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Human Resources Department
Florida Gulf Coast University
Modular 2
10501 FGCU Blvd. South
Fort Myers, FL 33965-6565

Tele: (239) 590-1400
Fax: (239) 590-1011
Email: hresources@fgcu.edu

If you have a hearing or speech impairment, call Florida Gulf Coast University using the Florida Relay at 711.

Employee Handbook

 
 

VIII. Your Rights and Responsibilities

Diversity Statement

Florida Gulf Coast University is committed to building and maintaining a diverse, accessible, civil, and supportive learning community. It fosters respect and understanding among all cultures and all individuals who work, study, live, and teach within this community. Bigotry, expressions of hatred or prejudice, behaviors that infringe upon the freedom and respect that every individual deserves, and harassment of any kind transgress the University’s vision, mission and guiding principles. Just as learning benefits from the interplay of teaching and scholarship in a variety of disciplines, so does the University community learn and profit from diverse cultures and perspectives.  Florida Gulf Coast University will continue to pursue its aspirations by fostering a welcoming environment through diversity and inclusion.

Non-Discrimination and Anti-Harrassment

Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) is committed to ensuring equity and fairness for all University employees, students, visitors, vendors and contractors. Our commitment to these principles is essential to fostering a campus community that values diversity and inclusion in our education, employment and business operations. We want individuals to feel welcomed and supported regardless of race, color, religion, age, disability, sex, national origin, marital status, sexual orientation, veteran status, or genetic predisposition.

In accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws, and also FGCU regulations, policies and practice, the University does not condone discrimination, harassment, including sexual harassment, and retaliation on any basis. This prohibition extends to enforcement of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act.

FGCU's policies cover access and equity in the conduct of programs, services and activities throughout all divisions, departments and units of the University. Also, all employment actions will support equal opportunity and advance inclusion.

Questions regarding this Institutional Statement or compliance with the laws applicable thereto, should be directed to the Office of Equity and Diversity at (239) 590-7405, or outside Lee County (800) 590-3428. Thank you.

For more information, refer to Policy: 1.006 Non-Discrimination and Anti-Harassment Complaint Policyand Procedure.

Access for Persons with Disabilities

Florida Gulf Coast University is committed to a policy ensuring that persons with disabilities are not discriminated against and that they have equal opportunity and access to all of the rights and privileges enjoyed by those who are not disabled.  Florida Gulf Coast University will comply with all provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended in 2008 (ADAAA) and related regulations, ordinance and laws, and will provide, upon request, reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with a disability.

Questions regarding this abbreviated statement or compliance with its provisions as it relates to accessing University facilities, programs, services or activities should be directed to the Office of Adaptive Services at (239) 590-7956 or the Office of Equity and Diversity at (239) 590-7405, or outside Lee County (800) 590-3428.

HIV/AIDS

It is the policy of the University to balance the rights of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) victims to an education and employment against the rights of students and University employees to an environment in which they are protected from contracting the disease. Education can exercise some control over the spread of the disease and help the public to respond in a reasoned manner. The University is committed to providing the University community and the public at large with education on the nature and transmission of the disease and the legal rights of HIV/AIDS victims.

Persons who know or suspect they are sero-positive are expected to seek expert medical advice and are obligated, ethically and legally, to conduct themselves responsibly for the protection of others.

The University has designated HIV/AIDS counselors who are available to the university community. For additional information, contact Counseling and Student Health Services.

Drug Free Workplace

The unlawful sale, purchase, manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession or use of a controlled substance or the unlawful possession and use of alcohol is prohibited in and on Florida Gulf Coast University owned or controlled property, as part of any of its activities, or within a 200 foot perimeter of the University property. No employee is to report to work or any University activity while under the influence of illegal drugs or alcohol. Violation of these policies by an employee shall be reason for evaluation/treatment for a drug or alcohol use disorder or for disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment from the University. Such action will be in accordance with policies and procedures; or referral for prosecution consistent with local, state and federal law. To comply with the Federal Drug-Free Schools/Campus Act, Florida Gulf Coast University will provide annual notice regarding its drug prevention program to employees and conduct a biennial review of the program.

