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Federal Work Study Employment Policy

Federal Work Study Employment Policy

Reviewed By: Administrative Council on
Reviewed By: Administrative Council on
Approved By: President Karnig on
Reviewed By: Administrative Council on
Approved By: President Karnig on

For Interpretation of this policy, Please Contact : Financial Aid, 909/537-5227

The purpose of this document is to set forth appropriate standards for Work Study student employment which are consistent with the mission of the university and Federal Work Study regulations and guidelines.   For purposes of this document, the term 'Work Study student' is to be interpreted as any student who has been awarded Federal Work Study funds in their official Financial Aid Award Notification.


A student must be awarded Federal Work Study funds as part of their official Financial Aid and Scholarships Notification to qualify for Work Study employment.  Exclusive of summer session, the student must be enrolled or accepted for enrollment during the term in which he/she will be employed and maintain enrollment status of half-time or greater and be pursuing a degree or certificate objective.
Graduate students in a master's program offered by the university must be in a continuous enrollment program. All students must maintain satisfactory academic progress as defined by the Financial Aid Office in order to continue Work Study employment.
It is the responsibility of the employing department to verify that the student maintains minimum unit enrollment to retain eligibility for Work Study employment.
The following student classifications are ineligible to participate in the Federal Work Study program:  Students enrolled through the College of Extended and Global Education (CEGE) and Open University, International and undocumented students.


The Work Study student period of eligibility may not exceed the award period.  Generally, this means the academic year beginning after July 1 and ending June 30, unless the student is enrolled for less than the entire year.  The period of eligibility ends when one of the following occurs:

  1. the student earns the authorized Work Study amount designated on the official Financial Aid Award Notification;
  2. the award period ends; or
  3. the student fails to meet all other eligibility criteria for financial aid, e.g., enrollment status, satisfactory academic progress, financial need, etc.
  4. Program funding has exhausted

Work-Study employment opportunities offer a variety of positions both on and off-campus.  Work-Study jobs include:  student assistant, library assistant, lab assistant, athletic assistant, child care provider, research assistant, peer health educator, peer counselor, instructional student assistant, etc.
Work-Study positions are available through the Career Center’s website for eligible Work-Study students at:  All Work-Study positions are subject to approval by the Human Resources.
A student may not earn more Work Study than the amount authorized by the Financial Aid Office.  It is the responsibility of the employing agency to monitor and cease Work Study employment when the student reaches the authorized amount.  A student who works beyond the authorized amount will not be paid from Work Study funds, but rather from the employing department's/agency's own funds. Hiring departments are required to provide an alternate chartfield string account that authorizes the Financial Aid and Scholarships Office to complete a transfer of expenditures in the event of an overaward.
Students will need to present proof of eligibility to work as described by the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1986 at the time of placement. Acceptable forms of ID are:

  1. A current driver's license (and extension if applicable), or a state issued ID card and
  2. An unlaminated original social security card. (NOTE: A social security card will not be accepted if card includes the statement 'not valid for employment.')

Generally, Federal Work Study students may not work more than 20 hours per week when classes are in session, or 40 hours when classes are not in session if funding is available.  It is permissible for a Work Study student to concurrently hold more than one job on campus, including a student assistant position, as long as the combined weekly hours do not exceed the maximums listed above.
A completed time sheet is required for every Work-Study student for each official State Controller pay period. It is the responsibility of each employing department to ensure that all information on the time sheet is accurate and contains all required signatures. The original time sheet(s) must be maintained by the employing office for a five year period. Payroll information from time sheets shall be transferred to the Student Listing and turned in to Payroll by 10:00 a.m. on the first work day of the following State Controller pay period. Timekeepers are required to submit a copy of the Student Listing and student’s timesheet(s) to Financial Aid and Scholarships every month.  Work-Study pay will be issued by the tenth calendar day of each month.
Work Study students are temporary employees of the employing department or agency.  As such, they are expected to maintain the same standards applied to other temporary or permanent employees.  Moreover, as employees, they are required to adhere to the Fair Labor Standards Act which require a 15-minute break for every four consecutive hours worked, and one-half hour unpaid break for every six hours worked per day.
Where applicable, on-campus employing departments are required to insure that Work Study students pass the CSUSB Defensive Driving Test prior to driving any campus vehicle.   Additionally, in the rare circumstance where a Work Study student may use their own vehicle while working, the department must verify that the student has adequate automobile insurance.
Each hiring department is responsible for determining whether their student assistant will be in a position in which a background check is required by law.  Positions in which a background check is currently required by law include, but is not limited to the following:

  • Positions with regular, direct contact with minors, and/or
  • Access to stored criminal offender record information and/or
  • Access to patients, drugs or medication

Rehire Exception:  Any former employee who is re-appointed to a CSU position without a break in service of twelve (12) months or more, will not be subject to the background check requirements.  However, if a student employee is re-hired and his/her job duties have changed, it is necessary to determine if a background check is required by law in the new position.  If it is determined that they are employed in a position in which a background check is required by law, a background check will need to be cleared before the student may begin working.
For additional information regarding CSUSB’s background check policy, please visit the website at:  Background Check Policy
The pay rate for Work Study employment is determined by the university and corresponds to the existing Work-Study pay rate scale.  For Work-Study student salaries, refer to the Federal Work-Study Job Classification Table and Salary Schedule at:   Work Study students provide a valuable contribution to CSUSB in the services that they perform in various departments throughout the university and off-campus. In return for their services, students are paid an hourly wage. The University conforms to the State of California minimum hourly wage rate. Newly hired Work-Study students normally begin at the minimum of the range and may be paid up to the maximum rate.
The pay rate for the Federal Work Study off-campus program is determined by the employing agency and corresponds to the wage scales for the existing labor market and the skills and duties required for the position.  The starting rate of pay must be approved by the Work Study Coordinator or Director of Financial Aid and Scholarships.
Occasionally, job-related problems occur between a supervisor and a student assistant. When such situations arise, the following steps are recommend to resolve issues:

  1. Initially, the problem should be discussed between the supervisor and the Work Study student in an attempt to solve it.
  2. If the issue is not fully resolved at this meeting, the issue should be referred to the Work-Study Coordinator or Financial Aid and Scholarships Director.
  3. The Work Study Coordinator or Financial Aid Director will confer with both parties and make suggestions to resolve the conflict. (This may involve a meeting between the supervisor, student, and the Coordinator/Director.  If a solution has not been reached at this stage, a formal grievance procedure is available. For additional information on the Non-Academic Grievance Policy and Procedures, please visit:
  4. Students may also direct their non-academic grievance to the University Ombuds Officer at: