1.3 Employment of Minors

This policy was last updated September 13, 2022. See the update history page for more information.

It is Institute policy to maintain certain personnel and safety practices concerning the employment of minors. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the federal government place many restrictions on the type of work that may be performed by minors and the hours during which they may be employed. As a consequence, the following should be adhered to:

No one under the age of 16 may be employed in any capacity on either a part-time or a full-time basis. Persons under 18 years of age must present certification that they are legally eligible to work. This Educational Certificate is obtained through their school system.

Employment of individuals under the age of 18 requires special consideration. They may not be hired in any capacity, full-time or part-time, where a security clearance is required, or in work where considerations of safety normally require a high degree of training, experience, or knowledge. Such work may include, but not be limited to: operation of a motor vehicle or freight elevator; use of flammable, toxic, or radioactive materials, or explosives; work under certain physical circumstances such as confined spaces and certain heights; work with high-voltage apparatus; or any other activity which may be deemed restricted by the Environment, Health and Safety Office. Please refer to their website for details.

In addition, individuals under the age of 18 may not be employed more than nine hours in any ten-hour period, more than forty-eight hours in a week, or more than six consecutive days. They may work only between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m., and must be allowed at least thirty minutes for any meal period.

Before employing a minor, departments must request a safety review by the Environment Health and Safety Office to ensure that the employment conforms to all applicable Institute safety policies. After approval from the Environment, Health and Safety Office, departments must complete applicable Human Resources forms to hire the minor. Departments should indicate that the EHS review has been completed and approved. Information regarding the employment of MIT students may be obtained from Student Financial Services. (See Section 1.9, Employment of MIT Students.)