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Getting accepted into college is almost always a thrilling moment. All your hard work paid off! For most soon-to-be college students, reality sets in when they have to figure out how to pay for the ever-rising tuition, room and board, books, transportation, and more! Financing your education can be a challenging task. Luckily, there are various financial aid options that can help you cover the cost of attending college. (See our Guide to Financial Aid for an overview of all the options) One of the best ways to finance your education is through a Work-Study program. On this page we will discuss Work-Study in detail, their benefits, and how you can apply for them.

What is Work-Study?

Work-Study refers to the Federal Work-Study program, a federally funded program that provides part-time jobs to eligible students to help them finance their college education. It was designed to help students with financial need, allowing them to earn money to assist in covering the cost to attend college. Students are given the opportunity to work an on or off-campus job where they are paid by the hour (with a limit on the hours) and earn a paycheck. Students are paid directly by their school.

Benefits of Work-Study

One of the biggest benefits of work-study is that it provides students with valuable work experience while they are still in school. The financial-aid office will typically have a job fair or listing of jobs for students with work-study (check with your school’s financial aid office for exact details). Students then have the opportunity to get real-world experience in a job or area of interest. In addition to the hourly wage, work experience can be added to a student’s resume and be a valuable asset when finding a job following graduation.

Another benefit of Work-Study is that it does not affect your ability to qualify for other financial aid. Work-study income does not need to be included in the FAFSA form.

How to Apply for Work-Study

To apply for a work-study program, you must first complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). On the FAFSA, you will indicate your interest in work-study, and if you meet the eligibility requirements, you will be awarded work-study as part of your financial aid package.

Once you have been awarded work-study, you will need to find a job on campus or off campus. Your college’s financial aid office will provide you with a list of available work-study jobs, and you can also search for job listings on your college’s website or on job search websites.

Eligibility Requirements for a Work-Study Program

To be eligible for a work-study program, you must meet certain criteria, including:

You must be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen

You must have completed the FAFSA

You must demonstrate financial need

You must be enrolled at least half-time in a degree or certificate program

You must maintain satisfactory academic progress


In conclusion, work-study programs are a valuable option for financing your college education. They provide students with valuable work experience, are flexible, and do not affect a student’s eligibility for other forms of financial aid. If you are interested in applying for a work-study program, be sure to complete the FAFSA and check with your college’s financial aid office for available job listings. With a work-study job, you can earn money to help pay for your educational expenses while gaining valuable work experience at the same time.

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