What is Federal Work-Study?


The Federal Work-Study Program provides need-based funding for part-time jobs to Undergraduate and Graduate students who need additional financial aid. It originated in 1965 by the Office of Education of the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.

Many jobs are available, both on and off-campus and include community service work. The FWS Program offers training for our students where they can work up to 20 hours weekly and gain valuable experience.


To be considered for the Federal Work-Study (FWS) Program for 2023-2024, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and answer “Yes” to the question, “Are you interested in work-study?” on the FAFSA application. Students may be allocated a Federal Work-Study award for the academic year based on the FAFSA. Federal Work-Study funds are allocated by The Department of Education on a first-come, first-serve basis; therefore, we advise that you complete your FAFSA as early as possible. Please keep in mind, answering “Yes” to the Work-Study question on FAFSA does not guarantee an award. 

Note: Students who accept the Work-Study award via your CUNYfirst account, will receive instructions concerning placement in August. 


Work Study is awarded to:

  • U.S. citizens and eligible non-citizens
  • Be a matriculated student in a degree granting program at Queens College, and enrolled at least half-time (6 credits) per semester
  • Be in good academic standing and making Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) toward a degree, based on Federal Title IV aid guidelines
  • Not be in default of a Federal Perkins Loan or Direct Loan
  • Not owe a refund of a Federal Pell Grant, Federal SEOG or other federal aid
  • Meet other eligibility requirements

Accepting your FWS award

Eligible students who are awarded FWS may view their award information on CUNYfirst via Student Center by clicking the Financial Aid tile. Students can accept their FWS award offer (Fall and Spring) on their CUNYfirst account. Awards that are not accepted may be cancelled in the future. If you were awarded and have accepted your Federal Work-Study award on CUNYfirst, an email with instructions will be sent. Job placement is done by appointment only. 


The pay rate for On-Campus jobs will be $16 hourly for Undergraduate and Graduate students.  Students are paid every two weeks using the payment schedule (which is provided during placement). Your first paycheck may take up to 4 weeks to receive.

Note: You may not earn more during the academic year than the total amount of your award for that year. You and your Supervisor are expected to keep track of your work hours. Compare them with your remaining award balance so that you do not work beyond your award amount.


Because Federal Work-Study awards are assigned by The Department of Education on a first-come, first-served basis, funding can run out. However, we do maintain a waitlist for interested students should additional funding become available. The Office of Financial Aid Services will notify you via your QC email if you have been awarded a Federal Work-Study grant through the waitlist. To be added to the waitlist, you must be meeting the requirements listed above under Eligibility. Please note, joining the Work-Study waitlist does not guarantee a Work-Study award. 

The Work-Study waitlist has closed for the 2023-2024 academic year. Please continue to monitor our website for the 2024-2025 waitlist.


  Placement Process


All Federal Work-Study placement will end on Monday, April 1st 2024, for the 2023-2024 academic year.  All correspondences to qcworkstudy@qc.cuny.edu requesting work-study for the Spring 2024 semester must be received no later than Wednesday, March 20th, 2024

Note: Placement and Federal Work-Study awarding has not begun for the 2024-2025 academic year.  Please monitor the Financial Aid website for upcoming updates on Work-Study for 2024-2025.


Instructions for On-Campus Placement

Once you have accepted your Work-Study award, an email will be sent explaining the process and documents that are required. For On – Campus job placement, job postings will be sent along with the email.

Instructions for Off-Campus Placement

If you are interested in working off campus through the Federal Work-Study program, you must have an existing Work-Study award for the current academic year. Students will not be awarded solely based on the submission of the Work Study Internship Application. 

Contact us at QCWorkStudy@qc.cuny.edu to view the CUNY Off-Campus job posting or if your are interested in working through the Public Service Corps, you must complete the Work Study Internship Application. Public Service Corps (PSC) is a paid internship that utilizes your Federal Work-Study grant. An application must be completed with your resume attached, and it must be submitted to the Office Financial Aid Services. PSC salary is $16 hourly for both Undergraduate and Graduate students.