This guide is designed for use by both University managers and supervisors who hire and/or supervise students who work in Federal Work Study and/or general student employment positions. Answers to various questions concerning policies, procedures, supervisor responsibilities and student responsibilities are provided for the user in this guide.
Missouri State University offers two distinct employment opportunities for students: the Federal Work Study Program and general student employment. The similarities and differences in policies and procedures for these programs are also contained in this guide.
The University supports consistent application of student personnel policies and procedures throughout campus. The University's student payroll program applies the principle of "equal pay for equal work" through placement of positions with similar duties and responsibilities in the same classification and pay range.
It is the responsibility of University administrators, supervisors and managers to determine, in accordance with the policies as outlined herein, the specific pay category for student employees based on the job duties performed, and to determine the proper compensation for these student employees within the hiring ranges established for the pay category they hold based on internal equity and on education and experience. The placement of a student into a pay category is based on the duties performed by the student employee, not the educational level of the student at the University.
A student employee is a part-time hourly employee who is concurrently enrolled at Missouri State University with the primary goal of achieving a degree. Thus, the employment is interim or temporary in nature and is incidental to the pursuit of an academic program.
Students should not perform any work or subsequently be paid for work performed before all steps in the hiring process have been completed.
In order for a student to qualify for Student Employment, the following criteria must be met:
- During the regular school year, the student must be enrolled in at least six (6) credit hours for the semester in which the student is employed.
See Section IV for International Students eligibility requirements
EXCEPTION: Students enrolled in only the number of credit hours required to graduate can be considered half-time students if they are in their last semester of course work. These students would be eligible for student employment with written verification from the Degree Check Office (for undergraduate students) or the Graduate Office (for graduate students) stating their reduced course load will complete graduation requirements. This exemption would be applicable for one semester and applies only to continued employment of the previous semester.
- For summer, the student must be enrolled for three (3) credit hours. Students not enrolled in summer classes must have been enrolled for at least six (6) credit hours in the spring and pre-registered for at least six (6) credit hours for the upcoming fall semester.
EXCEPTION: In order to work during the summer, work study students must be awarded summer work study through Financial Aid and be enrolled in a minimum of three (3) credit hours.
- To work between semesters, a student employee must be pre-registered for a minimum of six (6) credit hours the upcoming semester.
- Students new to the University or those students ineligible for student employment the previous semester may not begin in a student position until the first day of the new semester. Student employees must continue to be enrolled for the appropriate number of credit hours in order to be eligible for continuation of employment in a student position.
Any student employee who drops below the applicable minimum semester hours of enrollment, withdraws or is suspended is not eligible to work as a student employee. Periodic reviews will be done throughout each semester to check for eligibility of student workers. Departments will be notified when violations are found. If the individual no longer qualifies for student employment and if the department wishes to continue the person as an employee, they may pursue, in accordance with the Staff Employee Handbook, employment in a staff position. In most cases, this is a temporary staff position cleared through Human Resources.
- A student employee who is not returning to the University the following semester must terminate employment by the LAST DAY OF FINALS.
- All student employees must be degree seeking.
- Students on academic probation (GPA less than 2.00 cumulative and semester) or suspension cannot be employed unless an appeal for an exception is approved by Student Employment. Appeal forms can be obtained at Student Employment Services. Work Study students on academic probation must appeal through the Financial Aid Office.
- Students with Graduate Assistantships must have written approval from the Graduate Office for working in addition to their assistantship. The Only exception that is allowed is over Spring Break since it is a full week. Fall Break, Thanksgiving Holiday, President’s Day, Martin Luther King B-Day, Spring Holiday, or 4th of July are not exceptions.
Working in between the semester appointment periods is permitted because it is between appointment periods. Graduate Assistants may work as student employees the days between the last day of a Fall appointment period (Fall Commencement) and the first day of the Spring appointment period (the Monday before Spring semester begins). International students can legally only work a maximum of 20 hours a week and since the university work week runs Monday-Sunday, then International students who are G.A.s cannot start working as a student employee until the Monday after commencement, 20 Dec., since they would have already worked 20 hours for the work week of 13 (Mon) – 20 (Sun) Dec.
If a Graduate Assistant works as a G.A. and a student employee during the same work week and the total number of hours worked are more than 40 hours, the student must submit their approved paper G.A. time sheet to Payroll to be paid the proper overtime.
