Work-study is a need-based federal financial aid program that provides undergraduate and graduate students with the opportunity to work a part-time job, allowing them to earn money to help pay educational expenses. The program encourages community service work and work related to the student’s course of study.

Work-Study Policies and Procedures

Overview of Federal Work-Study Program

Work-study is a need-based federal financial aid program that provides undergraduate and graduate students with the opportunity to work a part-time job, allowing them to earn money to help pay educational expenses. The program encourages community service work and work related to the student’s course of study.

Funding

A portion of work-study is federally funded through the U.S. Department of Education. Federal funding covers up to 75% of a student’s pay. The employer is responsible for the remaining 25% of a student’s pay. Eligible students are typically offered up to $4,800 in total work-study funds that can be earned over the fall and spring semesters of an academic year. Additional summer funding may be available upon request.

Pay

Students must receive at least minimum wage ($7.25 per hour) and can earn up to $14 per hour as determined by the employer. Work-study students can work an average of 16 hours per week.

Student eligibility

To be considered for work-study funding, students must submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and indicate they are interested in participating in work-study on the FAFSA. UAB’s priority financial aid deadline is December 1 each year. Funds are offered on an annual basis and students must submit a new FAFSA each year for consideration. Work-study funds are offered to students with unmet need on a funds-available basis. Students can also request to be placed on the work-study waitlist. To receive work-study funds, students must be enrolled at least half-time (6+ hours for undergraduate students and 5+ hours for graduate students) in a degree-seeking program and meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).

Employer Procedures

Advertising a Work-Study Position

Work-Study Request Form: Employers must submit a Work-Study Request Form to the Office of Student Financial Aid. The form includes departmental information, job title, and description of duties.

Handshake: Handshake is UAB’s online recruiting system that allows students access to search and apply for positions, including work-study jobs. To advertise an open work-study job, employers should post the position in Handshake.

  • If a department does not have a Handshake employer account, one can be created at https://uab.joinhandshake.com/employer_registrations/new. On-campus employers should include “UAB” in front of their department name.
  • Posting a job – Log into your Handshake account. Select Jobs > Create Job and indicate that the position is a work-study job. Employers can indicate what documents are required to apply and if/how students are interviewed.
    • All students can view work-study positions. Employers are encouraged to indicate in the job title and description that the position is only open to students who have a work-study offer.
  • Employers should request a copy of a student’s work-study offer prior to interviewing or hiring a student.
  • Once an employer has selected a student(s) to fill the position, they should contact the new hire by phone or email. Employers should mark selected students as hired and decline any students they have not selected within Handshake. Finally, employers should expire the work-study job posting in Handshake.

Hiring a student

  • ACT Document: The hiring department will submit an ACT document through Oracle for each work-study student. A copy of the ACT document should be sent to the Financial Aid Office for review.
    • Document Reason:
      • New Hire –students who have not previously held an employee position at UAB
      • Transfer – work-study students who are transferring from another department or from an 06-Student Assistant to an 11-Federal Work Study position
      • Rehire – students who have been previously employed at UAB but do not have an active assignment
      • Additional Assignment – students with an existing student position who would like to add a work-study assignment – Students can only have one active work-study assignment at any given time.
    • Effective Date: The effective date must match the hire date listed on the Work-Study Placement Form. If the student is transferring from another department or from a 06-Student Assistant to an 11-Federal Work Study position, the effective date must be the first day of a pay-period.
    • Assignment Category: 11 Federal Work Study
  • Placement Form: A Work-Study Placement Form must be completed and submitted to the Student Financial Aid Office for each student.
  • The Student Financial Aid Office will review and approve hires upon receipt of all documentation, including a copy of the ACT Document and a Work-Study Placement Form.
  • Students are not permitted to work until all hiring paperwork has been processed and approved through the Student Financial Aid Office and UAB HR.

Terminating a student

  • End of assignment: If a student is ending their primary assignment with an employer for any reason but has another active assignment, the employer will submit an ACT End of Assignment Document through Oracle. If a student is ending their work-study job and does not have an additional active assignment, the employer will submit an ACT Termination Document through Oracle.
  • Exhausted funding & not returning: If a student has exhausted their work-study funding and will not be returning to the work-study position in a future term, the employer will submit an ACT Termination or End of Assignment Document through Oracle.
  • Dismissal: If a student is being dismissed from their work-study position for performance-related issues, the employer will submit an ACT Termination or End of Assignment Document through Oracle and should notify the Student Financial Aid Office of the dismissal.

