(a) For the purpose of this section, “student” means an individual who is enrolled, not less than half-time, in a high school, trade school, technical or vocational institute, junior college, college, university, or comparable recognized educational institution. An individual who is a student is deemed not to have ceased to be a student during an interim between school years if the interim is not more than 5 months and if such individual shows to the satisfaction of the Office of Personnel Management that the individual has a bona fide intention of continuing to pursue a course of study or training in the same or different educational institution during the school semester (or other period into which the school year is divided) immediately after the interim.
(b) Notwithstanding section 1342 of title 31, the head of an agency may accept, subject to regulations issued by the Office, voluntary service for the United States if the service—
(1) is performed by a student, with the permission of the institution at which the student is enrolled, as part of an agency program established for the purpose of providing educational experiences for the student;
(2) is to be uncompensated; and
(3) will not be used to displace any employee.
(c)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), any student who provides voluntary service under subsection (b) of this section shall not be considered a Federal employee for any purpose other than for purposes of chapter 81 of this title (relating to compensation for injury) and sections 2671 through 2680 of title 28 (relating to tort claims).
(2) In addition to being considered a Federal employee for the purposes specified in paragraph (1), any student who provides voluntary service as part of a program established under subsection (b) of this section in the Internal Revenue Service, Department of the Treasury, shall be considered an employee of the Department of the Treasury for purposes of—
(A) section 552a of this title (relating to disclosure of records);
(B) subsections (a)(1), (h)(1), (k)(6), and (l)(4) of section 6103 of title 26 (relating to confidentiality and disclosure of returns and return information);
(C) sections 7213(a)(1) and 7431 of title 26 (relating to unauthorized disclosures of returns and return information by Federal employees and other persons); and
(D) section 7423 of title 26 (relating to suits against employees of the United States);
except that returns and return information (as defined in section 6103(b) of title 26) shall be made available to students under such program only to the extent that the Secretary of the Treasury or his designee determines that the duties assigned to such students so require.
(Added Pub. L. 95–454, title III, §301(a), Oct. 13, 1978, 92 Stat. 1144; amended Pub. L. 97–258, §3(a)(5), Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 1063; Pub. L. 97–437, Jan. 8, 1983, 96 Stat. 2285.)
1983—Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 97–437, §1(1), substituted “(c)(1) Except as provided in par. (2), any” for “(c) Any”.
Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 97–437, §1(2), added par. (2).
1982—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 97–258 substituted “section 1342 of title 31” for “section 3679(b) of the Revised Statutes (31 U.S.C. 665(b))”.
Section effective 90 days after Oct. 13, 1978, see section 907 of Pub. L. 95–454, set out as an Effective Date of 1978 Amendment note under section 1101 of this title.