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Nature of the Appointment

Researcher in EPA Laboratory

Image courtesy of EPA

An ORISE Intern/Research Participant at EPA is not an employee of ORISE, ORAU, EPA, the host facility, or any other office or agency. Instead, the participant has a guest appointment at the EPA-designated facility and is affiliated with ORISE for the administration of the appointment through the ORISE appointment letter and Terms of Appointment.

When accepting the Terms of Appointment, a participant agrees that the receipt of stipend payments from ORAU shall not be construed as an employment relationship and acknowledges there are no employment-related benefits (such as paid vacations, sick pay, maternity leave, unemployment compensation, worker’s compensation, etc.) associated with this appointment.

As a guest at an EPA facility, a participant is expected to devote full effort and time in pursuing the activities of the research program, publishing research results, and participating and presenting at appropriate scientific conferences and meetings.

Participants should:

  • Recognize that this is an educational experience and not a contract of employment.
  • Be at the host facility during normal business hours.
  • Observe and conform to all applicable rules, regulations, and requirements of the EPA facility including, but not limited to, those respecting environment, safety, security, operating and health physics procedures, drug-free workplace notification requirements and conduct.
  • Participate in the ongoing research activities of EPA.
  • Recognize that they are guests at EPA.
  • Recognize that they do not earn medical leave or personal leave, although the EPA facility may permit occasional absences (e.g., sick days and days for personal business) without reduction of the stipend payment or termination of the appointment. All absences must be approved in advance by the mentor and the EPA project officer/ORISE program coordinator.

Participants should NOT:

  • Undertake activities that are reserved for federal employees.
  • Supervise, appoint, mentor, hire or fire anyone.
  • Accept budget or program management authority, signature authority, official job titles, or function in any way as a representative of the federal government, even if directed to by a responsible federal official.