In order to comply with federal law, the University has the following requirements:

  • An individual employed by a grant or contract shall notify his/her supervisor or other appropriate management representative of any criminal drug statute conviction for a violation occurring in the workplace no later than five days after such conviction.
  • TheUniversity shall notify any federal contracting agency within 10 days of having received notice that an employee engaged in the performance of such contract or grant has had a criminal drug statute conviction for a violation occurring in the workplace.
  • The University will take appropriate personnel action against any employee who is convicted for a violation occurring in the workplace or will require the employee's satisfactory participation in a drug abuse assistance or rehabilitation program.

For additional information, contact Human Resources.

Conduct and Behavior

As responsible individuals and as employees of Florida Gulf Coast University, personal conduct is a matter of importance, both on and off-the-job. On-the-job courtesy, cooperation and a positive attitude in all dealings are necessary.

Off-the-job activities are personal, but may affect your employment. Activities that bring discredit to you may reflect on the university; therefore, the university expects you to observe acceptable standards of behavior, to abide by established laws, and to avoid any inappropriate actions that may involve the university in your personal affairs.

Computer and Network Use

The University Technology Committee has developed policies governing the use of computers and related information technology resources owned and operated by Florida Gulf Coast University. The Technology Acceptable Use Policy and Procedure is located at http://www.fgcu.edu/generalcounsel/files/policies/3_022_Technology_Use_09_03_09.pdf.  These policies apply to all employees who use FGCU computing resources, whether on campus or from remote locations. Questions regarding specific provisions of the policy should be directed to the Information Resources Committee.

The intent of the Technology Acceptable Use Policy and Procedure is to permit maximum freedom of FGCU computing and network use consistent with local, state, and federal law, University policy, and a productive working environment, while securing the University's computing and networking systems to a reasonable and economically feasible degree against unauthorized access and/or abuse. All users of University computing and network resources are expected to utilize the equipment for University use only.

Computing resources are not to be used for personal commercial or political purposes or for personal financial or other personal benefit where such use incurs a cost to the University and is not directly related to one's official role in the University.

While not an exhaustive list, the following uses of e-mail are considered inappropriate and unacceptable. In general, e-mail shall not be used for the initiation or re-transmission of chain mail that misuses or disrupts resources; harassing or hate mail; virus hoaxes; unsolicited e-mail that is not related to University business and is sent without a reasonable expectation that the recipient would welcome receiving it; or, any actions that defraud another or misrepresent or fail to accurately identify the sender.

While the University does not routinely monitor individual usage of its computing resources, it may do so without notice. The University, in its discretion, may disclose the results of any such general or individual monitoring, including the contents and records of individual communications, to appropriate University personnel or law enforcement agencies and may use those results in appropriate university disciplinary proceedings.

Attendance

Regular attendance is important and considered a basic responsibility of each employee. Others depend upon you to accomplish your work duties. Your supervisor or the administrator in charge of your department should approve absences or necessary lateness in advance.

Please refer to the benefits section of this handbook for more information concerning accrual and use of leave time. Also consult the appropriate administrator in your department for specific procedures regarding use of leave time.

Public Records

Under Florida law, most University documents and records are open for public inspection upon request. However, some records or portions of records are protected. To insure full compliance with these laws, refer public information requests to your supervisor or the Office of the University Spokesperson.

You have the right to review the contents of your official personnel file maintained in Human Resources.

Student Records

As a University employee, you are likely to handle or have access to student education records, which may require protection. You will be required to follow all policies, practices and procedures outlined in the University’s Education Records Policy, 3.12 and Student Records Management & Procedures Guide. Therefore, in compliance with the guidelines incorporated in the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, 1974 – (FERPA), Section 1002.22, Florida Statutes, and the Florida Gulf Coast University’s Student Records Policy, you are to take every precaution to protect the integrity of our student records.

The federal law prohibits the disclosure of information contained in students’ academic records to third parties -- including fellow students, parents, spouses, etc. -- without the student’s written consent. The law does not permit the release of such information to an Early Admitted or Dual Enrolled student’s parents, regardless of the age of the student. Further, only University employees with a “need to know” may review a student’s education record.

References to Student Records, Academic Records or Education records are one in the same. These records consist of information which pertains to a student’s academic performance and history. Education records do not include student conduct, medical, law enforcement, personal records or notes maintained by faculty/staff, student employment, or alumni records. However, these non-educational records do fall within the parameters of Florida’s Public Records Law, Chapter 119, Florida Statutes, and other state or federal laws, which requires the information be maintained as confidential.

