Systems and Procedures
A Division of The Corporate Controller's Office

Procedure FA2001 - On-Campus College Work-Study Program

Enrollment Management

Policy Steward facilitating procedure: Executive Director, Student Aid

Table of Contents:


The Office of Student Aid coordinates most forms of student aid to students, including scholarships, grants, loans and college work study. The U.S. Department of Education Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA on the Web) serves as the single application for financial aid at Penn State. Student who complete the aid application process are considered for all federal, state, and University student financial aid programs.

The University participates in the Federal Work Study (FWS) Program to stimulate and promote part-time employment for students with demonstrated financial need. A central Administrative Fund provide 15%, the participating University department provides 10%, and the Federal Government provides 75% of the funds used to pay the students working approved FWS jobs. All funds appropriated by the Federal Government for the FWS Program flow through University Fund 12300.

The Office of Student Aid coordinates this program with the various colleges and departments by approving and providing a listing of FWS positions, and making awards to eligible students. In 1993, the job proposal and hiring processes were automated, utilizing the capabilities of the Integrated Student Information System (ISIS) .

This procedure document the employment, payroll, reconciliation and reporting functions utilized in administering the FWS Program at Penn State.



All students who indicate they are interested in work programs when completing their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on the Web are considered for Work-Study for fall and spring semesters.

(NOTE: For consideration for the summer FWS program, continuing students must complete the Summer Work-Study request on eLion ).

New students approved to receive a FWS award are notified by Student Financial Aid Award Notification ( Exhibit "A" ), prepared by the Office of Student Aid. Continuing students approved to receive a FWS award are sent an email informing them to check their eLion Student Aid Summary application.


All departments participating in the FWS Program must complete the Job Proposal Screen AFEJ ( Exhibit "B" ) on ISIS . Completion of this screen enables departments to establish positions in their area. AFEJ will be completed in accordance with the Federal Work-Study Manual. Once all the required information has been entered, a pop-up "Certification Window" will appear explaining the terms involved in employing a student in the work-study program. The participating department MUST agree to these terms before they may hire a student into the position being created. They system will ask the department representative completing AFEJ if they concur with the terms and conditions lists, to which a "Y" or "N" must be entered. Entry of a "Y" signifies that the department has agreed to the terms of work-study program, at which time the position is immediately approved and a position number assigned. (Entry of a "N" halts the process.) Positions must be reviewed and renewed annually, as just described.

Once AFEJ has been completed and a position number has been assigned, a department may begin interviewing interested students who have received a FWS award. Once an eligible student has been selected, the department must complete the Student Employment Update Screen, AFEE ( Exhibit "C" ) in accordance with the Federal Work-Study Manual. The appropriate edit checks have been built into this screen to monitor the information being keyed, confirm the student's work-study eligibility/award amount, etc. Once the required data has been successfully entered/accepted on ISIS , a student may begin to work immediately.


Students participating in the FWS Program are paid on the biweekly payroll. Participating departments must obtain a completed W-4 or W-4E form (as applicable), Employment Eligibility Verification (I-9), and Salary Deposit Request Form from the student, then submit them to the appropriate offices prior to initiating payroll processing. Otherwise, the Integrated Business Information System (IBIS) will not accept/process the departments request for payment. The employing FWS department is responsible for establishing a procedure for recording hours worked. Supervisors are responsible for verifying hours worked by each student. FWS hours will be submitted for payment by completing the IBIS Wage Time-card Form (WAGC), in according with the instructions specified in the IBIS Online Documentation Section of the Administrative Information Systems website, indicating in the appropriate field of the WAGC that the individual is a Work-Study student.

Once all support documentation has been obtained and department processing has been correctly completed, the WAGC will be processed through IBIS, following the same procedure as that followed for regular (non work-study) wage payroll employee. This processing will result in the following reports and events:

  1. Work-Study Report ( Exhibit "D" ), showing:
    1. Pay Date. (Pay Date coincides with the Report Date)
    2. The respective budgets charged
    3. Fund charged
    4. Student Name and Number
    5. The Hourly Rate paid
    6. Total Wages earned this pay period

    Both the Office of Student Loans and Scholarships and the Office of Student Aid have access to this report through the eDocument Distribution System (EDDs).

  2. Biweekly Work-Study Report ( Exhibit "E" ), showing:
    1. Student Name and Number
    2. Federal College Work-Study Award (allocation) by Fall/Spring Semesters or Summer Sessions
    3. Fall/Spring or Summer Earnings
    4. The balance fo the allocation remaining after the earnings are applied
    5. Asterisks will appear after the remaining balance of allocation is a student is within $350 of earning their total allocation. (See "Notification Procedures When Student Approaches Award Limit," below for additional information.)

    This report is available on the eDocument Distribution System (EDDs).

