Background Check Policy for Hiring

University of Puget Sound is committed to providing a safe and secure environment conducive to academic and professional excellence. To do so, it is the college’s practice to hire well-qualified candidates for employment whose past behavior does not suggest a risk of future harm to the campus community.

Employment offers for regular full-time, part-time or temporary faculty and staff positions, whether to individuals new to university employment, individuals re-employed by the university, or individuals transferred to new positions, will be contingent upon the results of appropriate background checks. The nature of the position and the information disclosed during the application/interview process will determine the scope of the background checks applicable to the job. For faculty positions appropriate background checks will be determined by HR in consultation with the Professional Standards Committee. For staff positions, appropriate background checks will be determined by HR in consultation with the Staff Senate HR Policies and Practices Committee.

Relevant adverse information discovered through the background check process will be reviewed by a Human Resources representative and the applicable Vice President/Dean.  Adverse information discovered in the background check will not automatically disqualify an individual from employment. Decisions concerning employment will be made on a case-by-case basis. 

Information gained from any background checks process will only be shared on a need-to-know basis and in compliance with applicable laws and regulations. 


  • Staff background checks: 7 year criminal history, SSN trace, National Sex Offender Registry (education verification option, driving record to be added later)
  • Faculty background checks: National Sex Offender Registry
  • Invitation to complete the check is delivered following contingent offer of employment
  • No checks on current employees unless they apply for a new job or are transferred/promoted to a new job with different job-related checks required
  • Authorization and disclosure forms will be collected in online vendor system
  • Adverse findings will go to Cindy Matern, for consultation with area vice president, who makes the decision to proceed with hire or withdraw the contingent offer

Origination Date: Final December 2013

Owner: Human Resources

Contact: Associate Vice President for Human Resources/Career & Employment Services