Ethical Job Search

The Meruelo Family Center for Career Development expects students to act professionally and ethically when interacting with employers and corporate partners.  An ethical job search includes the following aspects:

Student Expectations

Counseling Appointments

  • Students are expected to honor all scheduled (virtual and in-person) counseling appointments by being on time and prepared. Students who are 10 or more minutes late for an appointment, and who have not notified the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development, will be asked to reschedule.
  • Students who are late/miss 2 appointments may not be permitted to schedule an appointment for 30 days.
  • If a student cannot make a scheduled counseling appointment, he/she is required to notify the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development 24 hours in advance by canceling on Handshake, calling 574-631-5200 or emailing


  • Students will honor all virtual and in-person interview commitments by being on time, prepared, and professional in their actions. Students not honoring an interview commitment will be considered a No-Show (see No-Show policy details).
  • When selecting an interview time, students should not choose a time during a class or exam.  Being excused from class for an interview is at the sole discretion of each individual professor.
  • Canceling an on-campus interview must be done before the interview schedule "Sign-Up End Date" on the Handshake system - typically 48-72 hours before the interview (or more - check on Handshake).  If a student cancels after an interview schedule freezes and does not attend the interview, that student will be considered a No-Show.  Notifying the employer after the freeze date does not exempt you from this policy - please call the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development at 574.631.5200 if you have an issue with a scheduled interview.
  • Canceling an on-campus interview due to your attendance at an on-site/final round interview should be done 48 hours prior to the on-campus interview, by contacting the employer and the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development (574-631-5200 or  Failure to do so will result in the student being considered a No-Show for the on-campus interview.
  • Canceling an on-site/final round interview must be done 72 hours prior to the visit (not including weekends) by calling and emailing the company contact person.  Employers often incur significant expense for an on-site interview.  Only commit to an on-site interview if you have every intention of completing the full interview process.  If you have to cancel, doing so promptly may allow the company to recoup some costs and backfill the vacated interview time.  Canceling after the 72 hour window has passed and not attending the on-site interview will result in the student being considered a No-Show and will be required to meet with Career Development leadership to discuss.

Workshops and Events

With numerous activities now being virtual, if you register or sign up for an event  it means that you plan to attend. If you can no longer attend, rescind your RSVP 24 hours prior to the event. Many events have an attendance cap, and no-shows take the place of a student who could have benefited from the experience.

For in-person events, recruiters often use the registration list to order food and beverages.  Not attending costs the organization money and may negatively influence their decision to recruit at Notre Dame.

Interactions with Employers

  • If a student has arranged a meeting, office hours, phone call, or other interaction with an employer, virtual or in-person, the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development expects the student to be prepared, professional, and on time.  Failure to do so may result in the student being considered a No-Show.
  • If an employer has requested information, presence at a function, an answer to an offer, etc., the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development expects that a student will honor all reasonable requests to the best of their ability and in a timely fashion.

Self Representation

The following are practices that should be followed during the job/internship search process:

  • Provide accurate information on a resume and in answers to interview questions regarding academic background, GPA, work history, activities, and other qualifications.
  • Apply for interviews only when genuinely interested in the company and the position.
  • Meet all online application deadlines for submitting resumes and obtaining interview times.
  • Conduct extensive research about yourself, the industry, the company, and the position prior to your interviews.
  • Attend events sponsored by employers as your schedule permits.
  • Dress and conduct oneself in a professional manner befitting a Notre Dame student.

Accepting Internship or Job Offers Ethically

Key Points:

  • When accepting an offer for a job or internship you should fully evaluate that it is the opportunity you want and have every intention of following through on it.

  • If you aren't sure about accepting an offer, contact the Center for Career Development before accepting to talk through it with one of our staff.

When accepting an offer of full-time employment or an internship (either paid or unpaid) you are making a commitment to that employer. In essence, you have a professional agreement to fulfill your commitment.  If you have any questions or concerns about an offer, and whether you should accept or decline it, please contact the Center for Career Development immediately to meet with our staff.  We have helped hundreds of students navigate offers and we can help you evaluate delicate/difficult situations. We can also help you discern between multiple offers or offers you anticipate receiving.

Accelerated recruiting (for example, interviewing as a sophomore for internships after your junior year) can be especially overwhelming; our staff can provide guidance in navigating these timelines. To meet with a counselor to discuss your offer, sign up for a "Discerning Your Job/Internship Offer" appointment via Handshake. If you have an exploding offer (an offer with a short deadline) or if you have an imminent deadline, contact us by emailing careerdevelopment or calling our office at 574-631-5200.

