Navarre - May

Financial Aid student employee Nicole Navarre assists Michael May.

All departments may offer work study under new system

Beginning this fall, the University will change the way Federal Work Study (FWS) is administered on campus. Instead of Student Financial Aid allocating a sum of work-study dollars to designated departments to hire student employees, as has been done in the past, the funds will now follow the students, and any department with funding for student employees can hire FWS students.

This is good news for students and for departments that did not previously receive an allocation, said Suzanne Fahrer, associate director for program management in Student Financial Aid. Students who are awarded work-study eligibility as part of their financial aid package will be able to utilize their award in any campus department.

“It will make recruiting work-study students more competitive,” Fahrer predicted.

Departments that hire FWS-eligible students will be charged only 25 percent of the students’ total earnings, a significant salary savings for units. The remaining 75 percent comes from the University’s FWS funding.

Otherwise, the same guidelines for student employment will apply. Departments will continue to post jobs as usual, and have the option to list the job vacancy as “FWS only” as they do now, according to Michelle Simmons, senior associate director of the Career Center.

The new process brings BGSU in line with its sister universities, said Laura Emch, associate financial aid director for systems.

To further explain the changes, the financial aid and student employment offices will host a series of informational workshops. Sessions will be held in 201 Bowen-Thompson Student Union beginning next week:

• March 10, from 9:30-11:30 a.m.
• March 12, from 1:30-3:30 p.m.
• April 6, from 1:30-3:30 p.m.
• April 17, from 9:30-11:30 a.m.

To attend a session, contact Linda Snyder at or 2-9671.

Under the new system, when students receive their financial aid package, they will be required to accept their work-study funding in order to be paid from FWS funds, Fahrer said. If they choose not to accept it and then change their mind later, they will have to request a review of their case by Student Financial Aid. If there is still money in the FWS pool and the student still has financial need, an award will be made.

However, the work-study pool is limited and, once it is gone, no more funds will be awarded, Fahrer said.

About 850 students currently receive Federal Work Study funds, Fahrer said. University Libraries is typically one of the campus’s biggest employers of work-study students.

March 2, 2009