Student Employment Handbook
Purpose of the Program
The Federal Work Study (FWS) and the Student Employment (SEP) Programs are designed to provide eligible students with an opportunity to gain valuable experience as well as a chance to earn money to offset educational and living expenses related to attending Bristol Community College. The FWS and SEP programs are essentially the same --with one difference: FWS monies are federal funds while SEP monies are institutional funds.
Student Eligibility Criteria
To be eligible to receive Federal Work Study funds a student must meet citizenship requirements, enroll at least half time in an eligible academic program, maintain satisfactory progress, and demonstrate financial need. Eligibility during the academic year does not automatically guarantee eligibility for the summer or next year. A new application must be filed for each school year.
The following documents (available on our Forms page) are needed to receive consideration for student work:
Free Application for Student Financial Aid (FAFSA)
BCC Supplemental Application
BCC Work Request Form
Other documents requested by the Financial Aid Office
Applications are evaluated by the Student Employment Coordinator and funds are awarded to qualified students. Funding is limited and awarded based on financial need and the student's suitability to positions available.
Cooperative Education Credit
Some jobs qualify for Cooperative Education. This means that college credit can be received for some of the positions in this program. Enrollment in CED 210 or CED 220 is required. Further information on this option is available from the Cooperative Education Office in Room K123.
- Community Service/America Reads/America Counts
Placements that provide community service are available:
- Tutoring literacy in local elementary schools or math in local junior high schools is available to students enrolling in CED 210, CED 220, or EDU 220. These seminar classes will help provide the guidance and training needed to tutor.
- Positions are also available at area not-for-profit community service agencies. Students can review the list of current community service openings or request consideration for an agency not on the list.
Student employees are considered to be employees of BCC and, as such, are entitled to rights other employees in their status have. The College policies on discrimination, affirmative action, and sexual harassment are described in the Student Handbook
- Job Placement Procedures
Review of Job Openings
Eligible applicants will receive a Referral Form and can then review the online open job listing. Eligible students must present the Referral Form to prospective supervisors since the form indicates that the Financial Aid Office has pre-qualified the student for work study funding. Academic year placements begin in late August
Job Referral, Interview, Hire
Eligible applicants with a Referral Form contact supervisors directly. Students can choose and interview with several supervisors but can be hired for only one position. Supervisors may also interview several candidates before determining the finalist for the open position.
c. Employment Period
Jobs are available during the academic year and the summer. The academic year program runs from September through May. The summer program runs from June through August. Graduating students cannot work beyond the semester in which they complete their degree requirements and students who withdraw from class can work only up to their last date of class attendance.
- Pay Rate, Hours, and Deductions
Award Amount (or Maximum Earnings)
The award amount of FWS or SEP is the maximum amount the student can earn in this position. This amount will be on the financial aid award letter and the Personnel Action Form. To balance the earnings of the program funds, students are allocated a recommended maximum number of hours to work per week on the Personnel Action Form. Any amount that remains unearned at the end of the employment period does not carry over to the next period. This is an employment program and funds are earned as wages; the wages are not applied to tuition and fee charges.
The recommended maximum number of hours that a student can work per week is provided on the Personnel Action Form. The funds are budgeted to ensure that the student can work through the entire employment period. Work hours should be scheduled so they will not conflict with academic responsibilities and no more than eight hours can be worked in one day. Students cannot work during the time they are scheduled to be in class. Working during scheduled class time, even as a one time exception, is not permitted. Students are paid for hours worked and no compensation will be given for sick time, vacation time, or lunch breaks
d. Payroll Deductions
All earnings are subject to federal and state income taxes and will be deducted in accordance to the Withholding Forms completed by the student. In addition, a student employee enrolled in less than six credits for the employment period will also be subject to deductions for the OBRA retirement plan and Medicare tax. Information on the OBRA plan is available from the Human Resources Office in Room D208c. Once a student ceases this employment, the OBRA funds can be withdrawn without penalty.
The Payroll Office will send timesheets to the authorized timekeeper who will forward them to the supervisor or student. Timesheets must be signed by the student employee and supervisor (or other individual authorized to sign). The work week begins on Thursday and ends on the following Wednesday.
Student and supervisors share the responsibility for submitting timesheets in accordance with the part time employee payroll schedule published by the Payroll Office. Generally, timesheets should be turned in to the Timekeeper every Wednesday, by the end of the day. Unfortunately, late timesheets cannot be processed until the next pay cycle.
Payment to Student
Paychecks are available every two weeks, on Friday, in the Student Accounts Office or by direct deposit. A valid identification card is needed to pick up the check.
- Student Responsibilities
All employees are expected to give regular, punctual, efficient, and cooperative performance on the job. It is expected that the supervisor will be notified if the student will be late or absent from work.
Student employees may have access to confidential information and are bound by confidentiality standards set forth by the supervisor, department, and college. Failure to comply with the standards will result in immediate termination of employment. The Student Confidentiality Agreement must be signed by each employee.
