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Welcome to The Mount Sinai
Department of Volunteer Services

 

Message from our Director:

Out of an abundance of concern for our patients, staff, visitors, and you, Mount Sinai Health System has suspended the processing of new volunteer applicants until further notice. If you are looking for ways to help, please check back later as we may have need for a volunteer pool.  Monetary donations can be made online to the special Mount Sinai COVID-19 fund by clicking here.

Volunteers always have been at the heart of Mount Sinai's mission, so we thank you for your understanding during this challenging time.  Please take good care of yourself and those you love - and have a look at these Mount Sinai resources that hopefully will help you through.

With well wishes,
Shari Kaplan

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I become a Mount Sinai volunteer?

We encourage you to explore the numerous volunteer opportunities on our website.  Once you have identified the program(s) you are interested in volunteering for, please complete and submit an online application. Please note:  Many of our programs have limited openings, so we cannot assure a placement for everyone who expresses interest. We thank you in advance for taking the time to best express your interest in volunteering and what motivates you at this time in your life, and will notify you within three weeks whether you can proceed with the application process.

If you are interested in The Mount Sinai Research Volunteer Program, due to program limitations, we are only able to accept applications from people who already have assignments with a Principal Investigator (PI) at this time.  If you have not already secured a placement in a laboratory or as part of a clinical research team, then we are unable to process your application. 

Is there a time commitment to volunteer at Mount Sinai?

While programs vary, Mount Sinai volunteers are typically asked to make a minimum six month commitment to volunteer for a minimum of 100 hours. Unfortunately, we cannot provide short-term volunteer assignments given the time and cost associated with volunteer clearance.

How long does the clearance process take?

The good news is that this answer mostly depends on you, and how quickly you're able to complete each step in the process. Generally speaking, we find that clearance can take about six weeks (particularly given the health requirements). Applicants who follow each step carefully can help expedite their own process. People who already have placements tend to be cleared more quickly as other programs have application cycles and require in-person interviews and training.

Is there a minimum age requirement?

Applicants need to be at least 15 years of age to volunteer, however, due to school schedules, there are a very limited number of hospital or research volunteer placements. If you already have been able to arrange your own placement, then this department will be able to help onboard you. Please check back for summer programming in February as a limited number of additional openings may become available.

What does medical clearance entail?

All Mount Sinai volunteers are required to be cleared by the Employee Health Services (EHS) to be sure applicants are in good health and up to date with immunizations including flu vaccine. In order to maintain confidentiality of your medical records, please share them directly with the EHS team and not with the volunteer office.

Volunteers are required to take a toxicology test through Quest Diagnostics, who will send the results directly to EHS. Urine toxicology includes screening for amphetamines (amphetamine, methamphetamine), barbiturates, benzodiazepines, cocaine metabolites, marijuana metabolites, opiates (morphine, codeine), opioids (hydromorphone, hydrocodone, oxycodone, oxymorphone) and phencyclidine. If you fail a toxicology test by testing positive for any substance for which you do not have a current prescription, then you are not cleared to volunteer at Mount Sinai and are disqualified from re-applying in the future.  Please note: marijuana may be legal for recreational use in some states or prescribed for medical reasons; it is still a substance that could disqualify applicants who test positive from volunteering at Mount Sinai.

For individuals who are going through the clearance process, please submit all completed health forms to VolunteerHealthForms@mountsinai.org.  

Can I volunteer if I am not a U.S. Citizen or Green Card holder?

If you are not a U.S. Citizen or Green Card holder, then we need you to first be cleared through the International Personnel department. You can begin the online application, but you will be directed to International Personnel to complete this step.

Do you have summer volunteer programs?

We are pleased to be able to welcome students from colleges and universities to volunteer with Mount Sinai over the summer. These placements are typically in Research or Patient Care, and require a more condensed time commitment (100 hours over 10-12 weeks). It is best to inquire in January regarding the Summer Research volunteer program, and in February regarding Patient Care Summer volunteer placements. Please check back when our summer volunteer programming information is posted online.

What is the application process for returning volunteers?

If you have volunteered for Mount Sinai in the past year (or ever before), then please indicate that on your application. Depending on how long you have been away, we possibly can waive some of your requirements. It's also good for volunteers to be able to keep one file - often over multiple years and with different assignments - for your records.