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May 17 Background Check Deadline Approaching

Wednesday, April 19, 2017


Complete Your Background Check by May 17, 2017


As we have shared with you over the course of the last six months, the revised Lehigh University Protection of Minors Policy and Pennsylvania’s Child Protective Services Law require that all faculty and staff undergo background checks in order for the University to remain compliant.


This is the homestretch phase of implementing this new practice.  A large majority of employees have completed the process. All background checks must be completed by May 17, 2017.

Individuals in every office or department of the university have received instructions to initiate the process. Instructions are also available on the Human Resources website


As the process has continued, some questions have arisen. Here are some important facts for you to keep in mind:

  1. The only option to complete your background checks is online. There is no paper option for completing this process. The online process was vetted by information security professionals in LTS and deemed a safe process.
  2. In the interest of convenience, fingerprinting facilities are available to all employees at the Mail Center in Farrington Square. Appointments are encouraged.  More information, including a scheduler that can be used to make an appointment, is available at https://financeadmin.lehigh.edu/content/cogent-fingerprinting.
  3. If you meet the criteria, it may be possible for you to waive the fingerprinting portion of the process. In order to be eligible for the waiver, you must be able to certify that you meet all three of the following requirements:
    • The faculty or staff member does not have “direct contact with minors” as defined in the Protection of Minors Policy; AND
    • The faculty or staff member has been a Pennsylvania state resident for the entirety of the past 10-year period, or, if they have not been a Pennsylvania state resident for the entirety of the past 10-year period, they have completed a full background check certification (i.e., all three checks listed above, including the FBI fingerprint check) at any time since establishing Pennsylvania residency and can provide such certification to the University; AND
    • The faculty or staff member swears or affirms in writing that they have not been convicted of any of the 22 criminal offenses that disqualify a person from activities having “direct contact with children” pursuant to Pennsylvania Act 153, nor have they been convicted of any offense similar in nature to the Act 153 disqualifying crimes under laws of any other state or past laws of Pennsylvania.
  4. Living up to the Principles of Our Equitable Community includes demonstrating respect for our colleagues across campus. Please remember that those administering the background check process – including employees in the Office of General Counsel, Human Resources, and the Mail Center– are doing so as part of their role at Lehigh and in accordance with the University’s policy and state law.


Complying with state law and policy endorsed by the University Board of Trustees is the responsibility of all Lehigh employees.