The university says it's designed to ensure that a candidate's criminal history and potential child abuse records are reviewed. Current employees in sensitive or critical positions, such as auditing or IT must complete background checks if they haven't already done so.
The policy also requires current employees to disclose criminal arrests or convictions within a 72-hour period of their occurrence. The existence of a criminal conviction will not automatically disqualify an individual from employment or employment consideration.
The University will consider the nature and seriousness of the offense, the nature of the position, the length of time since the conviction and any discrepancies from what was self-reported by the individual.
A University spokesperson, Jill Shockey, says "Penn State's new background check policy is an important part of an overall plan to provide the safest environment possible for visitors, students and employees. It's also a more comprehensive, consistent policy that updates the University's prior policies that pertained to background checks."