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Find Colleges with Work Study and On-Campus Jobs

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  • 0:03 College Expenses
  • 0:44 Work Study
  • 2:50 Campus Employment
  • 4:09 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Natalie Boyd

Natalie is a teacher and holds an MA in English Education and is in progress on her PhD in psychology.

In order to defray the cost of college, many students find that they have to work part-time. In this lesson, we will explore two part-time employment opportunities for students: federal work-study jobs and campus employment.

College Expenses

Ben and Marty are best friends. They've been hanging out since they were kids and they're planning on going to college together in a couple of years. Neither of them is rich, though Ben's family is more middle class than Marty's. Either way, both of them know that they'll need to work to help pay for college.

College is expensive. College expenses include things like tuition, books, room and board, lab fees, and many other things. Many students, like Ben and Marty, find that they need a part-time job to make ends meet. Let's look at the job options available to Ben and Marty while at college: federal work study and campus employment.

Work Study

Marty and Ben both need jobs at college. The good news is there are a lot of options. One of the options is the Federal Work Study Program, which is a form of financial aid that allows college students to earn money for work, usually on campus. Because it is a type of financial aid, there are eligibility requirements. For example, Marty's family income is low, so he qualifies for work study, but Ben doesn't. So how exactly does work study work? There are several steps that Marty has to go through in order to earn money.

1. Fill out the FAFSA. A FAFSA is the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. It's the document that helps the government figure out what loans, grants, and work study money each student should be getting. Marty and students like him can fill this out online and as the name suggests, submitting a FAFSA is free.

2. Apply for a work study job. Once Marty receives his financial aid letter, which includes his work study award, he should look for a work study job on his college campus. This could be in an academic department or in another organization on campus. He could end up as a research assistant, giving tours of the campus, or many other jobs. He can typically find work study jobs through the website of his school's employment office.

3. Work. After Marty gets a work study job, he'll work certain hours per week, which will be agreed upon by him and his boss. He'll be paid an hourly rate, usually near minimum wage. However, everyone's work study award has a limit, so Marty can't work too many hours or he'll run out of aid before the end of the semester. Because Marty qualifies for work study, he should make sure that the college he's applying to offers work study positions. Though most reputable colleges do, he should ask the financial aid office at the school to make sure.

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