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Internship & Job Search Ethics from Bucknell Career

Is it okay to change your mind about a job or internship? Yes, but not if you have already accepted the offer! Bucknell’s Interviewing program is a formal program with guidelines that students must follow in order to remain eligible. These guidelines reflect interview and job search etiquette students need to know and agree to when they use Handshake. They also help Bucknell maintain positive relationships with employers so they will continue to participate in our career fairs, interviewing program and other efforts as well as (big thing here!) continue to seek to hire other Bucknell students in the future.

So, here’s what you need to know about reneging an offer:

When you accept a job or internship offer from an employer, either verbally or in writing, that is considered an agreement between both parties. Reneging a job or internship is highly unethical in all employment industries and is considered a breach of contract, which negatively impacts Bucknell’s relationship with the employer as well as your own professional reputation and that of your peers.

If an employer reports that a candidate has reneged on an offer, the candidate will be subject to immediate dismissal from Handshake.

Do NOT accept an offer if you intend to continue interviewing! When you receive an offer and are not ready to accept we can help – make an appointment with one of our career counselors to review your options and devise a plan.

Reneging offers is a serious matter and we’d like to share some perspective from our national association – the National Association of Colleges and Employers – on the topic as well: 


Truth: Some employers keep a running list of names of students who renege after they’ve accepted a job offer—a “do not call” list. Even without a list, recruiters will remember you.

If you are offered a job, it’s because you stand out in the crowd of applicants. The recruiter and hiring manager see and hear your name over and over during the interview and hiring process—in e-mails, on your resume, and in discussions with other employees.

Someday, you may want a job at Corporation A. Or, you may run into the same recruiter at a different organization where you want to work. Plus, recruiters talk to each other about students who back out on a job acceptance.

And, even if you seem to have a good reason for reneging on the acceptance—“personal reasons” or “to travel abroad”—your profile on LinkedIn will show that you’ve lied when you list the job you take.

Kayla Villwock is the Intern Program Manager for SAS.

Courtesy of the National Association of Colleges and Employers.

Failure to follow these guidelines and conduct your search ethically may result in your suspension from using Handshake and/or access to Alumni Career Services when you need help finding your next job.

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