- Student athletes, whether receiving a scholarship or not, must complete required NCAA paperwork in the Compliance Office PRIOR to beginning any employment.
Note: Eligibility requirements for student employment are separate from criteria required for Social Security tax-exempt status. See Section VIII, C.
International students are subject to domestic student requirements as well as U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) regulations. Per USCIS, the primary purpose of a student visa status is to attend school. Employment in general is restricted. However, international students possessing an F-1 or J-1 visa may be employed through Student Employment, although they are subject to certain regulations, procedures and restrictions per immigration law. These should be followed not only to ensure students do not violate their status as a legal alien, but also, to ensure the University is not responsible for employing an illegal alien. Additionally, an international student cannot displace a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. This means that an on-campus employer cannot remove a U.S. student employee in order to hire a foreign student employee.
- International students must maintain their immigration status in order to work on campus. This includes carrying a full-time course of study during the academic year, keeping their passport valid, unless exempt from the passport requirement (i.e. Canada), keeping immigration status documents such as I-20 or DS-2019 current, and limiting work to no more than 20 hours a week.
- Undergraduate students are required to maintain a minimum of 12 credit hours enrollment Graduate students are required to maintain a minimum of nine (9) credit hours or six (6) credit hours for those students holding teaching or research assistantships. International students are not required to attend summer sessions.
However, in order to work during summer they must have been enrolled for at least 12 credit hours in the previous spring and be pre-registered for at least 12 credit hours for the upcoming fall semester. International graduate student employees must have been enrolled for at least nine (9) credit hours in the previous spring and be pre-registered in at least nine (9) credit hours in the upcoming fall semester. Students from tax treaty countries will lose treaty benefits if they are enrolled in less than full-time status or do not remain enrolled in full-time status subject to the language of the Student Article of the respective tax treaty.
- International students who meet Missouri State enrollment requirements, but do not meet (USCIS) full-time enrollment requirements, must have proper authorization from the Designated School Official (DSO) in the International Services office approving the under enrolled status for the purposes of USCIS. Note: International students from Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, or South Korea who were in the United States in student status on or prior to June10, 1998 may be eligible to carry less than full-time status. These students should obtain the Designated School Official's approval signature for their I-20 PRIOR to their interview with the International Payroll Specialist.
- For summer, international students must be pre-registered in full-time status for the fall semester.
- Valid passports are a requirement for maintaining immigration status. Since Missouri State requires international students to maintain status as an eligibility requirement for on campus work through Student Employment, international students will be required to keep their passports valid at all times. If a passport needs to be mailed to an embassy for renewal, the student should mail it registered mail with a return receipt requested. The receipt can be used as verification that the passport renewal is in progress.
- F-1 and J-1 students are generally authorized to work for the "duration of their status". The duration of an F-1 student's status is determined by the expiration date of the I-20 or the end of the student's studies, whichever is the earliest date. J-1 students must be given permission to work by the Program Sponsor (see section B below) and are authorized to work until the date specified by the Responsible Officer. This date generally matches the end date of the DS-2019, which also determines the duration of the J-1 student's status.
Since the I-20 and the DS-2019 documents verify student status and generally show work authorization, these documents must be kept current. The I-20 is updated and extended through the International Services Office, and the DS-2019 document is updated and extended through the Program Sponsor. Any student working with an expired I-20 or DS-2019 document jeopardizes his/her status and is no longer authorized for employment. Until a new form is on file in the Payroll Office, the student will be removed from payroll.
- International students can work up to a total of 20 hours per week university-wide while school is in session, and full-time during school breaks and vacations, including summer. Working more than 20 hours a week while school is in session jeopardizes the student's status. Students who have worked more than 20 hours a week will be removed from payroll until the Designated School Officer has notified the Payroll Office that the situation has been addressed. It will be the student's responsibility to inform the hiring department if they are also working for more than one department or any of the on- campus vendors, such as University or Plaster Student Union food services. Note: International students from Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, or South Korea who were in the United States in student status on or prior to June 10, 1998 may be eligible to work more than 20 hours a week. These students should obtain the Designated School Official's approval signature for their I-20 PRIOR to their interview with the International Payroll Specialist.
