Any voluntary work placement that is approved by the Charles Sturt University (Charles Sturt) Careers and Skills Hub will not include workplace learning that is a component of a student’s course of study.
Unpaid voluntary work placement which may be approved by Charles Sturt’s Careers and Skills Hub must be compliant with the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth), in particular:
the student must not be doing “productive work”;
the main benefit of the arrangement should be to the student doing the placement; and
it must be clear that the student is receiving a meaningful learning experience, training or skill development.
Some examples of voluntary work placement may comprise some or all of the following elements (which is not an exhaustive list):
shadowing of an identified employee(s) of the host organisation;
structured learning activities (e.g., professional and/or skill development);
discontinuous work activities (e.g., 'one-off' or brief short-term voluntary positions for chiefly community organisations which would not otherwise necessitate casual or part-time appointments);
researching work practices and processes (eg., identifying skill sets, workplace competencies and the attributes expected of graduates);
recording information to support a student’s compilation of occupational profiles, e-portfolios, or other mechanisms to assist student understanding of the world-of-work and career development learning; and/or
surveying for comparisons between employers within particular industries (e.g., it may be advisable, owing to the Fair Work Act 2009, that students now visit more than one employer and treat their workplace learning as more of an opportunity to access and seek to understand various, alternate, employers and employment locations).
While performing a voluntary work placement, the student will:
perform all work allocated to the student to the best of the student’s ability;
exercise all due care and skill;
behave in a responsible and professional manner;
take reasonable care of themselves and others around them;
comply with all lawful and reasonable directions and instructions given to the student by officers or employees of the host organisation (including but not limited to all work, health and safety requirements);
maintain confidentiality as stipulated by the host organisation;
if required by the host organisation, obtain a criminal record and/or working with children check prior to commencing the voluntary work placement; and
observe all code of conduct, rules, regulations, protocols, policies, procedures and guidelines as set by the host organisation.
3. Host organisation responsibilities
When accepting the student on a voluntary work placement, the host organisation acknowledges and agrees:
that the voluntary workplace learning placement is unpaid;
that the nature of the voluntary work placement is compliant with the Fair Work Act 2009;
that Charles Sturt’s Careers and Skills Hub does not monitor any voluntary work placement activities undertaken by the student;
to provide the student access to the host organisation facilities for the purpose of voluntary work placement
to ensure that the host organisation’s workplace is safe with safety management systems in place and that appropriate risk assessments, induction and training are conducted;
to provide necessary supervision of the student; and
to make available to the student copies of relevant code of conduct, rules, regulations, protocols, policies, procedures and guidelines as set by the host organisation (including work, health and safety requirements).
The host organisation is entitled to satisfy itself that the student is competent to perform allotted tasks and that the student conducts themselves in a manner consistent with these Terms and Conditions.
If the host organisation is not so satisfied, it may:
restrict or limit access by the student to tasks within the workplace;
direct the student to leave the premises of the host organisation; and/or
terminate the voluntary work placement.
The host organisation will inform Charles Sturt’s Careers and Skills Hub:
f the student does not conduct themselves in a manner consistent with these Terms and Conditions; and/or
if the host organisation does any of the actions referred to in clause 4b.
Discipline of the student is the responsibility of Charles Sturt.
5. Queries or concerns
Any queries or concerns regarding a voluntary work placement should be directed to the Careers and Skills Hub.
If you have a question or need support, please get in touch.