Federal Work-Study is an employment and need-based program subsidized by the U.S. Department of Education. FWS allows students to earn up to $4,000 per academic year for education and living expenses through employment with authorized on- and off-campus organizations.
FWS earnings are paid directly to students.
To be eligible for FWS, undergraduate students must be degree-seeking, enrolled in at least one credit hour, and submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Priority will be given to students who submit their FAFSA by March 1 of each year.
To verify FWS, log in to eServices. Under the “financial aid” tab, select “financial aid status,” then select “financial aid history” to see the amount awarded.
Any change to enrollment status must be reported to the FWS coordinator. Failure to do so may result in cancellation of the FWS award.
Contact the Federal Work-Study department with questions about eligibility or assistance with the verification process. Read the Federal Work-Study Student Handbook for details.
On-campus job opportunities include clerical support, student services, research and laboratory support, computing, accounting, tutoring, security, lifeguarding and other specialized positions.
Students can also apply for a job with one of our nonprofit community service partners. Typical off-campus opportunities include tutoring, disability support services, social services, public safety, gerontology and accounting.
Positions pay competitive hourly wages and offer flexible hours to accommodate academic schedules. Some locations require students to provide their own transportation; however, many off-campus sites are within walking distance of VCU, and several employers are located on the RamRide shuttle route.
All FWS jobs are available through Handshake at VCU. First-time users should click the blue "VCU Sign On" button and log in using their VCU eID and password.
To search, go to the “Jobs” menu and select "Filters." Under the options for various job filters, check the box for "Work Study" to narrow your search to only Federal Work-Study positions.
Jobs are updated daily, so check back often for new openings.
Before applying for a position, students should complete their profile and upload their resume. Each posting will specify whether additional documents such as references, cover letters and writing samples are required.
The job search process is competitive, and many positions are filled early in the academic year. Students awarded FWS are not guaranteed to find a job. Unused FWS awards will not be replaced with another form of financial assistance.
VCU Career Services can help students set themselves apart from other applicants.
Students may apply for as many FWS jobs as they’d like, but are only allowed to accept one position. Workload is limited to 29 hours per week while classes are in session.
The FWS program provides support staff to VCU departments and community organizations in Richmond at little or no cost to the employer.
Federal funds cover 75% of FWS student wages; VCU funds the remaining 25%. This labor distribution and cost coverage is effective for the 2020-2021 academic year only and will be reevaluated yearly.
Departments interested in hiring a FWS student should:
To participate in the program, nonprofit organizations and government agencies should: