Work Study FAQ
What is Work-Study?
Work-study (also called student employment) is an opportunity to have a part time job during the school year in one of our many departments on campus that will work around your class schedule. A work-study position is part of your financial aid package and is administered through the Financial Aid Office. Although the name may be confusing, "work-study" DOES NOT indicate that you can expect to study during work hours. Work-study is a resume building job, meaning you are expected to work and develop skills. All Work-Study employees will be paid twice a month for the work hours you complete.
Work-Study at Covenant College is more than just earning a paycheck for work done. It’s an opportunity to learn, grow, and develop in service to the college community and community at large. It’s the time to grow your resume by instilling skills and qualities that stand out. It’s the time to learn the importance of professional relationships. Most importantly it is a time to establish your understanding of, and great privilege to, embody the character of Christ in service, labor, and leadership.
There are two types of Work-Study at Covenant. Federal Work-Study (FWS) and Covenant Work-Study (CWS). Federal Work-Study is determined by the FAFSA and demonstrated need. CWS is determined by the student’s desire to work and dependability to do so. Funding for both is limited and therefore on a first-come, first-served basis.
How do I get it?
Begin by filling out the FAFSA. Federal Work-Study is a needs based program determined by filling out the FAFSA. Covenant Work-Study is determined by the Financial Aid Department’s verification of need or desire to work during the academic year. Funding for both is limited and therefore on a first-come, first-served basis.
I was offered work study, so how do I get started?
First, accept your work study offer on your Banner account (this is found under the financial aid tab, view/accept financial aid).
Next, Freshmen fill out the online team preference form that is found in the new student portal before arriving on campus. Upperclassmen complete the job application form here.
Once you arrive on campus, before your first day of work, complete the required I-9, W4, and G4 forms. These forms are available through WorkBright, an online portal. Prior to your start date you will be emailed a link where to go to fill out the forms. To complete these forms you will need specific forms of original ID. To see the full list of what is required/acceptable please visit the USCIS webpage.
How do I get a particular job I want? How can I study at my job?
You apply through Banner Work-Study Application for Position portal. Include as much detail as possible and submit it for the position of your choice. The supervisor will review it and determine if you are a good fit for that position. You will either be hired or encouraged to look for a different position.
You should not study “on the clock.” Work study is a resume building job, meaning you are expected to work and develop skills.
How many hours can I work? Can I have more than one job?
The amount of hours that you are expected to work depends on the work study authorization that you accept for the year. You are required to complete at least 90% of your total accepted hours by the end of the academic year. If you accepted a $2,000 authorization, that equates to about 10 hours per week of work. If you accepted a $3,000 authorization, that equates to about 15 hours a week of work. In order to make the full awarded potential, you will need to keep up the 10/15 hour a week level throughout the school year.
You are not authorized to work multiple jobs. Only one job is allowed.
I was awarded $2,000/$3,000 in work study, but it isn’t showing on my account balance. Why not?
Remember, work study is a job so as with any job you are not paid until you work and report your time. Work study potential earnings are not credited to your outstanding balance up-front, so you will need to keep this in mind as you plan for the semester’s charges.
You have the option to have your paycheck directly deposited into your personal bank account by completing a direct deposit form (which is the default setup) or you may choose to have your student employment funds credited to your student account.
What, When, and How will I be paid?
Most on-campus positions are minimum wage ($7.25). You will receive a check twice a month on the 15th and the last day of the month. All payments are made directly to your bank account.
What forms do I need to complete?
All new students must complete an I-9, W4, G4, and Direct Deposit Form as part of the Student Employment process. These forms are available through WorkBright, an online portal. Prior to your start date you will be emailed a link where to go to fill out the forms. To complete these forms you will need specific forms of original ID. To see the full list of what is required/acceptable please visit the USCIS webpage. (See www.uscis.gov/i-9-central/acceptable-documents for regulations about these documents.)
Will I be paid the full amount of my award?
You will be paid for the time worked. You are authorized to work up to your award limit. Any portion of the award that remains unearned will be forfeited, as it cannot be transferred to a subsequent academic year.
I didn’t work my 90% of my authorized hours last semester. May I make up that time this semester?
It is required that you work 90% of your authorized hours for the entire academic year. If you have worked less than your average hours in the fall semester, you may work more hours during the spring semester to meet your 90%.
I reduced my hours last semester but I have more free time this semester. May I increase hours to the original amount?
Once you have decreased your hours you are not allowed to increase them without filing for an Appeal to Increase. Once you reduce your hours you will only be allowed those hours in the future. Should you quit, work-study will not be offered to you in future years.
How can I know how many hours I’ve worked so far this semester/academic year?
You can view how many hours you have worked on Banner and your paystub.
I want to work in a different department. How can I change my job?
Work-Study jobs are for the academic year. You are encouraged to begin applying for fall positions in late spring. The best way to get future jobs is to work well in your current position and secure a positive reference from your supervisor.
Will taxes be taken out of my check?
All students are subject to federal and state income taxes. However, students are exempt from Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) taxes as long as the student is enrolled in a minimum of 6 hours (half time). FICA tax is a government tax to fund Social Security and Medicare. The employee’s share is 6.2% of gross pay for Social Security and 1.45% of gross pay for Medicare.
Will I be required to file a tax return?
Work-Study earnings are the same as any other job earnings and subject to the same filing requirements.
Will WS dollars affect my FAFSA for next year?
Need based work-study earnings may be listed on your FAFSA as such. The federal formula used with the FAFSA data will exclude those need based work study earnings. All Federal Work-Study is need based and some CWS is need based. If it is need based it will be offered as Need Based Work-Study instead of CWS.
For further questions you can contact the Work-Study Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.