Work Study FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

I'm a first year student and I'm only working 2 hours in dining commons. May I work anywhere else?
Yes. Please review the JobX student employment page for other opportunities that interest you.

Will declining my work study affect my financial aid?
Work study is not applied to your tuition account and is not mandatory; it’s available to help you pay for your personal and book expenses.

Can I replace my work study with loan or grant?
If you have not reached the maximum eligibility for your Federal Direct Stafford Loan, you may replace work study with additional loan.  Your work study will not be replaced with grant.

Can I work more than my Maximum Earnings Limit (MEL) to help pay my family contribution?
The maximum amount that a student should work is 8-10 hours a week during the semester.  Note: January intersession earnings do not count toward the MEL.  You may contact Student Financial Services if you would like to discuss your earnings limit and possible options.

What if I go over my MEL?
If you exceed your MEL by more than $300 you will be asked to stop working.

I don’t have work study in my package – can I work?
Level 1 campus jobs are available only to work study recipients.  Students who do not have work study may apply for any non-level 1 position. All students should note that while we make every effort to assist students in securing on-campus employment, this opportunity is not guaranteed.  A maximum earnings limit applies to all students, whether they have work study eligibility or not. Currently this limit ranges from $2100 to $2400 and is based on a student's grade level. (The limit may be increased in future years based on state minimum wage increases and College policies.)

Do intersession/summer earnings apply to MEL?
The only positions for which intersession/summer earnings apply toward the MEL are Community Service and America Reads positions as these are federally funded programs.

My schedule allows me to work more in the fall than in the spring. Do I have to stop working when I reach the maximum amount of work study listed for the fall semester?
No, as long as you do not exceed your maximum earnings limit for the academic year.

I want to work with America Reads/Community service but I don’t have federal work study. Can this be switched?
Contact Student Financial Services to determine if federal work study is an option for you.

Does my SCA/CA stipend count toward my MEL?
Yes, stipends do count as earnings and will be monitored. Your contract with the housing office stipulates that you should not be working elsewhere, so you should verify with the housing office to clarify if there is any conflict with your working in another department.

Can I increase my workstudy to pay my international tax obligation?
If a student’s tax liability is greater than $250 a semester, the maximum earnings limit may be increased to accommodate the taxes. For those students with tax amounts below the $250/semester there is leeway with the maximum earnings limit, but the total earnings must not exceed the MEL plus $300. This tax will be due every semester and students should consider paying the expense with savings from summer/January intersession earnings. To inquire about increasing your MEL to manage the international tax, please email Student Financial Services.

More work study FAQs available on the Career Development Center website.