KRONOS Timekeeping and Pay Periods

  • If a student has multiple job assignments, the work-study position should be listed as their primary assignment.
  • Students should clock in and out through KRONOS for their work-study positions on a designated computer in the employer’s office. Study breaks and lunch breaks are not considered working time. KRONOS can be accessed at www.uab.edu/adminsys.
  • Students should not work more than eight hours in one day. Students should not exceed thirty-seven total hours of work per week. Work in any other student job assignments is included in the weekly total.
  • Students should verify their hours in KRONOS at the end of each pay period and notify their supervisor in writing of any timekeeping errors or adjustments that need to be made.
  • Employers should approve work-study students’ timecards in KRONOS on the Monday immediately following the end of a pay period. KRONOS time will feed into the student’s TEL document automatically. Additional KRONOS Time Keeping Resources can be found here.
  • If a student’s work-study position is not their primary assignment, the employer must manually enter the student’s work-study hours in TEL each pay period.
  • The Work-Study Program follows the same payroll schedule as the University.
    • Students can begin earning work-study funds in the first full pay period that occurs in the fall semester.
    • The final full pay period that occurs in the spring semester (for fall/spring work-study students) or the summer semester (for students with summer work-study funds) is the last pay period a work-study student can earn work-study funds.
    • Students may work over the breaks between the fall and spring semester or spring and summer semester if they are enrolled at least half-time in both respective semesters and have remaining work-study funds. Work study funds are not available to students in the break between the summer and fall terms.
  • Direct Deposit: Work-study students will receive a bi-weekly paycheck for their hours worked. Pay is direct deposited to the student’s bank account on the Friday following the close of a pay period. Students can set up and manage their direct deposit through the Self-Service Applications in Oracle. To access, visit www.uab.edu/adminsys > Oracle HR & Finance > UAB Self Service Applications > Manage Direct Deposit Account.

Employer Responsibilities

  • A supervisor or designated full-time staff member should be present and available any time a student is working.
  • Ensure a student’s work hours are clocked in KRONOS or submitted in TEL each pay period. Employers should approve a student’s timesheet each pay period.
  • Supervisors should monitor a student’s work-study balance to avoid any overages. After a student has exhausted their allotted work-study funding, any additional work and pay will be the sole responsibility of the employer.
  • Review a student’s class schedule each semester to determine appropriate work hours. Students must be enrolled at least half-time each semester (6+ hours for undergraduate students and 5+ hours for graduate students) to be eligible for work-study. Students are not permitted to work during scheduled class time.
  • Communicate job duties and work expectations in a clear and timely manner to the student employee.
  • Provide adequate training to assist the student employee with the performance of duties and personal growth.
  • Provide the student employee with departmental policies including, but not limited to, dress codes, appropriate conduct, and consequences for failure to adhere to policies.
  • Students who access confidential information should comply with FERPA and HIPAA standards. Employers should ensure students have completed FERPA/HIPAA training and signed a confidentiality agreement when necessary.
  • Promote open communication with student employee to foster mutual understanding.
  • Encourage student employee input, suggestions, and involvement.
  • Complete a performance evaluation on each student employee at least once a year, providing the student with a copy.
  • Adhere to the provisions outlined in the UAB Employee Handbook.

Additional Guidelines for Off-Campus Partners

In addition to the above procedures, off-campus partners should:

  • Have a signed contract on file.
  • Have an updated Organizational Description on file.
  • Complete hiring paperwork for students with the UAB Student Financial Aid Office.
    • Students can obtain a referral form from the Student Financial Aid Office.
    • Students will take the form to their off-campus employer for supervisor signatures.
    • Students should return the signed form to the Student Financial Aid Office at least one week prior to their anticipated start date.
    • The Student Financial Aid Office will communicate with the student and employer once all hiring documents have been processed and approved and the student is active in the system. Students are not permitted to work until they have received notification.
  • Have a KRONOS Acknowledgement Form on file.
  • Submit a copy of the signed KRONOS timesheet to the Student Financial Aid Office by 9:30am on the Monday immediately following the end of a pay period. Timesheets must be submitted directly from the employer by email, fax, or in a sealed envelope.