It is your responsibility to understand the difference between public (Directory Information) and confidential information. FERPA information is provided to all employees who have need to access student records. Employees are encouraged to seek advice and/or clarification of the University Registrar when needed.

Florida Statute, section 1002.22, which mirrors the federal requirements, exempts student records from the definition of “public records” under the State’s Open Records Act. No one other than the student has the right, under the Public Records Act, to see the student’s records.

Outside Employment Activity/Conflict of Interest

You are expected to have a primary obligation to the University and to perform all duties pertinent to your position and employment in a full and competent manner. Being involved in an outside employment or other activity that materially interferes with your obligations to the University is prohibited. You should not claim to be an official University representative in connection with any outside employment or activity or use the University's name, proprietary marks or goodwill to promote an outside employment or other activities, unless prior written approval is obtained according to University regulations and policies.

Before you accept a paid or unpaid job outside of your University employment, or before you become involved in any activity that may be considered a conflict of interest, you must obtain approval each fiscal year, by submitting a "Outside Employment Activity Approval Request" form.

Outside Employment/Activity Regulation
Outside Employment Activity Approval Request form

Financial Disclosure

Certain A&P and Support Personnel employees are required to file, as a condition of employment, disclosure of personal interests and such other information on the Statement of Financial Interests Form, provided by the Florida Department of State. The form must be filed within 30 days of employment or appointment. Thereafter, the form must be filed by July 1, following each calendar year they hold their positions.

Fraudulent or Dishonest Acts

Employees are expected to abide by laws and regulations. Supervisors and department heads are responsible for establishing and maintaining proper internal controls that will provide for the security and accountability of the resources entrusted to them and to be aware of the signs of fraudulent or other dishonest acts, should they occur. As an employee of the State University System, you are required to observe the provisions of the Code of Ethics for Public Officers and Employees, Part III of Chapter 112, F.S.

The Office of Internal Audit has been designated the official contact for reporting suspected fraudulent or other dishonest acts. If you have a reasonable basis for believing such acts have occurred, you have a responsibility to report it to your supervisor, appropriate administrator, or the Office of Internal Audit. If it is determined that an investigation is warranted, the Office of Internal Audit will investigate the suspected fraudulent or dishonest act.

You must cooperate fully with those performing an investigation pursuant to this policy. Employees found to have participated in fraudulent or dishonest acts will be subject to disciplinary action pursuant to personnel policies and rules, applicable collective bargaining agreements and/or criminal or civil actions.

Section 112.3187, F.S. (Whistle-blower's Act), provides that individuals who report suspected fraudulent or other dishonest acts, and those cooperating with the ensuing investigation, will be protected from retaliatory action.

Rev. 05/08

Nepotism

Employment of relatives is allowed where there is no direct supervisory responsibility between relatives, and where functions of their positions do not create a conflict of interest, or if there is a conflict of interest, there is a demonstrated critical shortage of qualified applicants.

Relatives or related persons is defined to mean those who live in the same residence as the employee or is related to the employee as father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, first cousin, nephew, niece, husband, wife, father-in-law, mother-in-law, daughter-in-law, son-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, stepfather, stepmother, stepson, stepdaughter, stepsister, stepbrother, half brother or half sister.

For more information click here.

Political Participation

When authorized by the president, you may be a candidate for or hold a local public office that does not conflict or interfere with your University employment. You may not take any active part in a political campaign while on duty or during any period when required to perform services for which compensation is received.

Political campaigning is forbidden on the FGCU campus except for student and other University-related elections.

For more information click here.

University Property

Proper care of all University-owned property will ensure better operation and reduce maintenance and replacement costs. Misuse of equipment or property impacts the effective operation of the work unit and the services we provide. You are responsible for using assigned equipment in a safe and efficient manner, and protecting against loss or theft.

University-owned property should only be used for official University business. Inventory records include the physical location of the property. With approval of your department head, you may be authorized to take University-owned equipment home to perform official University business. A checkout form must be completed when University property is to be removed, on a temporary basis, from its recorded location for use on or off campus (this includes both tagged items and items not tagged).

