Stretch departmental funds — hire a work-study student

More than 1,200 WUSTL students are work-study eligible

Student Financial Services can help departments locate and hire part-time student workers for the 2011-12 academic year — and, at the same time, help departments stretch their budgets a bit further.

Departments hiring eligible federal work-study students pay only 50 percent of the student’s total earnings. The other 50 percent is covered with U.S. Department of Education funding. For the 2011-12 academic year, approximately 1,200 students are eligible for work-study.

More than 900 work-study-eligible undergraduates worked in more than 170 university departments and offices during the 2010-11 academic year, including in the Community Service Office, Edison Theatre and Engineering Student Services.

“Our work-study students are indispensible,” says Stephanie Kurtzman, Community Service Office director and associate director for the Gephardt Institute. “They take tremendous responsibilities to run key programs such as Each One Teach One and university-wide blood drives, manage inquiries to the front desk, and oversee our marketing and communication efforts.

“They also keep us in touch with the student pulse and generate great ideas for innovations to our office’s programs and services,” Kurtzman says. “We couldn’t do half of what we do without our work-study students, and, at the same time, I believe they’re gaining valuable career skills, mentorship and professional etiquette.”

Each year, the U.S. Department of Education provides WUSTL with funding that subsidizes the wages of student workers eligible to participate in the Federal Work-Study Program.

This helps departments and departments and offices obtain talented, part-time employees and, at the same time, helps students finance some of their education costs.

“Work-study students are an excellent addition to the staff,” says Bill Larson, Edison Theatre’s operations manager. “I can’t tell you how many times the professional touring artists let us know how impressed they are with our student staff — and these are artists touring nationally and internationally.

“Our department saves more than $10,000 annually through the work-study program,” Larson says. “Without the work-study program, Edison Theatre could not afford to do as many productions as we do each year.”

Donna Williams, Engineering Student Services’ business manager, says Engineering Student Services has hired work-study students for more than 15 years in positions from tour guides to tutors.

“The program has provided us an opportunity to grow in areas of need,” Williams says. “For example, we have been able to add additional tutors to our individualized tutoring program and to schedule additional weekly helpdesk sessions. The tutoring program helps students build academic confidence and increases their likelihood of success.”

For assistance with hiring work-study-eligible students, contact James McDonald, assistant director of Student Financial Services, at (314) 935-6847 or