Federal Work Study: FAQ’s

What are the benefits of being a student worker?
Being a student worker allows you to gain work experience, go to school and earn money all in the same place. While you work as a student worker, your priority will always be school and you remain close to your campus so that you can better balance your work and school schedule.

What is Federal Work Study?
The Federal Work-Study Program provides jobs for undergraduate students with financial need, allowing them to earn money to help pay education expenses. The program encourages community service work and work related to each student’s course of study.

The FWS Program provides funds that are earned through part-time employment to assist students in financing the costs of post-secondary education. Students can receive FWS funds at approximately 3,400 participating post-secondary institutions. Institutional financial aid administrators at participating institutions have substantial flexibility in determining the amount of FWS awards to provide to students who are enrolled or accepted for enrollment. Hourly wages must not be less than the federal minimum wage.

What types of positions are available?
Positions vary from department clerical assistance to copy room attendant. Student assistance is needed in departments and locations such as: computer labs, library, Campus Management, Academic Advising, Student Financial Services and Admissions, just to name a few. Student worker positions are maintained in areas where Mercy College students are in need of assistance. This is a great way for students to meet and familiarize themselves with the rest of the Mercy College Community as well as assisting their peers.

What happens if I am not eligible for work-study?
All students interested in participating in the Federal Work Study Program need to have applied for financial aid and must have submitted a FAFSA application for the current school year. Students that are not eligible for work study, are welcome to fill out application along with resume. Positions are very limited and when a campus employment position opens up, priority for interview will be given to students who have an application on file and meet the requirements of the position.

Can International Students work through the Student Worker Program?
All international students are welcome to fill out application along with resume. International students will fall under the not eligible for work study category and will be notified if a position has opened for them to interview. Priority for interview will be given to students who have an application on file and have expressed an interest in a position.

How much does a student worker get paid?
Students employed in Westchester are paid at the current state minimum wage of $13 an hour.  Students working in the Bronx or Manhattan are paid at the current minimum wage $15. All students can be evaluated and be given a raise accordingly.

Can I work during the summer and semester breaks?

So I got the job, how do I get paid?
Students will be paid on a bi-weekly basis. The current school year pay schedule will be provided on the Student Worker Program Forms page.

Can I work as many hours as I want?
All students can decide before they begin to interview how many hours they can work for the upcoming semester. A maximum of 17 hours per week is the most a student can be scheduled for a week. Once classes are in session, students will have to honor their schedules but with notice to supervisors, can adjust hours on weeks of heavy school workload such as mid-terms and finals. The amount you earn can’t exceed your total Federal Work-Study award. When assigning work hours, your supervisors or Student Worker Program Coordinator, will consider your class schedule and your academic progress.

Who tracks my Federal Work-Study Funds?
If you’re a Federal Work Study student worker, it is important for you to keep track of your funds. However, the Student Work Office will notify your supervisor when your funds are running low. Supervisors will inform students of what options are available once a student goes through their awarded work-study funds.

Are Federal Work-Study jobs on campus or off campus?
Both. Most jobs are available on campus at any of the Mercy College campus locations. If you are interested in work off campus, you will be placed with a private nonprofit organization or a public agency, and the work performed must be in the public interest. Positions off campus need to be set up before students begin to interview.

What happens when my Work-Study money is finished?
When your work-study funds have run out, your department has the option to keep you working. For a student worker to continue working as a student worker, the head of the department must have the ability to keep the student through department fund. In that case, a change of status form needs to be submitted, which should be completed by your FWS Supervisor.