Grievances

As a matter of policy, the University encourages the informal resolution of all problems, whenever possible and encourages open communication so that the need to resort to the formal grievance procedure is not necessary. If you are unable to resolve a concern or problem with your supervisor, you should contact Human Resources. A representative of Human Resources will assist in determining grievability and advise you regarding your rights to file a grievance under the appropriate grievance or complaint procedure. There are different grievance procedures available to an employee based on a variety of factors.

For more information click here.

Disciplinary Actions

All employees are expected to respect the rights of others, to exhibit levels of behavior supporting the University Mission, Guiding Principles, purposes and best interests of the University, to perform assigned duties in an orderly and efficient manner, and to adhere to all University rules and directives. An employee who repeatedly violates the University's standards of conduct, whether of the same or different nature, and, who despite repeated warnings, fails to correct his or her behavior to conform to reasonable conduct or work standards will be subject to progressive and cumulative disciplinary action.

For more information click here.

Work Rules – Overtime

There are two categories of Support Personnel employment: Non-exempt and Exempt. These categories are based upon the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and generally govern overtime compensation. Since the University operates on a fixed budget, overtime work should be limited to emergency situations or preplanned and approved for peak work periods. Your supervisor is responsible for arranging the work schedule to minimize overtime.

As an A&P employee, under the FLSA you are not eligible to earn compensatory leave. Additionally, you do not complete an Attendance & Leave Report Form on a bi-weekly basis. When you plan to use annual or sick leave the Faculty/A&P Application for Leave form must be submitted to your supervisor for approval. The original of the multi-part form is submitted to the HR/Payroll office.

Non-exempt Support Personnel Employment Category

If you are employed in a classification designated as "non-exempt", under the FLSA you are restricted to a 40-hour workweek.

The time you work must be entered on the Support Personnel Attendance and Leave Report. All hours worked must be compensated for, including overtime, when you are not granted equal time off within the same workweek. An accurate daily and weekly record of your hours worked must be kept. At the end of each day the hours worked and leave taken will be rounded to the nearest quarter of an hour.

Overtime is defined as the hours of work, excluding holidays and leave with pay, in excess of 40 hours during the established workweek. As a non-exempt employee, you must either be paid at the rate of time and one-half or compensated with overtime compensatory leave at the rate of time and one-half. Your department head may elect to pay for any or all of your accrued overtime compensatory leave at any time, i.e., upon expiration of funding for a Contract or Grant position or the transfer of the employee from one non-exempt position to another non-exempt position. At no time can you have more than 120 hours of overtime compensatory leave accrued.

Regardless of the funding sources(s) from which you are paid, all hours actually worked must be combined within the workweek for overtime purposes.

Total hours you are to be paid will include your hours worked, holidays, annual leave, sick leave, administrative leave and special or overtime compensatory leave taken (used). Upon reasonable notice, you may be required to use any part of your accrued compensatory leave credits. If you do not have an accrued leave balance to cover absences, you must be paid for less than 40 hours in the workweek. Upon separation from the University, you shall be paid for all accumulated hours of overtime compensatory leave.

Exempt Support Personnel Employment Category

If you are employed in a classification designated as "exempt" from the Fair Labor Standards Act, you are an employee whose duties and functions are primarily executive, professional or administrative in nature and are not eligible to receive cash payment for overtime. You may receive regular compensatory leave for hours worked over 40 on an hour for hour basis, when approved in advance by your supervisor.

The time you work must be entered on the Support Personnel Attendance and Leave Report. All hours worked must be compensated for, including overtime, when you are not granted equal time off within the same workweek. An accurate daily and weekly record of your hours worked must be kept. At the end of each day the hours worked and leave taken will be rounded to the nearest quarter of an hour.

Overtime is defined as the hours of work, excluding holidays and leave with pay, in excess of 40 hours during the established workweek. As an exempt employee, you may receive up to 120 hours of regular compensatory leave on an hour-for-hour basis for all required overtime worked. At no time can you have more than 120 hours of regular compensatory leave accrued. Payment for unused regular compensatory leave credits is not normally permitted when you separate from the University or when you transfer out of the Support Personnel position.

Total hours you are to be paid will include your hours worked, holidays, annual leave, sick leave, administrative leave and special or overtime compensatory leave taken (used).