Student Hiring Procedures

  • Submit a FAFSA each year to be considered for work-study funding.
  • Students with a work-study offer can view work-study job openings on Handshake.
  • Apply for work-study positions in Handshake.
  • Provide work-study offer notification to prospective employer at the time of application or interview. Students can view and print their work-study offer notifications on the “My Financial Aid” tab in BlazerNet.
  • Complete any new-hire paperwork as specified by your employer. All new-hire documentation must be processed and approved prior to a student working.
  • Set up and manage direct deposit through the Self-Service Applications in Oracle. To access, visit www.uab.edu/adminsys > Oracle HR & Finance > UAB Self Service Applications > Manage Direct Deposit Account.

Student Responsibilities

  • Be punctual, dependable, and demonstrate a good attitude toward your job.
  • Provide your supervisor with a class schedule to determine appropriate work hours. Students must be enrolled at least half-time each semester (6+ hours for undergraduate students and 5+ hours for graduate students) to be eligible for work-study. Students are not permitted to work during scheduled class time.
  • Students must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress to be eligible for federal financial aid, including work-study funding.
  • Familiarize yourself with office policies and protocol including, but not limited to, dress codes, appropriate conduct, and consequences for failure to adhere to policies.
  • Clock in and out of KRONOS each shift. Students should only clock in for working time. Students should not record any working time for lunch or study breaks.
  • Students should submit any KRONOS errors or time corrections to their supervisor daily.
  • Students should not work more than eight hours in one day. Students should not exceed thirty-seven total hours of work per week. Work in any other student job assignments is included in the weekly total.
  • Students who access confidential information should comply with FERPA and HIPAA standards. Students should complete FERPA/HIPAA training and sign a confidentiality agreement when necessary.
  • Requests for time-off should be submitted in a timely manner as indicated by the employer. In case of illness or emergency, students should notify the employer promptly.
  • Students should notify their employers at least two weeks prior to leaving a work-study position.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can students work during breaks?

  • Students are permitted to work during breaks that fall during the regular semester (ie – Thanksgiving break, Labor Day, Spring Break)
  • Students may work during the breaks between fall and spring semester and spring and summer semester if they are enrolled at least half-time and eligible for work-study funds in both respective semesters.
  • Work-study students are not permitted to work during the break between the summer and fall semesters.

Do unused work-study funds carry over to future semesters?

  • Unused work-study funds will carry over to future semesters within the same academic year. Any unused work-study funds remaining on a student’s account at the end of the spring semester (if the student is not enrolled at least half-time in the summer) or summer semester will be forfeited.

Can a student continue working once they have exhausted their work-study funds for the year?

  • At the discretion of their employer, students may continue working in a position after they have exhausted their funds. Employers will be responsible for 100% of a student’s pay after their work-study funds are exhausted. Additional work should be manually entered into TEL as non-work-study hours.

Can an employer hire a student if they do not have a work-study offer?

  • Employers are encouraged to verify a student’s work study offer at the time of application or interview. Students without a work-study offer will not be approved for work by the Student Financial Aid Office. Students can request to be placed on the work-study wait list for funds.

When can new hires begin working?

  • Students can begin working once all of their hiring paperwork has been submitted and approved through the Student Financial Aid Office and UAB HR. If a student is transferring from another department or moving from a 06-Student Worker position to an 11-Federal Work-Study position, the hire date must be the first day of a pay period.

If a student is returning in a future semester, should their assignment be terminated or can they remain active?

  • If a student is returning for a future semester (ie – after summer break), the employer does not have to end or terminate their assignment. Students can remain active and return to work when appropriate.

Can students hold multiple work-study positions?

  • Students can only have one active work-study assignment at any given time. Students can hold additional positions that are 06-Student Assistant positions.

Can a work-study student receive a raise?

  • Work-study students can receive a raise at the employer’s discretion based on job performance, experience, or expanded duties. To process the adjustment, employers should submit a salary schedule adjustment document through Oracle. The effective date of such changes should be the first day of a pay period.