Financial Aid

What is State Work Study?

The State Work Study program helps Washington students with financial need to earn money for college while gaining work experience in jobs related to their academic and career goals. Students at PLU are hired by off campus employers who are then reimbursed 30% – 60% of the student wages (depending on the type of employer) by the state work study program funds.

Who is eligible?

In order to obtain State Work Study you must:

  • Be a Washington state resident.
  • Have state work study as part of your aid package.  Students securing on-campus employment may have their State Work Study award converted to the on-campus federal work study program.
  • State work study awarded for fall or spring semester requires at least half-time enrollment and student must maintain satisfactory academic progress.
  • Work a maximum of 19 hours per week while enrolled at least half time.  After May 30, 2016, students may work up to 40 hours per week during the summer term when enrolled less than half time.  To be eligible to work 40 hours per week, students must be registered for the following fall semester.
  • Work with your employer to track your earnings so that they do not exceed the amount you have been awarded.
How do you apply?

To be considered for Work Study you must first submit a FAFSA (remember to include PLU’s school code 003785). Upon receiving your FAFSA information from the federal government, PLU will compile a financial aid award. If you are awarded Work Study then complete the following:

  • Find a job that interests you within the State Work Study listing. Looking for a student job?
  • Download a State Work Study Referral/Agreement Form from the Office of Student Employment website.
  • Complete STEP1a with the Financial Aid Office; Completed STEP1b with your student information.
  • Apply for the job! Counselors at Student Employment and Career Connections will work with you if you have questions about applications, cover letters, and resumes.  To schedule an appointment with Student Employment or Career Connections, please call 253-535-7459.
  • Bring your referral with you to the State Work Study employer and have them complete STEP2, Employer Information, and STEP3, Award Request.
  • Return the Referral to the Student Employment Center in Ramstad. This will complete the processing of your application, including adjusting award amounts to fit with your employer’s request, if necessary.
  • Make sure you and your employer return your State Work Study Time sheet at the end of every month and that all the information is current and accurate. Return time sheets to the Student Employment Center.
  • Continue to work with your employer to track your earnings so that they do not exceed the amount you have been awarded.
How much will you make and are there other benefits?

Your earning potential is dictated by the 19 hours per week limit while enrolled in school, the hourly wage paid by your employer and the amount of your eligibility, based on your FAFSA information.  Beginning May 30, 2016, students may work up to 40 hours per week during periods of non-enrollment or when enrolled less than half time.  In 2015-16, students averaged $4,959 in earnings, with the highest amount earned at $14,396 for the year (including full-time summer employment), $8,870 for fall & spring semesters.  Benefits of participation in the State work study program beyond a pay check include:

  • Offer positions that typically provide higher compensation than on-campus employment.
  • Offer positions that typically provide more “real world” work opportunities that test academic learning and help confirm future career interest.
  • Offer the potential for making a bigger impact in terms of post-graduation resume’ and reference strength/competitiveness.
  • Offer a wider variety of employers, industries, and job duties within the local communities.
  • Offer greater potential for post-graduation employment with the same employer.