Both the student and Missouri State can be subject to penalties associated with international students working who are in violation of status. Any student who is in violation of status is, therefore, ineligible to work until the situation has been addressed. International students who deviate from any of the above requirements will be expected to address the situation through the Designated School Official or Responsible Officer in the International Services Offices.
- International students in J-1 exchange visitor status must obtain written authorization for employment. The Responsible Officer of the exchange visitor program sponsor grants permission to work. If Missouri State is the sponsor, permission to work is granted through the International Services Office.
- International students must have a valid Social Security number (SSN). Numbers beginning with "899" or "900" are not valid for employment purposes. If the student does not have a valid SSN, he/she must apply for a Social Security card. This application is available in the Office of International Services and the Payroll Department.
- International students should not attempt to apply in person at the Social Security Office. The application should be turned in to the International Services Office with copies of their passport, visa, I-94 and I-20 or DS-2019. An international student's University records and BearPass Card are required to be changed to reflect the new social security number prior to working.
- New international students are required to meet with the International Payroll Specialist in the Payroll Office prior to the beginning of his/her employment as part of the Student Employment Clearance Process. International students previously cleared for another department do not need to meet with the International Payroll Specialist.
- Contact the International Payroll Specialist at InternationalPayroll@missouristate.edu to obtain a username and password for the on-line information form and receive a copy of the I-9 form. The on-line information form is used for determining the international student's tax status.
- When the student has completed the on-line information form and I-9, and appointment will be scheduled to meet with the International Payroll Specialist.
- The student should be prepared to bring to his/her appointment: passport, I-20 or DS-2019 with sponsor's employment authorization letter, I-94, social security card and any other pertinent immigration documentation.
- The W-4, Direct Deposit Form and any other tax documents will be completed during the interview with the International Payroll Specialist.
- Payroll/Taxation Issues
- International students who plan to leave the United States prior to receiving his/her last pay should notify the International Payroll Specialist or Payroll Manager in the Payroll Office, and must keep their bank accounts open. There will be no special pay arrangements to receive pay before leaving the country. In most cases this will apply to international students who are in the foreign exchange program and are in the U.S. for only a semester or two. Administrators may want to work with the student in terms of scheduling in the event that it would not be feasible for the student to leave his/her bank account open.
- International students should see the International Payroll Specialist for any changes to the W-4 address. Most international students have a different tax status than a U.S. citizen which dictates the appropriate way to complete the form. Completing a new W-4 with changes in the Payroll Office will help ensure that the form is correctly completed.
- International students whose tax status is Non-Resident Alien is not allowed to claim exempt on their W-4.
- International students are generally exempt from social security depending upon their tax status. Resident Aliens will be subject to the domestic student rule as stated in the Social Security tax section. Any international student NOT in F-1, J-1, Q-1 or M-1 visa status will be subject to the domestic student rule.
- International students are not eligible for the federal work study program.
In order to reflect changes in the state minimum wage and subsequent CPI percentage changes each year, the Student Employee Pay Categories will be revised and become effective January 1 each year.
The goal of this policy is to help assure equity and continuity across campus in setting student employee pay levels. It is up to the department head to recommend, based on job duties and responsibilities, a student employee’s pay category and range. Once the category and range have been determined, hourly wage rates may be established for student workers.
The department head who wishes to pay a student at a Category III level will complete the Clearance Form and indicate in the Comment Section, memo or email, the responsibilities and job duties to justify the pay rate of the Category III position.
Justifications must be based on job duties or market competition only and not, for example, length of service. Student Employment will either approve the rate or contact the Department Head for clarification.
All payroll changes or raises are effective the first day of the next pay period. These are increases which may be awarded at the discretion of each department. However, it is not intended for these category and level increases to be granted automatically. Students are eligible for category and range increases (raises) once per academic year depending on abilities. Raises may be granted for more than one category and range at a time. Actual changes in job responsibilities, which require a change in job category, are not considered an annual raise. A reduction in pay can be made at the discretion of a department head. A change in job responsibilities or reduction in pay will not prevent a subsequent raise from being granted during the same year.
Pay rate increases for budget paid students are submitted by clearance form. To raise a work study student’s wages, directly contact the Financial Aid Technician for Work Study in Student Employment Services.
Students are allowed to work in more than one department at a time with different rates of pay depending on the individual department job responsibilities and qualifications. Students may be paid at only one rate of pay per department.
