Work Study Frequently Asked Questions

The FAQs below provide an overview of common questions about the work study program at Willamette University.

Since Federal Work Study and Financial Aid policies change somewhat each year, please contact the Financial Aid office for the definitive answers to your questions.

  1. What is work study?
  2. How do I know if I have work study funds?
  3. If I was given work study funds does that mean I automatically have/get a job?
  4. Can I apply for non-work study jobs?
  5. How do I find an on-campus job?
  6. Can I get a job off-campus with work study?
  7. What do I need to submit to be hired?
  8. When should I start looking for campus jobs?
  9. Is there a list of jobs for students who have work study?
  10. Can I work more than one job if I have work study?
  11. Do I have to keep track of my Federal work study funds?
  12. What if I run out of Federal work study funds before the school year is out?
  13. If I don't use the Federal funds do they carry over to next semester or next year?
  14. How many hours am I allowed to work?
  15. What are the wages for a work study position?
  16. Can I get a job on campus if I don’t have work study?
  17. Do I need a resume to get a work study job?
  18. If I’m an International student can I get work study jobs?

1. What is work study?

There are two kinds of “work study” at Willamette University. One is a Federal Financial Aid program to promote part-time employment. It is part of your financial aid package. The second type is the Willamette work study program that provides on-campus employers money to hire any student to work in their organization and is not part of the Federal Work Study program. On Willamette’s campus anyone can apply for any student job whether or not they have “work study” as part of their financial package.


2. How do I know if I have work study funds?

You will have received a Financial Aid Award Notice for the current academic year reflecting a Federal Work-Study award. Follow this tutorial on how to view your Financial Aid award statement.


3. If I was given work study funds does that mean I automatically have/get a job?

No. It is your responsibility to seek out and acquire a position. Most jobs will be listed on the Career Services online job board, Handshake.


4. Can I apply for non-work study jobs?

Yes. In fact, Willamette is different than most campuses. Anyone can apply for almost any on-campus job whether or not they have Federal Work Study. Sometimes employers announce that their job is a “work-study” position because that is what those jobs were called in the past. But there is really no difference for most on-campus jobs. Almost everyone will accept work study and non-work study applicants.


5. How do I find an on-campus job?

Start with Handshake. Also contact individual departments. Not all employers post their positions at the same time, so check Handshake regularly – it's updated daily.

  1. Most campus departments hire students, so you can directly contact offices you are interested in. Ask if they have any student jobs open now or in the future.
  2. Ask other students where they work: roommates, team members, club members, etc. See if they might give you some suggestions. Following up on referrals is one of the best ways to get campus jobs.
  3. Surf the Willamette University web pages for contacts. There are jobs in most offices, departments, buildings, food service, library, recreation, etc. Almost anywhere you see full-time faculty or staff, there are student workers that help them in their department.


6. Can I get a job off-campus with work study?

Yes, Willamette partners with a few local schools to provide paid positions as reading tutors to elementary and middle school aged students. These programs require federal-work study eligibility. See Handshake for available positions.


7. What do I need to submit to be hired?

Most employers will require a resume, a job application, and everyone needs original identification

  1. For resume writing. Develop a resume using the guidelines provided on our Resume and Cover Letter page. Once you have a draft, you can have your resume reviewed by the Career Development staff via email <career-development> or schedule an appointment through Handshake.
  2. For job applications, ask the employer for their application form. Many employers use their own form, but here is a standard application form that many offices use.
  3. In order to get any job you will be required to bring ORIGINAL documentation such as an I-9 form, W-4 Federal/State Withholding form, and Passport OR Driver’s License or other government issued photo ID AND Social Security Card OR Birth Certificate. See “Forms” on the Payroll site.


8. When should I start looking for campus jobs?

Yesterday! Students should begin looking for jobs as soon as possible. Many students apply for jobs online before school even starts, so you need to start sooner rather than later. It can take several days to contact employers, follow-up with a resume, schedule an interview, and hear the results, so it’s better to be the early bird. You should apply to multiple jobs simultaneously.


9. Is there a list of jobs for students who have work study?

No. Employment opportunities will be posted on Handshake, and there are often positions highlighted in the Career Development weekly newsletter, "Career Talk." 


10. Can I work more than one job if I have work study?

Yes.


11. Do I have to keep track of my Federal work study funds?

Yes. Your Federal work study funds balance will be automatically reflected on your time sheet each month. If it appears that you will fall short of funds you need to contact the Financial Aid office. Non-Federal work study funds are balanced by your supervisor. If you don’t have Federal Work Study funds, your supervisor will monitor how much they have in their budget and will employ you based on the number of hours you work, how much you are paid, and how much money they have in their budget


12. What if I run out of Federal work study funds before the school year is out?

For Federal Work Study, if a student reaches the earnings limit (you will be notified when you reach 75% of your award) you should contact the Financial Aid Office for a review of the aid package. Non-Federal work study funds are managed by your supervisor


13. If I don't use the Federal funds do they carry over to next semester or next year?

Yes and no. Federal Work study depends on your financial aid package, which is reviewed and revised annually. Generally, if your package stays about the same, Federal work study will stay about the same, but there is no negative impact if you don’t use the funds in an academic year. Federal work-study funds awarded in the Fall will carry forward to the Spring semester of the same academic year.

At Willamette University Federal work study awards cover the academic year August – May. If you want Summer Federal Work Study, you need to contact the Financial Aid office during the Spring Semester.

You cannot carry forward unused work study funds from one academic year to the next. You are re-packaged each academic year.


14. How many hours am I allowed to work?

There are no restrictions on the number of hours you can work using Federal Work Study funds. Generally, students work 5 to 10 hours each week. You may not work more than 20 hours a week while classes are in session or more than 40 hours a week during vacation times. Willamette’s policy is 20 hours during class and 40 hours during breaks.


15. What are the wages for a work study position?

Students will be paid at least the current minimum wage for Oregon. Guidelines and recommendations are given to employers each year. Students may receive increases each year that they return to a particular department. For more information see the Payroll website.


16. Can I get a job on campus if I don’t have work study?

Yes. While a handful of campus jobs are limited to students who qualify for Federal WorkStudy, most campus employers hire students using Willamette University student employment funds, which are not related to the Federal Work Study program. All Willamette students are eligible to earn these student employment funds. Availability of jobs is dependent upon individual department budgets.


17. Do I need a resume to get a work study job?

Yes, most on and off campus employers will require a resume. Use the handy tools provided by the Career Development to create a Willamette approved resume. Follow the guidelines in the Resume and Cover letter page.


18. If I’m an International student can I get work study jobs?

No and yes.

No, you cannot receive United States Federal Work Study.

Yes, you can get “Willamette University Work Study.” WU work study is just a different way of saying “student worker.” U.S. immigration allows any type of campus work as long as it is paid through Willamette University and doesn't exceed the hourly limit. International students can work on campus up to 20 hours per week maximum, and up to 40 hours per week when classes are not in session (Spring, Winter or Summer breaks). A student who works more than that would be out of status. Your wages will be paid out of the department’s student wage line, not Federal Work Study. Once a student's program ends or they graduate, they lose the ability to work on campus.

Willamette University

Career Development

Address
UC 3rd floor
Willamette University
900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.
Phone
503-370-6413

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