If your student’s college provides a summer orientation session for incoming students, your student should definitely plan to attend. At many colleges summer orientation is mandatory, and for good reason. Although your student has probably visited the campus during the selection process, perhaps multiple times, this may be your student’s first introduction to the college as an official student. He will look at the school differently, he will be treated differently, and both he and the school may have different expectations than when he visited as an applicant.
Your child has been accepted to the college of his choice. Congratulations! You’ve received that all-important financial aid package and you’re all thinking about how to make it work. A portion of this financial aid package is labeled Federal Work Study. What exactly does that mean?
The Federal Work Study portion of the financial aid package is the portion that a student can earn through a part-time job on campus. Not every campus job will be designated as a work-study job, but there are usually many different types of jobs available on campus which will qualify. These jobs may include anything from working in the library, tutoring, cafeteria jobs, maintenance jobs, or clerical office positions. Students apply for the jobs and are paid, usually federal minimum wage. Obtaining a work-study job is usually handled during the first couple of weeks of the semester.
Work Study funds are provided to the school by the federal government. The college will determine how to use these federal funds and which jobs will be designated as work-study positions. The awarding of funds to students is based on financial need as determined by the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). Each school sets its own policies, procedures, and deadlines for applying for these jobs.
There are a few things which parents and students should consider and remember as they look at the work-study portion of the financial aid package.