Working to Contribute to Education Costs

Though borrowing to fund your education is a reality for many families, working and contributing financially to your educational investment is a key to successful completion of your degree. Not only do you help offset some of the expenses of your education and reduce your reliance on loans, but you earn vaulable opportunities to add to your resume. National surveys of employers indicate that recent graduates who have worked through college are more attractive to hire.

The Federal Work-Study program is funded by both the Department of Education and UNE, and offers opportunities for on-campus, part-time employment to undergraduate students demonstrating financial need. Funds are annually recalculated and awarded as part of your financial aid package. Your work-study earnings are paid to you directly and are not deducted from your bill. An additional advantage to working on campus is the enrichment of your college and practical work experience. Please obtain an Authorization Form from our office before beginning work.

UNE Federal Work-Study Process

For Students

Step 1: Confirm Federal Work-Study (FWS) eligibility

To do this:

  • Log in to U-Online 
  • Select Student Financial Services > Award > Award by Aid Year > 20XX-20XX
  • Review Accept Award Offer tab 
Step 2: Complete all required new hire forms

These forms include:

  • Federal W-4 Form
  • State of Maine W-4 Form (required regardless of your home state) 
  • UNE Confidentiality Agreement Form
  • Federal I-9 Form which requires in-person review of original forms of ID.

These forms are only required to be completed once. If you have previously done then, please proceed to Step 3. 

Step 3: Enroll in direct deposit
  • This is done entirely online through U-Online
  • Delay in enrollment can result in delay in receipt of paychecks
  • Once enrolled, you will not need to re-enroll again unless your banking information changes
Step 4: Review and apply for available positions through your Handshake account

If you do not have access to Handshake and/or experience technical difficulties logging in, please call Career Services at (207) 602-2096 or email

Step 5: Work with your hiring supervisor(s) to complete the authorization process
Step 6: As you work, report hours on timesheet through the web-time entry (WTE) process through U-Online
  • Timesheets must be submitted in accordance with the annual payroll schedule available through U-Online
  • Email Payroll with any questions about or issues with the WTE process 
Step 7: Continuously monitor your earnings to ensure you do not exceed your total annual FWS award

Thank you for your cooperation in carefully following these procedures. For any questions or concerns regarding student employment and the Federal Work-Study program, please contact Student Financial Services at (207) 602-2342 or

For Supervisors

Step 1: Create a position via Handshake. Once submitted, it will be reviewed by the offices of Student Employment/Student Financial Services
  • Please see Handshake instructions (PDF)
  • Pending postion approval, you are now authorized to move forward with hiring process. We encourage supervisors to become familiar with Handshake as it offers many great features to streamline the entire hiring process. If the position is not approved, you will be notified of any adjustments necessary to move forward with approval or reason for denial.
Step 2: Review and sign the UNE Student Employee Safety and Operational Procedures Form
Step 3: Confirm FWS eligibility by reviewing the list of authorized students provided by the offices of Student Employment/Student Financial Services
  • This list is to be strictly used to confirm eligibility for hiring purposes only. Students included on it have completed all necessary new hire forms and are authorized to earn FWS funds.
  • If you do not have access to this list, please first confirm you have a valid position in Handshake. Access will be provided to this list once position is approved.
  • If you have an approved position but still do not have access, please contact the offices of Student Employment/Student Financial Services for assistance. 

If you are hiring for an institutional work (IW) program position, confirming FWS eligibility is not required. Please be aware we strongly encourage first utilizing FWS whenever possible. If you still wish to proceed with the position through IW, you must confirm available funds with your department head.

Step 4: Complete the authorization process for each student hired

At this point, the student is set to begin working.

Step 5: As the student works, report and approve hours
  • For FWS hours: Timesheets submitted in accordance with the FWS payroll schedule through the WTE process in U-Online 
  • For IW hours: Paper timesheets submitted to Payroll according to the hourly bi-weekly schedule
    • FWS and IW are on different schedules. Please be mindful of which schedule you will adhere to and which timesheets you’ll submit for your students.

Email Payroll with any questions about or issues with timesheets

Step 6: Continuously monitor the student’s earnings to ensure they do not exceed their total annual FWS award or available departmental budget allowance

Thank you for your cooperation in carefully following these procedures. For any questions or concerns regarding student employment, please contact Suheir Alaskari at


Before you are authorized to begin working in the work-study program, an authorization must be completed by your hiring supervisor. An authorization is required every academic year for every individual position worked. Any student or supervisor with questions about the authorization process should contact Student Financial Services at or (207) 602-2342 for additional guidance.

Non-work-study student employment

If Federal Work Study is not part of your financial aid award, you can still apply for the many job opportunities on or around the UNE campuses. Take advantage of public transportation to get to and from jobs off campus. Please see this list of job opportunities and check with Career Services at or (207) 602-2096 about other possibilities. 

Summer student employment

FWS funding is not available for students to use during the summer. Departments wishing to employ students can use their departmental funds to pay a student for summer employment. Please contact Career Services or (207) 602-2096 for more information regarding this process. 

First-time work-study students

As a first-time Federal Work-Study student, you must complete employment forms before beginning work. These documents can be found via your U-Online account under Student Requirements. Since some documentation requires physical verification, you will need to see a Student Financial Services representative in person to turn in your paperwork.

For more information

Federal Work-Study Handbook

Download the Federal Work-Study Program Handbook (PDF) for students and supervisors.