Student Employment, in conjunction with Financial Services, reserves the right to review departmental application of pay rates within the categories for campus uniformity. Budget student employees and work study student employees MUST be paid the same rate if they are performing the same job.
Category I job duties require little or no previous experience; few specific skills are required; the necessary skills may be learned "on the job" within a short time; the work is usually routine in nature; depending on the duties assigned and skills of the student, some previous training or experience may be needed. The position may or may not be closely supervised.
$7.65 - $8.00
Category II job duties require a high level of responsibility, training, experience, and competence; the student receives only general supervision/direction.
$8.01 - $8.51
Category III student positions require job duties and skills determined to be above the range established in Category II.
$8.52 and above need special approval
Category III requires a memo, email, or Comment Section justification which includes duties performed and expertise needed for the pay rate from the department head to Student Employment. Student Employment will either approve the rate or contact the department head for clarification.
Category I of the new pay ranges will include the vast majority of student job titles. Beginning pay may be set at any point within the category and increases may be in variable amounts, not necessarily in 25 cent increments. Raises should be given only once a year unless a student moves from one category to a new higher category.
*Lower amounts within ranges are suggested starting salaries. Students may change pay categories when they change jobs on campus or within a department which entails the next level of requirements, or are given a higher level of responsibility after receiving more training and experience in their current position.
Supervisors of student employees play a significant role in their development, not only in assisting them in becoming responsible workers and acquiring the related skills, but also in their personal adjustment and growth. Supervising student workers can indeed be a most rewarding experience.
- Orient the new employee- After a student is hired it is advisable to set aside time to orient the student to the department. The following topics should be included:
- Staff introductions and tour of the office
- Work schedule and variations for holidays and exam periods
- Job responsibilities and related performance standards
- Procedures for recording and submitting hours worked
- Payroll deadlines and paycheck distribution
- Security and confidentiality policies
- Supervisory role: who is the student's supervisor?
On basic procedures, student training modules are available at http://apps.missouristate.edu/studentemp/emptrain/ for new employees.
- Communicate expectations and explain the student's role- Provide a written job description and communicate job standards and expectations.
- Train student employee- Take time to train your new employee in the particular skills necessary to perform the job. This may include time management, phone skills, quality service practices, and the handling of difficult situations.
- Give feedback- Student employees, like all employees, benefit from consistent and appropriate feedback on job performance, provided that it is communicated in a positive spirit.
- Provide a workspace- Student employees need a workspace that is safe and comfortable.
- Be fair but flexible- Supervisors who are too lenient are not doing students any favors. Work study and on-campus jobs are "real jobs." Though it is important to have high standards on the job, it is also important to understand that student employees are students first and employees second.
- Treat student employees in accord with their rights- Student employees have the same rights as all employees per university regulations.
- What motivates student employees?
- Recognition (from supervisors, peers, Student Employee of the Year Award)
- Experiences to add to resume
- Building transferable career skills
- Flexible schedule
- Interaction with other students/faculty/staff/visitors
- Relaxed work environment
- Opportunities to take initiative
- Being busy at work
- Networking opportunities
- Convenience of on-campus position
- Opportunities for leadership and responsibility
- Learning time management
- Improving communication skills
- Sense of pride and accomplishment
- Work title
- Knowing that staff depends on them/crucial to operation of office
- Investing time and energy to build skills
- Food and fun
Employment with the University is "at will" and may be terminated at any time. The University, at its discretion, may utilize progressive disciplinary procedures in circumstances determined appropriate as outlined below.
Student employees who do not perform work to standard or who violate rules, regulations or policies of the University may be disciplined according to the seriousness or the repetition of the violation. Formal disciplinary steps are not usually required for dismissal of probationary, temporary, or part-time employees.
Certain actions can cause employees to be disciplined, including (but not limited to) the following:
- Inefficiency, incompetency, or inability in the performance of duties;
- Refusal to obey directions or accept assignments;
- Careless workmanship or negligence in the performance of duties;
- Sleeping, loitering or loafing during working hours;
- Conducting personal business on the job;
- Continual tardiness or chronic absenteeism; failure to notify supervisor of absence;
- Excessive, unnecessary or unauthorized use of University supplies, materials or equipment, particularly for personal purposes;
- Unauthorized use or misuse of all computer systems, equipment, and software;
- Careless, negligent or improper use of University property, including official vehicles;
- Dishonesty, including falsifying employment application or work records or other University work records; clocking in/out for another student worker or falsifying time cards.
