Protected class status
  • Birthplace, ancestry, culture, or linguistic characteristics (unless proven imperative to job duties)
  • Gender, pregnancy, or children (assuming ability to perform job)
  • Religion (unless the organization is a religiously affiliated institution)


click to expandGathering Demographic Information

Pre-employment collection of demographic information is ruled legal; employers need this information for government reports. This information must be collected on a voluntary basis apart from the application to avoid its use in the hiring process.


click to expandThe Impact of the American with Disabilities Act on Recruiting

Employment discrimination based on disabilities is illegal. Employers must make reasonable accommodations for disabled individuals. Accommodations must be made for those employed and potential applicants.

  • Job listings must be located where people with disabilities can access postings.
  • Postings must list needed, job-related physical and mental requirements.
  • Third party recruiters must follow all legal regulations.
  • Locations must be accessible, and accommodations must be made for the disabled.
  • References can not provide information about the individuals’ disability or mental impairment, but can provide information about accommodations made.
  • All questions asked during an interview must be essential to the position.
  • Alternative application forms must be available to accommodate all individuals.
  • Aptitude, knowledge skills, intelligence, and agility test are allowed if necessary for the position and accommodations must be made.
  • Medical tests, including blood alcohol level, can only be given after a conditional job offer has been made; results must be kept confidential.
  • A drug test can be made before a job offer is extended. If wrongly found positive, a retest must be administered for a hiring decision is made.

Selection must be made on the individual’s ability to perform job functions. Needed accommodations are determined reasonable based on cost, nature of accommodation, the employer’s financial resources, and the accommodations impact on the business operation.


click to expandRecruiting and Interviewing International Students

Discrimination based on citizenship status or national origin is illegal; however, employers must hire those authorized to work in the United States if the most qualified. Employers must verify employee’s eligibility to work in the United States within three days of employment.

Employers are not required to interview people with limited work authorization. All potential candidates must be notified of the employers work authorization policies to eliminate speculation of unfair treatment. If a candidate has the appropriate authorization, the organization cannot refuse to interview or hire based on citizenship status or national origin. If it is imperative to the position or required by law, citizenship or work status may be a qualifying factor for employment. Companies may sponsor candidates to work in the United States, but organizations are not required to do so.


click to expandThe Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act

Employers are not allowed to discriminate based on past, present, or future service in the Armed Forces. These regulations apply to all current or past members and applicants. Discrimination is not allowed for employment, reemployment after service, retention of employment during service, promotion, or other employment benefits.

Employers are also advised against asking a person’s military reserve status to avoid possible discrimination issues.


click to expandAffirmative Action and Diversity Recruiting

Unless there is a compelling interest to discriminate by race, color, or national origin, it is illegal to do so. Affirmative actions programs that promote preferential hiring based on race, color, or national origin are acceptable only if they are remedying prior discrimination which caused a “manifest racial imbalance.” In doing so, the plan must not have a severe negative impact on white employees. The remedy to the imbalance must only be a temporary plan without set quotas. Other qualifications must also be used in the decision making process, and the plan must only be used to obtain, not maintain, a diverse workforce.



Kaplan, Rochelle. "Legal Issues." National Association of Colleges and Employers, Winter 2008.