Unlike other aid programs, work-study is aid that needs to be earned.  Work-study is need based and limited in funding so not all students will qualify for it. A student awarded work-study will only receive the funding if they secure a position and work the hours.

Work-study positions are available on campus and at non-profit agencies in the community. Employers are flexible in setting work hours to accommodate a student's class schedule. UM policy limits students to working no more than 19 hours per week so that a student's studies are not adversely impacted.

Though work-study funding is taxable income, it is excluded from student wages on the FAFSA in the upcoming year.

For questions on how COVID-19 impacts work study, see "Federal Aid Updates" on the FAQ page here.

The Federal and State guidance for student employment has been updating almost daily so the Financial Aid Office would like to share the most recent information. The Commission of Higher Education recently determined that the hiring freeze across the Montana University System does not apply to Work Study employment which is part of a student's financial aid offer. On and Off-campus employers may employ eligible students through the Work Study program. More information is available on the COVID FAQ under Student Employment.
(April 30, 2020)

Work-Study Details

At UM, Federal Work-Study is offered if there is sufficient unmet need after all other grants and Federal Direct Subsidized Loans are awarded. Funding is limited, so priority is given to undergraduates with an EFC lower than 15,500 who complete the FAFSA. It is not offered if a student indicated on the FAFSA that they were not interested in being considered for work-study.

Having work-study on one's award letter is not a guarantee that a student will be able to secure a work-study position. Current work-study students are not assured renewal of their funding unless they continue to meet the eligibility requirements.

Both non-profit organizations and governent agencies (Federal, State, County, City etc.), can become Work Study employers provided they meet certain conditions. Employers can request an application here.
Please visit this page to request a Work Study Hire Form.
Please visit this page to change the supervisor of record or update the contact information for the supervisor of record.

Eligible work-study students must perform a job search and be hired by a department or agency to receive funding. It is best to begin this search just prior to the start of the autumn semester or during the first couple of weeks of classes.

UM has an electronic job board, Handshake, that lists both work-study and non work-study employment opportunities. Questions about using Handshake should be directed to Alexandria Harris in Career Services.

Though the majority of positions are filled at the start of the school year, some positions remain open well into the autumn semester. Further, there is often mid-year turnover, so students interested in working should be able to secure employment.

Once a student has accepted a position offered by a department or agency they must submit the hire card to financial aid. If a student has not been recently employed by UM they will also have to submit employment paperwork required by Human Resources (e.g. W-4 form and I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification Form). A student cannot begin working until all required paperwork is submitted.

As each payroll period is completed a student's earnings will be reflected in the paid amount of the work-study award visible in CyberBear. Students can continue to work even if they have exceeded the amount allotted for the given term as long as they have not exceeded their total award amount for the year.

If a student reaches the annual award amount they must stop working, unless the employer is willing to hire them as a non-work-study student. It is recommended that students work with their employers to budget their time to ensure continuous employment throughout the school year.

For further details on policies and procedures, students and their supervisors should refer to UM's Work-Study Employment Manual.

Work-study is not disbursed to a student's account like other financial aid. Rather, it is paid in the form of a paycheck, issued every two weeks, with the amount paid dependent on the rate of pay and number of hours worked. Because of this, work-study is not available to be used as a pending credit on the registration bill.

Students can sign up for Direct Deposit in the Payroll Office in Lommasson Center. If a student opts not to have the funds electronically deposited, then paychecks are generally made available every two weeks. There is approximately a two-week lag from the end of the pay period to when a student gets paid.

The payroll deadlines and schedules are available here under "Bi-Weekly: UM Student/Graduate Student":  HR Payroll Schedules

The student time sheets for the year are available here:

SP 3-4 New BiWeekly Time Card 4-Jan-20 to 31-Jan-20.docx

SP 5-6 New BiWeekly Time Card 1-Feb-20 to 28-Feb-20.docx

SP 7-8 New BiWeekly Time Card 29-Feb-20 to 27-Mar-20.docx

SP 9-10 New BiWeekly Time Card 28-Mar-20 to 24-Apr-20.docx

SP 11-12 New BiWeekly Time Card 25-Apr-20 to 22-May-20.docx

SP 13-14 New BiWeekly Time Card 23-May-20 to 19-Jun-20.docx

SP 15-16 New BiWeekly Time Card 20-Jun-20 to 17-Jul-20.docx

SP 17-18 New BiWeekly Time Card 18-Jul-20 to 14-Aug-20.docx

SP 19-20 New BiWeekly Time Card 15-Aug-20 to 11-Sep-20.docx

SP 21-22 New BiWeekly Time Card 12-Sep-20 to 9-Oct-20.docx

SP 23-24 New BiWeekly Time Card 10-Oct-20 to 6-Nov-20.docx

SP 25-26 New BiWeekly Time Card 7-Nov-20 to 4-Dec-20.docx

For information on Summer Work Study, please visit our Summer Aid page.



Students who are not awarded work-study, or have been awarded work-study but are not able to find a job to their liking, may be able to secure non-work-study employment.

Businesses in the community and several on-campus departments offer non-work-study positions. Many of these positions are posted through Griz eRecruiting.