Skip to main content Skip to main navigation Skip to footer content

Student Employment FAQ

What is Federal Work Study?

Federal Work Study is a Title IV federal financial aid program that encourages undergraduate students with financial need to find part-time jobs, allowing them to earn money to help pay education expenses.  It is offered to students based on their demonstrated financial need using information from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students earn this money by working and receiving monthly paychecks from IWU's Payroll Department. It does not automatically go towards their cost of attendance expenses. Also, FWS students are not required to work, but it is a benefit that may help them find work. Through this program, students may earn up to the amount listed on their financial aid offer, and their wages will be subsidized by the federal government. Because of this subsidy, some employers require or prefer students with FWS. We recommend that you indicate on your job applications if you have Federal Work Study.

FWS positions can be found in nearly every academic and administrative office on campus, as well as Shirk Rec Center and Ames Library.

If I am not awarded work study in my financial aid package, can I still work?

Due to the number of student employment eligible students vs. the number of jobs available, there are limited jobs that can be considered payroll for students who do not have an employment opportunity awarded in their financial aid package. 
Departments with jobs that require a special skill or talent may be able to hire students as payroll student workers if an eligible student is not available to take the position. These positions include: tutoring a foreign language, computer tech positions, teaching assistant positions, building sets or sewing costumes for plays in the Theatre department, raising support from alumni, lifeguarding, playing a musical instrument, etc.
All departments intending to hire a student for a payroll position must submit an appeal form to the Student Employment Program Coordinator for approval.  

If hired, is there anything I need to do before I will be authorized to start working?

Yes, United States law requires anyone who is employed to complete the I9/W4 employment forms.  Students need to present documents that establish both identity and eligibility to work in the United States before the forms will be considered complete.
Examples of acceptable forms that establish identity include: a school ID, driver's license, state ID, or a passport.
Examples of forms that establish eligibility to work in the U.S. include: social security card, birth certificate, or a passport.
A complete list of documents can be found on the USCIS website under acceptable documents
Federal regulation states that the documents must be the original, physical document with the exception of the birth certificate which can be a certified copy with a raised seal of authenticity, if not the original.  All documents must be unexpired.  Copies and faxes cannot be accepted. 

Where can I find these required employment forms?

The I9/W4 employment forms are available on the Financial Aid website or in the Financial Aid Office.  Incoming students awarded an employment opportunity as part of the financial aid package will also have these forms sent via email during the summer. 

Where can I find available jobs?

Student Job Listings are posted on the job website located in the Student Employment section of the Financial Aid website. To be eligible for most jobs on campus, a student will need an employment opportunity awarded as part of their financial aid award package. Jobs are not guaranteed as students must secure a position on their own. 

How many hours per week can I work?

Typically students are awarded a student employment amount of $2400 for the school year, $1200 per semester. In order to earn this amount over the course of the school year, a student will need to work an average of 7-7.5 hours per week for the 2023-2024 school year. If a student works more than the average hours per week, once the $2400 amount is earned, the student will be notified that his/her work-study amount has been earned and will be asked to stop working. A student can choose to work less than the average hours per week if they are not concerned with earning the maximum award. This is up to the student and his/her financial situation. 

Can I work more than one campus job?

Holding two student employment positions is allowed if the student is splitting the 7-7.5 hours between two departments, or picking up extra hours because he/she has fallen behind in earnings toward the financial aid package award. Occasionally students who are working a 7-7.5 hour per week job under the Student Employment Program are also requested to work in one of the specialty payroll positions mentioned earlier.  If this is approved, the student is allowed to work both positions but is limited to a total of 12 hours per week.

I am an RA this year. Can I work as a student employee?

Returning students have the opportunity to work as an RA - Resident Assistant or as a Sodexo student manager, but cannot do both. Choosing to work either of these positions replaces the student employment opportunity award (if eligible) from the financial aid package. If a student chooses to take one of these positions, the student will receive either free room or free board as payment, making it against university policy to participate in the student employment program.

How much will I be paid?

Illinois Wesleyan University will pay $11.00 per hour for the 2023 fall semester and $11.50 per hour for the 2024 spring semester. 

How often will I be paid?

Students receive payment once per month during the school year and bi-weekly in the summer.  The pay date for the school year is currently on the 10th of each month or the Friday before if the tenth falls on a weekend.

 Is my pay applied directly to my tuition bill?

No.  Students can pick up their paycheck and sign it over to the Business Office or have the paycheck directly deposited to their bank account and write a personal check towards the tuition bill.

 Where can I pick up my paychecks?

If students do not opt to have their paychecks directly deposited to their bank accounts, paychecks are available at the cashier's window at the Business Office, located at 109 Holmes Hall. Please be prepared to present a picture ID for verification before the check will be released.


General FAQ

Loans FAQ

Scholarships and Grants FAQ

Stephanie Iskra - Student Employment Program Coordinator - Financial Aid

Department - Financial Aid