  3. Payroll Vouchers ( Exhibit "F" ), showing;
    1. Name and Number of the department for which the student worked
    2. Funds paying for the respective share of FWS wages
    3. Student Name, Number, Rate, Hours Worked, and Earnings for this period
    4. Distribution of wages by source

    A Payroll Voucher is generated for each department participating in FWS. (A separate voucher is produced for Federal Work-Study because of the "W" code added to the fund number when completing the WAGC). Each voucher should the 75/15/10 "split" amounts for the Federal (06-088-23, Fund 12300), Central Administrative (06-088-23, Fund 10010), and University department (xx-xxx-xx, Fund xxxxx) portions of the particular payroll period. All copies are forwarded to Payroll, who subsequently distributes them to each participating department.

  4. Auxiliary Enterprises Fringe Benefits Report ( Exhibit "G" )
  5. This listing shows the total monies earned via salaries and wage payroll in each auxiliary budget area for each month. Federal Work-Study earnings are included in the "wage" totals. This report becomes support for a Journal Voucher that is prepared by Accounting Operations, charging the general funds of the Auxiliary Enterprise area the current rate for fringe benefits for 100% of the salary and wag payroll wages, and 10% of the Federal Work-Study wages, paid from their area. If desired by participating departments, the FWS wage payroll totals can be derived by pulling their payroll vouchers for the corresponding period(s) and comparing them to that month's Fringe Benefits Report.

  6. Budget Reports - Participating Departments (not exhibited)
  7. Each department participating in the FWS Program can access its own Budget Report through the "ICAG" function in IBIS, reflecting the portion of work-study monies paid, adjustments (as applicable), etc., from their budget.

  8. Budget Reports - Office of Student Aid, Office of Student Loans and Scholarships (not exhibited).
  9. The Office of Student Aid and the Office of Student Loans and Scholarships access Budget Reports through the "ICAG" function in IBIS for Budget 06-088-23, Funds 10010 and 12300 for reporting, filing, and reconciliation purposes (as applicable to their respective areas of responsibility).

  10. Pay for student will be directly deposited into the student's bank account. If a student does not have direct deposit, the student's check will be delivered to the student's department on record for standard distribution.


Once a student has earned their authorized award amount, employment cannot continue to be subsidized through the FWS Program. Students within $350.00 of their award limit will have an asterisk by the name of the Biweekly Work-Study Report ( Exhibit "E" ). The Office of Student Aid will contact these students via email, notifying them that the amount of wages earned is approaching their award limit. The department employing the student will be copied on the email as well. These emails will indicate the remaining balance on the student's work-study award, and what steps must be taken to prevent the student from exceeding their award amount.


To facilitate accountability to the Federal government for the funds appropriated, the Office of Student Loans and Scholarships is responsible for maintaining and monitoring the FWS activity occurring in Fund 12300. To accomplish this, the monthly budget reports for the fund are accessed and reviewed. In particular, entries involving Payroll Transfers are examined and researched to determine/insure that the entry of these adjustments is both accurate and appropriate. Any inaccuracies discovered will be brought to the attention of the originating department, who will rectify them via completion of a Journal Voucher.


Each month, the Office of Student Loans and Scholarships emails Research Accounting with the dollar amount of money expended on FWS for that month. Per the Letter of Credit requirements established with the Department of Education for FWS, Research Accounting will then report/record this total in the appropriate web form to the Department of Education's website, entering the dollar total to be transferred.

The requested amount is then "drawn down" from the Department of Education via electronic funds transfer to the applicable bank account. Research Accounting records this transaction by processing a Report of Cash Receipts (ROCR) in accordance with the instructions specified in the IBIS Online Documentation section of the Administrative Information Systems website .


The Financial Officer is responsible for ensuring that procedures pertaining to the accountability and safeguarding of all cash receipts, cash funds, and other assets are established and followed in accordance with approved University policies and procedures. Regular audits relating to advances, cash, travel, equipment accountability, and other expenditures provide a means to protect University assets. The Financial Officer is responsible for working with Internal Audit when audits are being performed in the administrative area.


Record retention must be managed in accordance with Policy AD35 - University Archives and Records Management , and records schedules approved by the Records Management Advisory Committee, Office of General Counsel, and Office of the President. These retention requirements are the University's retention criteria, either derived or based upon federal, state, and local statute or regulations, industry standards, and business needs. Retention beyond recommended time periods require justifiable reasons and warrant review by the Records Management Officer or designee. All documents must be maintained in such a manner so as to provide ease of access for review, and to provide a suitable audit trail for all transactions.

Upon expiration of a stated period of time, documents must be discarded and/or destroyed, unless permission is granted by Records Management Officer or designee to retain the records. Archival records created more than 20 years prior to the current date must be reviewed before destruction. Units should also contact the University Archivist before discarding any document which may be of permanent or historical value to the University. To safeguard the privacy of individuals, documents that contain salary information, personally identifiable information (PII), or student records must also be shredded. See Policy AD53 - Privacy Policy and AD22 - Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act for additional information regarding privacy and the protection of an individual's personal information. For documents that must be shredded, departments may arrange for Blue Bag service by contacting the Blue/White Shredding Program of the Office of Physical Plant. Exceptions to the practice are as follows:

Additional questions may be directed to the University Archivist or the Records Management Officer.



For questions, additional detail, or to request changes to this procedures, please contact the Executive Director, Student Aid


Procedure Status:

Date Approved: December 19, 2007

Most recent changes:

Revision History: