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Phyllis TorryDirector of Student Financial Services
Phyllis Nettles Torry
(901) 435-1555
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LeMoyne-Owen College
807 Walker Avenue
Memphis, TN 38126

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(901) 435-1575

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Home » Financial Aid Home » Types of Financial Aid » Federal Work Study

Federal Work-Study

FWS is an employment program sponsored by the federal government.  It is intended to encourage and promote the part-time employment of students, as well as assist the University and its surrounding community.  This program provides jobs for undergraduate and graduate students, who are enrolled at least half-time, with financial need as determined by the results from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  FWS awards are given on “first-come-first-serve” basis.  Due to funding restrictions, FWS may not be awarded to all eligible students.

FWS money is not credited to a student’s account and cannot be used to confirm registration.  Income earned through FWS does not have to be repaid.  A student’s FWS hourly salary will not be lower, but may exceed the federal minimum wage.  Students are paid once a month for hours worked.  Generally, students may work up to 15 hours per week while school is in session.

Job Assignments

When assigning Federal Work-Study (FWS) positions, the Financial Aid Office, to the maximum extent practicable, makes assignments that reinforce the student’s educational program or career goals.  Once the student has been assigned to a department/office, he/she will receive a Job Referral Form indicating the date to start and what department/office he/she are assigned.

Students who are not eligible for FWS may sign up on the FWS waiting list.  Students will be awarded FWS in the event a FWS award is canceled.


  • Federal Work-Study (FWS) money is not credited to a student’s account and cannot be used to confirm registration.  Income earned through FWS does not have to be repaid.  A student’s FWS hourly salary will not be lower, but may exceed the federal minimum wage. 
  • Student pay will be directly paid to the student by check.  Students may pick up checks from the cashier located in Brownlee Hall.
  • Pay periods run monthly from the 1st of the month through the last day of the month with the exception of the month of December.   Students are paid during the first week of the following month.  The FWS Coordinator will notify you of the pay date each month through your LOC email account.

Department/Office Responsibilities

  • Responsible for making sure students who are working have completed the employment verification process.  If the Department has not received a Federal Work-Study (FWS) Job Referral Form for the student then the student has not finished the employment verification process.  All students showing up for work without a Job Referral Form should be referred to the Financial Aid Office and not allowed to work.
  • After obtaining the student’s signature, sign and return the FWS Job Referral Form to Financial Aid Office.
  • Establish a work schedule with the student and explain the duties and responsibilities of the job.
  • Notify the Financial Aid Office, after 14 days of the employment start date, of all students that are set-up to work, but are not working their hours.
  • Monitor the hours worked to ensure the student does not exceed the assigned number of hours each week.  Maximum hours are indicated on the FWS Agreement.
  • Verify the accuracy of student workers’ timesheets before signing them.  The person who signs as supervisor confirms the hours worked as they appear on the timesheet.  Timesheets become official records subject to audit by the federal government, and the supervisors are accountable for the accuracy of these records.
  • Provide evaluation of student’s work performance once every semester and supervise accordingly.  Evaluations are mailed to the department/office at the end of each semester.
  • If terminating a student, provide the Financial Aid Office with a copy of the written termination; written termination to the student is optional, but must notify the student verbally.

Student Responsibilities

  • To continue receiving funds through the Federal Work-Study Program (FWS), students need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year as soon as possible after January 1. 

    Please note that FWS awards are not automatic meaning that you are not guaranteed to receive FWS each year after receiving it your first year

  • Complete any required employments forms (I-9, W-4, etc). 
  • Arrive at the department/office prepared to work.  Work Study is merely the name of the program.  It does not mean you can study while at work.
  • Must adhere to the maximum amount of hours awarded for FWS.  The Financial Aid Office does not guarantee pay for any hours worked over the assigned amount.  If you do not work the maximum number of hours assigned to you, you cannot  roll those hours over to the following semester.  If a student works over their allowable hours, the Financial Aid Office may find it necessary to return other types of financial aid received to prevent an over award of aid.
  • Notify supervisor in advance if you are going to be absent or late for work.
  • Ensure that your supervisor submits timesheets to the Financial Aid Office on time.  Late timesheets delay paychecks until the following pay period.
  • Student workers are not allowed to work during scheduled classes or exam times.
  • Adhere to the dress code policy.

Dress Code

Appropriate appearance is a pre-requisite to successful interaction and communication with the public and other employees.  University employees must project a professional image to the public.  Clothing permitted in the classroom may not be suitable for an office environment.  To ensure a casual but professional image, the following is expected of all student employees:

  • Shorts must be at least the length of fingertips
  • No holes in any clothing item
  • No halter-tops, tube-tops, or mid-drifts
  • Suggestive or inappropriate messages on t-shirts are not permitted
  • Sandals are permitted; but no bare feet

Because personal preferences and fashion trends vary greatly, it is the supervisor’s discretion to identify and address concerns not listed above on an as-needed basis.  Reasonableness and moderation are expected guidelines for determining appropriate appearance. 

Several departments on campus have dress requirements for safety reasons.  Before beginning work, please check with your supervisor to determine if there are any specific dress requirements for your position.