Reneging on a job or internship offer you have already accepted is a serious matter. Besides impacting employers and their recruiting processes, reneging also has bearings on students:

  • You may have taken away an opportunity for another Notre Dame student.
  • In an era of social media and virtual connections, the world has become very small. Many university recruiters, especially in similar industries, interact at recruiting events and communicate on a regular basis.  Reneging could compromise your professional reputation and impact future opportunities.
  • An employer may reevaluate their relationship with Notre Dame which may limit opportunities for current and future students.

When a student reneges (i.e. accepting a job offer via verbal or written agreement, but later declines the offer) it affects their future recruiting relationship with Notre Dame. If a student accepts an offer of employment, admission to a graduate or professional school, or other post-graduate career opportunity, he/she must withdraw from the recruiting process immediately. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Not applying to future job/internship postings.

  • Declining all future interview invitations.

  • Canceling any active applications.

  • Contacting all recruiters to inform them of your wish to be removed from the interviewing and recruitment process (this includes all scheduled interviews).

Students who renege on an offer of employment will be held accountable by the University. Any student who reneges on a full-time job offer or internship will be required to meet with a Student Affairs senor administrator to discuss the circumstances of why the offer was reneged and determine appropriate consequences which typically include:

  • A notation in the student’s educational record
  • Suspension of access to Handshake
  • Loss of Center for Career Development services and privileges
  • Notification and referral to the applicable College Dean


No-Show Policy

Students who fail to attend a scheduled interview, or fail to cancel an interview within the timeline parameters stated in the Ethical Job Search Contract will be considered a No-Show for that interview (virtual or in-person).  The following details the steps the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development will take, student obligations, and potential consequences.  Please note that until a final decision is made concerning your missed interview, students are expected to meet interview obligations for which you are already scheduled.

  • If an employer reports a student as a No-Show for a scheduled interview, that student’s Handshake account will be blocked immediately—thus preventing that student from applying to any jobs or signing up for any additional interviews. To be reinstated on the Handshake system, the student will need to:
    • Complete a Missed Interview Explanation Form (this will be emailed to the student).
    • Meet with a Career Development staff member to request reinstatement.
    • Write an email of apology/explanation to the employer.
    • Bring the Missed Interview Explanation Form and draft email to the scheduled meeting. 
  • The Meruelo Family Center for Career Development will review the Missed Interview Explanation Form and make its determination.
  • The missed interview may be deemed an excused absence. An excused absence indicates a compelling reason for the absence (serious illness, family emergency), and documentation of the emergency (e.g. note from University Health Services, rector, resident assistant).  If the missed interview is deemed an excused absence, the student will be reinstated on the Handshake system immediately.
  • The missed interview may be deemed an unexcused absence.  An unexcused absence may be an absence for a non-compelling reason (copied the wrong date or time, overslept, simply forgot about the interview), or it may be for a compelling reason but no corroborating evidence was provided.
  • First Offense: The first unexcused missed interview will result in loss of application/scheduling privileges for seven calendar days.  During this period, one’s Handshake account will be deactivated, preventing one from applying for positions or responding to companies who extend offers for interviews.  Students will be expected to meet interview obligations previously scheduled prior to account deactivation.
  • Second Offense: The second unexcused absence will result in suspension from all on-campus recruiting activities for the remainder of the academic year.

Employer Expectations - Notre Dame Employment Offer Policy

The University of Notre Dame Meruelo Family Center for Career Development expects students to agree to these job search ethics prior to participating in any on-campus interviews.  Students are penalized for missing interviews, canceling appointments, etc.  Career Development enforces a zero-tolerance policy for students who renege on offers of employment or who conduct themselves unethically during their search.  In return, Career Development asks employers to:

  • Provide students a minimum of three business days’ notice for an off-campus interview.  This allows students to make proper travel arrangements to avoid academic and other conflicts.
  • Provide fair and reasonable time periods for students to evaluate employment offers prior to making a decision that will affect their future careers and personal lives.  Asking a student if he or she is ready to make a decision on the spot, or asking a student to respond to a hypothetical offer is considered unacceptable practice.  Exploding offers put undue pressure on students and compromise our efforts to enforce student policy against reneging.
  • Uphold job offers.  Rescinding an offer means the student must restart their job search, often after declining other offers.

University of Notre Dame Offer Dates for 2023-2024 Academic Year


2024 Summer Internship Offers

Before August 1, 2023 August 15, 2023
August 1 - September 30, 2023 October 15, 2023
October 1, 2023 and beyond 2 weeks from offer origination


2024 Full-Time Job Offers

Upon completion of summer internship September 15, 2023
Before September 1, 2023 September 15, 2023
Before October 1, 2023 October 15, 2023
October 1, 2023 and beyond 2 weeks from the formal offer