Working With Minors

When programming with minors (anybody under the age of 18), it’s important to adhere to the following guidelines for the protection of all parties involved. The University’s Youth Protection Oversight Committee oversees work with minors. Review their webpage for additional detail and information. 

Additional University Resources
WUSTL Policy Regarding Minors


Any programs or activities that involve interactions with minors on University property, or University-sponsored programs or activities held at off-campus locations, must be registered with the University. Review details here.


For any program involving minors, we want to ensure that we have confirmed the identity and background of participating adults. The University Youth Protection Oversight Committee requires all programs involved with minors register on their site. Depending on the program, this may involve an Online Background Check.

• Online Registration with University Youth Protection Oversight Committee: All programs working with minors need to register their programs with the University Youth Protection here.

• Online Background Checks: These are required for most on-campus activities involving minors. Requires a 1 week lead time. There are some cases where a background check may not be necessary. Contact the Office for Socially Engaged Practice to determine what your program needs.


Students and faculty participating in programs involving minors should participate in at least one of the following training options. Contact the Office for Socially Engaged Practice to discuss the appropriate training for your program.

• Program-led session: Program leadership may offer a training session to review program-specific policies and expectations. This may involve reviewing the Policies Regarding Minors Training Document.

• Online training: Required for all programs that require a background check and work in-person with minors. Available through Youth Protection Oversight Committee.

• Campus-led session: More in-depth training on Sexual Abuse Prevention and Awareness is available for specific groups. Contact the Youth Protection Oversight Committee at for more information.

• Program director trainings: Annual classroom trainings are required for program directors. Contact the Youth Protection Oversight Committee for more information.


For most programs, minors participating in Washington University programs need written permission from their parents or guardians.

• Contact the Office for Socially Engaged Practice to determine who should create, review, and collect permission forms for your program.

• If minors are coming to campus on a trip organized by their school or a non-University program, that entity should provide permission forms.

• If all minors will be accompanied by their parents (i.e. admissions tours), no permission forms are needed.

• Emergency contact information for all program participants should be kept on file for the duration of any program.

• Any minors who may be photographed, video recorded, or otherwise represented must have a Media Release & Authorization signed by their parent or guardian on file. Contact Sam Fox School Communications or the Office for Socially Engaged Practice for more information.


Most importantly, use your best judgment when working with minors — get to know them, and listen to their needs.

  • Ask youth for feedback and actively listen to them.
  • Model behavior for youth, including respect and care for others.
  • Be sure to ask for help from others when you are working with youth.
  • Review the University’s Policy Regarding Minors to answer any further questions.
  • All incidents involving minors, such as restraint or conflict, must be reported to your supervisor or the program director. Report incidents to the Youth Protection Oversight Committee here.

Every member of the WashU community has a responsibility to report actual or suspected abuse or inappropriate activity. Contact your supervisor or program director for more information.