Work Study FAQ

Students have a lot of questions about Federal Work Study. Below, we have a few of the frequently asked questions. 

I applied for Financial Aid using FAFSA and I didn't get Work Study. Why?

The funding for Work Study goes very fast, so apply early in January for the following academic year. Awards are need-based and are made to students who marked on the FAFSA that they are interested in work study. To the best extent possible, awards are made on a first-come, first-serve basis. 

What if someone does not use their Work Study award? Can it be given to someone else? 

Awards are made with the understanding that some students may not attend or accept their awards, so even if some students do not use their awards, funds may not be available to re-award

I have been awarded Work Study. When will I receive information to find my job?

You will receive an email to your FSU email account with information on how to find a job. The email will not go out until you accept your award and complete all required financial aid verification requests (see your To Do List)

I received a Work Study award and I DO NOT want it. What should I do?

You should decline the award through the my.fsu.edu financial aid award screen, or contact the Financial Aid Office. If you cancel your work study online your award is cancelled for both Fall AND Spring. If you need to cancel Fall but want to work the Spring term, please contact our office.

Are there advantages to participating in Work Study?

YES! Work Study jobs offer more flexible schedules than most off-campus jobs, putting your education first. Also, the dollars you earn to help meet your college expenses will not be counted as income for your financial aid eligibility determination next year. You will get on-the-job experience that will give you an edge in the job market after graduation. Also, working with accomplished professionals in your field of choice will provide you with valuable references for the future.

How do I view Job Listings?

  1. Make sure you have accepted your FWS award (View your award and make sure that the Accept amount is equal to the Offer amount)
  2. If your financial aid is complete (no other documents outstanding on your "To Do" list) then you should receive an email with job search information with the subject: "Financial Aid Federal Work Study"
  3. Log into your my.fsu.edu account (you must be logged in to view the job listings)
  4. Review the information in this email, and click on the job listing link
  5. You should see this heading:

  6. Review the jobs listed and apply to those you are most interested in. You can and should apply for more than one job.
    1. Attach a copy of your work study authorization form to each online application
    2. If you have a resume (recommended but optional), attach that as well to the online application
    3. Keep a list of the job listings that you have applied to (job number, title, and date that you applied)
    4. If you do not hear from the department in 7-14 days, please contact our office and we will assist you in finding a position

The job listing link did not work. What should I do?

  1. If you are on a mobile browser - go to a computer instead
  2. If you are on a computer - clear cache and try the link below
    • Cache is a way a computer browser "remembers" a page you have visited and saves certain structural information to speed things up the next time you visit.
    • If you are on a Windows computer, you can clear your cache by pressing CTRL+SHIFT+DEL all at the same time. That should bring up a menu to allow you to clear cache for a specified amount of time. It is not necessary to clear history or logins (that is up to you)
  3. If the link still does not work, see here for further instructions

If you continue to experience issues - please contact the work study staff at FA-FWS@fsu.edu

What types of on-campus jobs are available under Work Study?

Anything from clerical work to computer programming. Some jobs are "pre-professional" in nature - good experience for learning the basics of a career. Some are related to recreational pursuits, some related to business, science, or other career fields.

Are all jobs on campus?

No, there are off-campus community service jobs with non-profit or governmental agencies , i.e. Southern Scholarship Foundation, Tallahassee Parks and Recreation, Tallahassee Urban League. Students interested in off-campus community service placements should contact the Office of Financial Aid at 644-6346 for more information.

Can I work two Work Study jobs?

No, students can only work one Work Study job.

Can I work an OPS job and a Work Study job?

Yes, but the combined hours cannot exceed 39 hours in one work week (Friday - Thursday).

How many hours can I work?

Work hours are arranged between you and your employer. Usually it takes 10 - 12 hours a week to earn your award amount for a semester. You should not work over 20 hours per week and you cannot work over your award amount, which is your work study earnings limit.

How can I calculate my Work Study earnings?

You can use the following spreadsheet to keep track of the number of hours you have worked and your resulting earnings: FWS Tracking Hours Earned Worksheet

How will I receive a check and what are the Work Study hourly salaries?

You will receive a biweekly paycheck by Direct Deposit into your checking account. The salary range for Work Study positions is generally $8.46 - $10.50 per hour; each job falls within a certain salary range. You and your employer should agree on an hourly rate depending on your skills and job responsibilities. Higher rates will be considered for jobs requiring advanced degrees and/or skills. On Campus - Your employer will show you how to set-up your direct deposit of your paycheck and submit your biweekly work hours in the FSU OMNI payroll system to get paid. Community Service - You will need to set up direct deposit with the Federal Work Study office.

How much will I earn on each paycheck?

Your pay will be based on the numbers you work (and report) each payperiod, multiplied by the hourly rate.

 Is Work Study money taxable?

Yes, it is taxable income and you will receive a W-2 at the end of the year to file your taxes. Your W-2 will be available on the OMNI system for you to print in January.

Should I show Work Study earnings on my Financial Aid Application for the following year?

If you filed a tax return for the year requested and it included work study earnings, report the tax information exactly as it is on your tax form, or use the Data Retrieval Tool to allow the IRS to transfer information to the FAFSA. You should then note any work study earnings in the question on Students Additional Financial Information (this allows it to be deducted from the calculation of your contribution for the year). Be sure to only report earnings for that tax year (i.e. if you are reporting for tax year 2017 – report earnings from January 2017-December 2017).

Is a Work Study job hard to get?

No. If you have trouble locating a job after reviewing the online job listing, contact the Office of Financial Aid and we will assist you in finding an open position.

If there is a department with a Work Study position that will hire me, but I don't have Work Study. What can I do?

You can check with the Office of Financial Aid to see if you are eligible for work study and if funds are available, we may be able to update your award. If you are not eligible, or if no additional funding is available, you can ask the department if they can hire you through different funding. Non-work study part-time job listings at FSU can be found at FSU http://jobs.fsu.edu.

Are there weekend and evening jobs with the Work Study?

Yes. Check the job listing or contact the Federal Work Study office for more information.

Do I need to apply for Work Study every year in order to receive it?

Yes, you must apply for Financial Aid every year by completing the FAFSA - apply as soon as the application becomes available (October 1).

Can you use Work Study money to pay tuition?

No. Funds are not awarded in advance. You must work to earn the award and you won't receive your first paycheck until after the deadline for paying tuition.

I did not earn all of my Fall Work Study award. Can I transfer the remainder to Spring?

You should plan on earning your awarded funds within the term that they are awarded, but if you do have some leftover, check with the Work study office to see if it can be carried over to the Spring.

Do you have Work Study in the Summer?

Work Study is generally not available in the Summer. Check with the Office of Financial Aid in April to see if Work Study is available for the Summer term.

If I have questions on Work Study, who can I contact?

You can email our office at FA-FWS@fsu.edu or call Jennifer Hall at (850) 644-6346 or Jean Mills (850) 644-4480.

Last updated 7/22/2019
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