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Federal Work-Study

The Federal Work-Study (FWS) Program gives part-time jobs to undergraduate and graduate students who are in financial need. Under the program, these students can work to make money to pay for their education expenses, including tuition, books, and room and board.

Some state and institutional work-study awards are offered to students who do not have financial need, but wish to work to help pay their educational expenses.

What kind of work can I do?

The program encourages community service work, as well as work that is related to your classes.

How much money will I make?

You'll be making at least the current federal minimum wage. Some people earn more, but it depends on the type of work and the skills required.

The total amount of your Federal Work-Study award will depend on when you apply, your level of financial need and the funding level of your school.

Commissions or fees may not be paid to Federal Work-Study students.

How will I be paid?

If you're an undergraduate, you'll be paid by the hour. If you're a graduate student, you might be paid by the hour, or you may receive a salary (which means you'll be given a set sum of money for a certain timeframe, such as every week or every other week).

Your school must pay you at least once a month. Also, your school must pay you directly, unless you request that the school make payments to your bank account. You can also ask them to use the money to pay school costs, such as tuition, directly.

Will I be working on campus?

Federal Work-Study jobs can be on campus or off campus.

If you work on campus, you'll usually work for your school. If you work off campus, you will usually work for a private non-profit organization or a public agency. Generally, the work performed off campus must be in the public interest, which means it must benefit some portion of the general public.

Some schools may make agreements with private for-profit employers for Federal Work-Study jobs. If you work in one of these jobs, your work must be as related to your classes as possible.

If you attend a career school, there may be other restrictions about which jobs you can have.

I'd like to make a lot of money. Can I work as many hours as I want?

No. The total amount you earn can't be more than your total Federal Work-Study award.

When scheduling your work, your employer or financial aid administrator will look at your class schedule and your academic progress.

Where can I get more information?

For further information on federal student aid call: 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243)

For more information on Work Study student assistance go to: http://studentaid.ed.gov/types/work-study

Funding is limited to the amount your college receives from the federal government. It is important you meet the school's priority date to complete and file the FAFSA to be considered for a FWS award.

Colorado Work-Study (CWS)

Colorado Work-Study procedures are very similar to Federal Work-Study. There are some Colorado Work-Study funds, however, that may be awarded to students who do not have financial need but want to work to help pay for educational expenses.

Institutional Work-Study and Other Employment

Your college may have work-study money available or offer other employment opportunities that are not federal or state work-study positions. Check with your college to discuss additional work opportunities.