By Tiffany Rose Miller
On Jan. 1, 2018, the pay rate for on campus student work study positions increased from $10 to $11 per hour. The Federal Work-Study (FWS) program is a form of financial assistance offered by the federal government to students through part-time employment at their colleges. At LIU Post, there are a variety of on-campus jobs available for students eligible for financial aid.
Students interested in receiving federal work-study must complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application to apply for financial aid and indicate an interest in the work-study program.
Ilkania Maldonado, the director of enrollment services, has managed LIU Post’s financial aid department for two years. She has witnessed how beneficial this program is to students of all majors. “I love
it because the students have an opportunity to grow personally and professionally, fulfilling administrative duties while also staying on top of personal academic responsibilities, which allows them to be more prepared for the real world,” she said. Most of the students working in Maldonado’s office are in the work-study program. She ensures all students in her office have satisfactory academic performance while employed. Maldonado has a strong initiative, “school first, work second.” Federal mandates require that students maintain at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA all semesters to qualify for and stay in work study.
Students have the option of having their earnings paid into their bank account via direct deposit or sent to LIU to pay for charges such as tuition, fees, room and board.
Monica Kurup, a senior computer science major, has been in the work study program at LIU Post, working in the academic advisement and financial aid office for the past two years. “I love my job; I love that we received an increase and I love meeting new people while assisting them with any issues they may have,” she said. Kurup uses her earnings from work-study to pay her tuition; without that opportunity, she would have to take out private loans to pay for school. According to The Institute for College Access & Success, 71 percent of all students graduating from four-year colleges, or about 1.3 million students, graduate with some form of student loan debt.
Some students believe that the work study program should be available to all interested students, not just students receiving financial aid. “I truly don’t think it’s fair that work study is only available to students who qualify for aid; just because your tuition is paid, doesn’t mean you don’t need the extra money,” Sydney Duffy, a junior political science major, said. Maldonado responded that students who are not eligible for financial aid can still work in-campus jobs, through budget positions. “Our university gives the opportunities for all students to earn money in between classes; we have budget positions throughout campus where students who don’t qualify for federal work-study can still work at stores in Hillwood, faculty offices, etc., where they can earn money paid for directly from the university budget”.
Yessica Guevara, a senior criminal justice major, works in the financial aid office. “The most important part of my job is helping students like me get the aid they deserve; I love helping people during their time in need. The increase helped me and my family a lot,” she said. She too uses her earnings to help off set the cost of private school tuition.
Robert Doran, a senior digital game design major, has a different view on his work study job in the enrollment services office “I think it’s so intriguing so see how the university operates, how objectives are met, and how far the university goes to help its student financially.” Doran uses his earnings to off set the cost of living expenses like gas, food and personal bills.
The financial aid office is located at Enrollment Services in Kumble Hall;516-299-2323; email@example.com.
The office hours are Monday to Thursday: 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Friday: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.