Federal Work Study

What is “work-study”?

USF receives Federal funds from a Department of Education grant. USF contributes matching funds that are used to create jobs for students who receive Federal Work Study (FWS) awards and want to work part-time while going to college.

How do I find out if I am eligible for work-study?

To find out if they are eligible for work-study, students must fill out the FAFSA at www.fafsa.ed.gov and then contact a USFSM Financial Aid representative. The financial aid office is located in room C107 and can be contacted via email at finaid@sar.usf.edu.

If I choose to take advantage of my work-study award and get a job, does that mean it’s a job where I can also study while I’m at work?

No. Think of it as any other job, except that your pay comes from the federal work-study grant. As in any job, your employer will expect you to successfully perform the required duties of the position. Since your supervisor will be a member of the USF staff and faculty, they will understand the importance of your academic goals, and will provide some flexibility with your work schedule.

If I want to take advantage of my FWS award, how do I find a job?

Begin by visiting Optimal Resume (first-time users will need to register). Once you register, you can search for employment by entering University of South Florida as the company name in the job search tool. When you have located a job you wish to apply for, send your resume to the contact person listed in the job posting.

What if I need help creating a resume?

For help creating a professional and polished resume, please visit the Optimal Resume website. If you would like further assistance, please contact Career Services at 941-359-4586.

What if I don’t find a position on College Central?

Contact Career Services located in C107 or at 941-359-4586 and they can assist you with securing employment on campus.

Will I be interviewed for the position?

Yes. Students can polish their interviewing skills by using the Optimal Interview software. The Optimal Interview provides valuable insight into the interview questions and examples. Students can video record and self-assess their presentation. Schedule a private session through Career Services at 941-359-4586.

What must I do once I am offered the position?

The supervisor will write you a letter of job offer. Take a copy of this letter to Financial Aid. Before beginning work, the student will need to schedule an appointment with Human Resources to complete their new hire paperwork (they may contact Carolyn Dyson at 941-359-4224). Students should also complete an online employment application.

To complete new hire paperwork, the student will need to bring:

  • A printout of OASIS Award
  • A printout of the job description
  • Original documents for verification of US work authorization (see list attached to the offer letter for acceptable documents)
  • A voided check to set-up direct deposit (direct deposit is mandatory)

Please note that a student may not begin working prior to completing their new hire paperwork.

Can I begin my job right away?

You will negotiate your start date with your supervisor. The majority of students who elect to do “work-study” start their jobs during the first three or four weeks of classes and work until finals week of the semester. Work-study appointments may not exceed 20 hours per week when classes are in session, with most students scheduling about 12-15 hours per week. You can work up to 40 hrs. a week during USF recognized breaks.

What if I have more questions or need additional help?

  • For questions related to your FWS eligibility or regarding adjustments to your FWS award, contact your Financial Aid counselor.
  • For questions relating to finding a position on campus, contact Career Services at (941) 359‐4586.
  • For questions regarding number of hours worked,scheduling, pay, time off, or job performance, contact your supervisor.