Hiring Student Workers

Student worker and staff member reviewing brochure
Many students take advantage of student employment opportunities and gain valuable experience working on-campus.

Types of Student Employment

Federal Work-Study (FWS) provides jobs for students (first and second bachelor's degree or graduate students) who demonstrate financial need. Completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is required; awards are made on a first-come, first-served basis. Eligibility to work in a Federal Work-Study position requires a Federal Work-Study award. Students who are hired by a department to work via Federal Work-Study must satisfy all general financial aid requirements before they will be eligible to work. Students selected for federal verification must submit all requested documents and be reviewed by the financial aid office before an authorization to work will be granted.

Regular Student Employment (RSE) allows on-campus employment for students who do not qualify for Federal Work-Study. Completion of the FAFSA is not required.

Graduate Assistantships are available for master’s or doctoral degree seeking students who may be placed in academic programs, administrative offices, external works sites, or other sites approved by the Graduate Dean or Associate Graduate Dean. Benefits for graduate, teaching and research assistants include a stipend and tuition waiver that vary according to the length of employment (months) and the number of hours worked per week (10 or 20). Learn more about graduate assistantships. A Handshake employer account can help you advertise your Graduate Assistantship to students. Contact the Career Center at 410-704-2233 to open an account today.

Internships provide students with short-term professional experiences related to their major or career goals. The work is performed in a professional environment under the guidance and supervision of a staff member with expertise in the student’s field of interest. Both paid and unpaid internships are available at on- and off-campus sites. Learn more about posting jobs and internships.

Eligibility Requirements

Both undergraduate and graduate students must be registered for at least six credits and be in good academic standing as defined by the current TU Undergraduate and Graduate Catalogs.

How to Advertise

All student positions must be posted in Handshake (an online job and internship database) to promote equity and ensure all students have access to opportunities. The Career Center also hosts an on-campus jobs fair every year, typically held in August or September.

Work Hours and Location

Employment should not interfere with students’ educational goals. A normal work week is 10 to 20 hours, and 20 hours per week is the maximum students may work on campus. Students and employers generally coordinate the hours to be worked, and most jobs allow students to arrange their schedules around their classes. Students are not permitted to work during scheduled classes or exams.

Students may work more than one job; however, they are limited to working a total of 20 hours a week for all on-campus jobs.

Students should inform all supervisors that they work more than one, on-campus job. Working more than one FWS job usually means that the student will earn his/her FWS award sooner, depending on the number of hours he/she works and the total amount of the award. Both the student and the supervisor(s) will be notified when the student is close to earning the full award. If a student earns his/her full FWS award before the end of the year, each department will need to decide whether it can continue to employ the student as a regular student employee.

Learn more about student employment hours.

Telework may be appropriate for some on-campus student employment positions. 

Work Wages

As of January 2022, Towson University increased the minimum wage for student employees to $15 per hour.

  • Depending on the job responsibilities, new student hires are paid anywhere from minimum wage to pay reflecting higher skill sets and responsibilities per hour
  • Pay increases are at the employer's discretion, however the average pay increase is $.25 - $.50 per academic year

It is recommended that departments review current work hours and pay rates, forecast for potential changes and make necessary adjustments in order to account for this requirement within existing budgets. If you have questions, please contact Financial Services Helpline at 410-704-5599, option 1 or email .

Employment Paperwork

The On-Campus Student Employment Checklist (PDF) provides clear guidance, navigating student employees and supervisors to the proper offices to receive and/or submit the Student Employee Hiring Form (PDF), W-4 and I-9 forms. Learn more about student employment paperwork.

New Student Employee Orientation

New student employee orientation is an important element of the student employment recruitment and retention process. A new student employee orientation helps workers feel welcome, and assists them in adjusting and understanding policies and procedures while providing all students with the same baseline information.


Guidelines are in place to address issues such as performance, conduct, student driving, fingerprinting and ending employment.

Student Employee Files

Each department maintains a personnel file for each student employee throughout the duration of employment and three years after employment ceases. Files will include the following information:

  • Student Employment Application
  • A copy of the current class schedule
  • A copy of the previous semester grades
  • A current copy of the Student Employee Hiring Form and past Student Employee
  • Hiring Forms (if applicable)
  • Disciplinary actions (if applicable)
  • Copies of time sheets (in order to monitor FWS wages)
  • Documentation of compensation exceptions
  • Student Employee Competencies Evaluation Form (PDF)

Professional Development

Periodically, the Career Center will host student employee workshops on topics such as customer service, time management, diversity in the workplace and leadership. Please check the Professional Development & Training page for updates on student employee workshops.

The Office of Human Resources currently conducts the Student Employment and Supervising Student Employees workshops along with a host of other workshops for further professional and personal development available to all Towson University faculty and staff.

National Student Employment Week

Each year colleges and universities across the country recognize the importance of the student work experience during National Student Employment Week, which typically is celebrated during the second full week of April.