- Conviction of a criminal act or illegal activity reasonably related to conduct relevant to the workplace;
- Violating the University's nondiscrimination and/or sexual harassment policy;
- Violating University rules, policies or regulations or departmental work rules;
- Unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, or use of controlled substances on University property or as part of University activities;
- Possession, use, or distribution of alcohol on University property. The possession, use, or distribution of alcohol in conjunction with University activities not on university property shall be in compliance with applicable federal laws, state laws, and local ordinances;
- Reporting to work under the influence of drugs or alcohol; refusal to consent to drug or alcohol testing;
- Fighting or using obscene, abusive, or threatening language or gestures;
- Unauthorized possession of ammunition, firearms, explosive weapons, other weapons as defined in Missouri Revised Statutes Section 571.010 (2), (6), (10), (11), (13), (17) and (18) on University premises or while on University business. Authorization to possess such items on University property may be granted by the Director of Safety and Transportation or his/her designee.
- Disorderly or immoral conduct on the University premises;
- Disregarding safety and/or security regulations; smoking where/when prohibited;
- "Horseplay" which endangers self or other employees;
- Excessive or unauthorized use of telephones;
- Leaving the job during working hours without permission;
- Unauthorized release of confidential information from official records;
- Gambling during working hours;
- Misconduct off duty of such a nature as to reflect discredit on or cause embarrassment to the University or to the State.
This grievance procedure is designed to address complaints and disputes between student employees and the departments in which they work, including working relationships, working conditions, employment practices or differences in interpretation of policies. Student employees who believe they have a legitimate grievance may undertake the following procedure in order to rectify the matter.
- STEP 1 - Immediate Supervisor
Discussion of the problem with the immediate supervisor is encouraged as a first step with the objective of resolving the matter informally. The majority of disputes, complaints, or misunderstandings can be resolved at this point. Student employees should bring their grievances to the attention of the supervisor in a timely manner in order to resolve them as quickly as possible. Generally, in order for a grievance to be timely, it must be presented within ten (10) business days of occurrence. There may be situations that student employees feel cannot be discussed with their immediate supervisor. In these instances, student employees are encouraged to request a meeting with their department head or administrator.
- STEP 2 - Appeal to the Department Head or Major Administrator
If the problem is not resolved within a short period of time after discussion with the supervisor, then the student employee may formalize the grievance in writing and present it to the Department Head or Administrator. The student employee should file the written grievance within ten (10) business days after presentation of the grievance to the supervisor, if resolution has not occurred within that time period. In an effort to resolve the problem, the Department Head or Administrator will consider the facts, conduct an investigation, and may give the student employee the opportunity to present the case orally. The Department Head or Administrator may affirm, reverse or modify the supervisor's decision, and will notify the student employee of the decision in writing within ten (10) business days after receiving the appeal.
- STEP 3 - Appeal to the Vice President
If a student employee is not satisfied with the decision of the Department Head or Administrator, he/she may appeal to the appropriate Vice-President within five (5) business days after receiving that decision. The appeal must be in writing and must include all of the information included in the initial grievance and subsequent appeals, all the decisions related thereto, and any other pertinent information the student employee may wish to submit. The appeal must be signed and dated. The Vice President will investigate the grievance and will give the student employee the right to present the case orally. The Vice President has the option of appointing a three-member panel from the University community to also hear the case and review the actions to ensure that University procedures have been followed and due process afforded to the student employee. The Vice President may affirm, reverse, or modify the previous decision in writing within ten (10) business days after receiving the appeal.
- STEP 4 - Appeal to the President
If a student employee is not satisfied with the decision rendered at Step 3 of the grievance procedure, he/she may appeal to the President within five (5) business days after receiving that decision. The appeal must be in writing and will include all of the information included in the initial grievance and subsequent appeals, all decisions related thereto, and any other pertinent information the student employee may wish to submit. The appeal must be signed and dated.
The President will initiate an investigation into the matter and may give the student employee the right to present his/her case orally. The President may affirm, reverse, or modify the previous decision and will, within a reasonable time, notify the employee of the decision in writing.