Appropriate attire is expected. Some departments have a more stringent dress code than others and this should be discussed with the supervisor.
d. Termination and/or Reassignment
A student who is dissatisfied with their position should first discuss the circumstances with the supervisor. If a resolution is not possible, the student can contact the Student Employment Coordinator. Reassignment to another position will be explored and we will attempt to provide the student with other opportunities. However, since positions are limited, the possibility exists that another job that is compatible with the student's skills may not be available. At the discretion of the Student Employment Coordinator, a student with poor conduct or poor performance may forfeit their right to participate in the program.
- Have a positive attitude.
- Be punctual.
- Dress neatly, no ripped jeans, no revealing or flamboyant clothing.
- Your supervisor is now your boss…keep good communication.
- Don't be afraid to ask questions.
- Team effort is key to making a job enjoyable. As an employee, you are part of a team delivering a service. Team members lighten the burden and help each other achieve a goal.
- Don't allow friends to hang around while you work.
In dealing with the public:
- You may be the first person with whom a visitor may have contact. This means that at that time, you represent the college. The impression you make will influence the person's opinion of the department or College and you have only one opportunity to make a first impression.
- As a representative of one of the College's offices, many times you will be dealing with fellow students and community people. Keep in mind that you must respect confidentiality, remain polite and calm.
- Don't keep a visitor waiting...ask how you can help.
- To help maintain confidentiality and respect visitors in the office, avoid talking across a room. Get up to talk to someone.
- If you don't know an answer, it's okay to say you don't know. But, also say, "I'll try to find out."
- There may be a time when it seems appropriate to interrupt your supervisor during a meeting. Check with your supervisor for their recommendations and proper procedures.
- If a person is abusive to you on the telephone or in person, refer the person immediately to your supervisor. Don't let a caller upset you to the point you are rude to them.
Using the telephone:
- Keep a message pad handy.
- Take messages clearly and accurately. Ask the caller to spell names, record the telephone number, time, and date. Initial all notes and be sure the message is delivered to the appropriate person.
- Speak clearly and do not talk with food, gum, or pencil in your mouth.
- Answer telephone calls promptly. It is usually expected that calls are picked up by the third ring.
- Remember to place a call on "hold". If the receiver is just placed on the desktop, the caller will still hear office conversation.
- When you complete your call, remember to say "Thank you" or "Good Bye". Let the caller hang up first.
- Screening calls can sometimes be complicated. A polite way of asking who is calling would be "May I tell Ms. Smith who is calling?"
- Request the purpose of the call when a person is seeking an appointment.
- Your telephone voice is important. A warm and cordial tone shows interest in the conversation. Guard against the tendency to let your voice become mechanical.
- When asking a caller to wait, ask "Will you please hold while I get that information?" and wait for the reply. When you return to the call, thank the caller for waiting.
- Supervisor Responsibilities
Requesting Student Help-On Campus
College departments and employees can request student help in March for the coming Summer and Academic Year. The Request for Student Help (on campus) is completed by the requesting supervisor and submitted to the Financial Aid Office. The number of positions that can be approved is determined by the funding available. A summary of all positions approved will be provided to each department in May.
Off Campus Requests
Not-for-profit community service agencies are eligible to participate in the Federal Work Study Program. These agencies are responsible for twenty-five percent of the student employee's gross wages and will be billed this share at the end of Fall, Spring, and Summer sessions. The Request Form/Community Service Statement and FWS Agreement must be completed by the agency. (The agency share is waived for placements involving literacy, America Reads, or America Counts Programs.)
Supervision and Training
The supervisor is responsible for proper training and supervision of the student employee's work. It is not appropriate and not the intent of the program to allow students to study while on the job. Additionally, the supervisor needs to monitor the student's work schedule and academic schedule to ensure the student does not work during the student's scheduled class time. Working during scheduled class time, even as a one time exception, is not permitted. The supervisor must review the confidentiality standards for the department and college. Once the standards are reviewed, the supervisor should complete the Confidentiality Agreement with the student employee (supervisor and student employee each retain a copy).
A student's employment is conditional on satisfactory performance of the duties assigned. A supervisor who is dissatisfied with a student's performance should inform the worker and, to the extent possible, help the student to improve. Keep in mind that this is a training program and many times the student's first work experience. If a problem persists and cannot be resolved, the supervisor has the discretion to release the student from the position. If a termination from the job occurs, the Student Employment Coordinator should be notified immediately...this applies to voluntary termination as well. A Termination Notice and Employee Evaluation should be completed at this time.
The supervisor should discuss job performance, attitude, growth, and reliability at least once a semester with the student employee.
The student work program provides an opportunity to many students to gain job skills and work experience. For many, this is their first work experience. As such, training and supervision are important in preparing the employee for jobs beyond their college experience. On the job training is exactly what the name implies. Orientation to the department and job are important in helping the employee feel part of a team. The orientation may include the following:
- Conduct an office tour and introductions, review office hours, dress code, timesheets, office supplies, work space, and breaks
- Review a job description, standards of performance, confidentiality standards, the evaluation process, and office systems.
- Explain proper channels of communication and who is available when assistance is needed.
- Supervision is an important facet of the employee's growth. Give directions clearly and ahead of time, commend for a job well done, critique in private, provide an opportunity to train for greater responsibility, make each employee feel a part of the team