What is Federal Work Study?

The Federal Work-Study Program provides employment opportunities for students who have demonstrated financial need by filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Unlike other financial aid awards, work-study is paid to students in the form of a paycheck for hours worked. Students are paid from funds that the college receives from the U.S. Department of Education. The work-study award is part of the student’s financial aid package; therefore a student must reapply each year by completing a new FAFSA. There is no guarantee that a student will continue to receive a work-study award from one year to the next. Federal Work-Study funds are limited, so awards usually go to those applicants who complete the FAFSA early and demonstrate financial need.

It is important to know that a work-study award provides students with the potential to earn funds and is not a guarantee that the student will earn the entire amount awarded. Students must accept the award, find a job, and work hours to earn the award.

Work-study is a great opportunity to earn real, on-the-job training and is a way to obtain important pre-graduation work experience. Students should expect to treat work-study jobs as professional positions where they can develop skills, network in their fields, and build solid references for future employment. Work-study employees are vital to the University’s daily operations and are a valued part of our workforce.

We've included some of our Frequently Asked Questions on this page for more information about how work-study works.