1: Introduction

The Employee Handbook has been prepared for use by regular George Washington University (GW) employees. Regular full-time positions are anticipated to last for a period of more than six months and are generally scheduled for 40 hours per workweek. Regular part-time positions are anticipated to last for at least one fiscal year and are scheduled for more than 14 and fewer than 35 hours per work week. Employees filling regular positions are eligible for benefits, which may be prorated on the basis of the number of hours they are scheduled to work per workweek. The university also has temporary positions that are established to meet short-term needs. Employees filling temporary positions may not work for more than 700 hours per fiscal year in one or more temporary positions and are not eligible for employee benefits.

The handbook provides answers to frequently asked questions and summarizes university policies for regular employees. Keep the handbook readily available to answer work-related questions. The handbook and the policies it includes are not contracts with any employee. As an employer, the university reserves the right to determine whether and how to apply policies in particular cases. The university also reserves the right to change policies and employee benefits at any time.

Nothing in this handbook creates, or is intended to create, a promise or representation of continued employment for any employee. Any employee without an employment agreement for a specified duration is an employee-at-will. Employment-at-will may be terminated at the will of either the employer or the employee. Such employment may be terminated with or without cause and with or without notice, at any time by you or The George Washington University.

The handbook outlines various policies, services, facilities, and resources to help you become familiar with the GW community. The handbook is current as of the publication date. When operational procedures or policies are updated or changed, future editions of the handbook will include the changes, or you may receive updates by campus mail. For additional copies of this handbook, please contact the Department of Human Resource Services. The handbook is also available on the GW Web site at The version of the handbook on the GW Web site will be updated frequently. The handbook is not intended to supersede any GW policies. If, at any time, conflicts arise between statements in the handbook and existing policies, official policy statements will override handbook statements.

If you believe that there are differences between the information in this handbook and information given to you by your supervisor, please discuss the matter with him or her. Your supervisor may wish to refer to the Supervisor's Guidefor the use of the Supervisory Staff or to the appropriate university office for assistance.

If you need specific information about human resource policies not covered in this handbook, we encourage you to talk to your immediate supervisor, department head, or appropriate staff in the Department of Human Resource Services. All supervisors and departmental administrators will have an office copy of the handbook for reference and any updates that have been issued. All regular employees will also receive a copy of the handbook and copies of updates.

Throughout the handbook you will find references to collective bargaining agreements. These agreements supersede sections of the handbook that directly address the same issues.

We welcome and encourage your suggestions and comments concerning the content, quality, and usefulness of the handbook. A Comment Sheet is available on the GW Web site for this purpose. Your comments will be considered as we prepare future editions.


© September 1999 The George Washington University. If you have questions or comments about the Employee Handbook, please fill out the Comment Sheet or email