Catholic University offers both Federal Work Study (FWS) and Regular Payroll to its students. If you were not offered Federal Work Study on your Financial Aid Notification (FAN) Letter and are interested in working on campus, please contact the Center for Academic and Career Success or visit their website for a listing of available non-work study positions. If you wish to pursue an on-campus work study position, please attend the Employment Fair which takes place during the first week of classes. Your potential employer will verify your eligibility with our office. You must have financial need. A student is allowed to work a maximum number of 19 hours per week, according to a policy set by the Office of Human Resources.

Stipends of $4,000 for 9 1/2 hours of work per week to $8,000 for 19 hours of work per week are available to a limited number of admitted graduate students. Students must have filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and meet the federal need requirements for the award. In addition, students must be accepted to the university, interviewed, and selected by the hiring department with an approved work-study position on file with Career Services to be eligible to receive a stipend.

The Federal Work Study program gives students the opportunity to earn money by working part-time during the school year. The university may offer FWS to students as part of their financial aid package. Unlike other programs, FWS does not pay towards institution charges and cannot be used to reduce an outstanding balance. The student will be paid twice a month for their hours worked.

Students will interview with campus employers for both FWS and Regular Payroll jobs during the Job Fair held during the first week of school. Additional jobs may become available throughout the year.

Things to keep in mind:

  1. Federal Work Study is awarded based on need
  2. Regular campus employment is non-need-based work.
  3. Positions generally pay the same regardless of their funding source.
  4. Students must be enrolled at least half-time to be eligible for Federal Work Study.
  5. Employment earnings are paid directly to the student and are not credited against the student's bill.

DC Reads is a program in which university students engage with the community by tutoring at local schools and non-profits. It began as a response to Clinton's 1997 America Reads Challenge. Now The Catholic University of America is one of seven universities in the DC Metro area that still maintains a DC Reads program. We partner with a variety of organizations from private schools to charter schools and community centers to increase students' academic skills.

Jumpstart at the Catholic University of America is a vibrant community of college students who volunteer in low-income preschool classrooms to build relationships with kids and improve their literacy skills. Jumpstart is a fantastic way to earn your Federal Work Study, build your resume, make friends and give back to your community. 

Important: Federal Work Study authorizations will be available for student pick-up beginning with the Campus Job Fair during fall orientation. You must be registered at least half-time and have accepted your work study award online in Cardinal Station 24 hours prior to the Campus Job Fair in order for your work study authorization to be available to you at the campus job fair. Authorizations that are not picked up, completed and returned to the Center for Academic and Career Success by the last day of the fall semesters add/drop period (as published in the University Announcements) may be rescinded. Work study awards that are rescinded may not be reinstated.

Federal Work Study FAQ

What is Federal Work Study?

The Federal Work Study Grant is a need-based work program. The amount you receive is based on your Expected Family Contribution (EFC), your enrollment status, and your remaining need after all other sources of aid are considered. If any of the above conditions change, your grant may be adjusted. In addition, you must be enrolled half-time (minimum of six credit hours) for each semester you receive a Federal Work Study Grant. You must reapply each year to reestablish your eligibility. Funding for this program is limited, so offers are made annually on a first-come funds available basis.

How is Federal Work Study Awarded?

Federal Work Study is awarded based on the federal calculated need of the student and the availability of funds when the student applies. No separate application is required; the Free Application For Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is all that is needed. Federal Work Study is offered on a yearly basis for the fall and following spring terms. Receiving Federal Work Study one year is not a guarantee that you will receive it the following year. The student must complete the FAFSA each year to be considered. Funding for this program is limited so awards are made on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Why was I not offered Federal Work Study?

If a student is not awarded FWS on his/her Aid Notification Letter it is either because he/she does not meet the Federal Title IV requirements or did not complete the application process before the university allocated all its available FWS funds. Catholic University does offer many positions to student interested in working on-campus, which are non-work study. Career Services can provide a listing of non-work study positions as well as assistance in other work related issues. Their telephone number is (202)-319-5623 or visit Center for Academic and Career Success, for online job listings.

How, when, and how much will I be paid?

Undergraduate students receive semi-monthly paychecks as they work. Graduates can be paid hourly or by monthly stipend. Unlike other aid programs that are credited to the student's bill, Federal Work Study does not defer payment of institution charges and should not be used to reduce an outstanding balance.

All jobs available are on campus with the exception of the D.C. Reads Program which is administered by the Campus Ministry and Community Service performed by the Graduate School of Social Work. Graduate stipend information is available on the Financial Aid "Graduate" web page. The hourly rate ranges from $8.25 to $12.50 per hour, depending on the type of work involved. The majority of on-campus jobs start at $7.00 and $9.00 per hour.

Federal Work Study earnings are not exempt from taxation. You must claim Federal Work-Study earnings on your federal and state income tax. Federal Work Study earnings are excludable from income on the FAFSA as a Worksheet C adjustment.

How do I find a position?

All questions relating to job offerings, position availability, wages, and hours should be directed to the Center for Academic and Career Success by phone at (202)-319-6262 or the website at


Center for Academic and Career Success
Human Resources
Payroll Procedures
DC Reads