Student Employment Handbook
This handbook details policies specific to on-campus employment at Illinois Institute of Technology in accordance to employment law and as determined by the university Student Employment Office. Students employed on campus and supervisors and approvers of student employees are responsible for reading this handbook and being familiar with its content.
Table of Contents
Types of Employment
Eligibility for On-Campus Jobs
Offers of Employment
Maximum Hours of Employment
Paperwork Submission and Verification
- Payroll Authorizations
- Employment Law
- Timesheet Processes and Deadlines
- Late Timesheets
Training and Evaluation
General Working Conditions
- Workers’ Compensation Program
- Driver’s Training Requirements
- University Telephones
- Use of Computers
Federal Work-Study Program
- Determining FWS Eligibility
- Federal Work-Study Awards
- Accepting Awards
- Finding Work
- Changes in FWS Awards
International Student On-Campus Employment
Student Employee Taxation Status
Policy Prohibiting Sexual Harassment
Illinois Institute of Technology believes work experience is a vital and significant component in preparing students for a future career. Student employment is an opportunity to advance an individual’s work ethic, responsibility, and workplace knowledge. This belief reflects the university’s overall commitment to education and underscores its endorsement of self-development. On-Campus Student Employment is an important step in the pursuit of personal and professional goals for all students. All Student Employment information and forms are available on the Student Employment website studentemployment.iit.edu.
The purpose of the manual is to describe Illinois Tech’s current student employment policies and procedures, including those related to the Federal Work-Study program, which are subject to review and change at any time.
- Students may not work in conflict with their scheduled class time.
- Students must be paid for all hours worked.
- Student employees are expected to work the date and time assigned and agreed upon with their supervisor. Student employees should notify their supervisor immediately if they are unable to work their regularly scheduled hours.
- Students must complete a timesheet at the end of each pay period worked through their MyIIT work portal. Late timesheets cannot be electronically submitted; a paper form must be completed and submitted directly to the Payroll Office.
- Students are not permitted to retain timesheets during the academic semester and submit them all at once.
- Students must wear work attire that is in accordance with the department or office’s dress code. Supervisors should inform student workers about the dress code.
- Student employees must perform the designated job duties and follow the assigned departmental procedures in a satisfactory manner and be evaluated each semester.
- Students must adhere to the Illinois Tech Code of Conduct at all times. Alcohol, drugs, bullying, fighting, or any behavior deemed inappropriate is not permitted.
- Supervisors are encouraged to work closely with their students to ensure that job responsibilities and work hours are clearly understood. If problems develop concerning employment, students should contact their supervisors.
- Supervisors are required to complete a training on Blackboard and pass the associated quiz to gain access to the student employment payroll authorization portal.
Types of Student Employees
There are three types of on-campus employees: regular on-campus student assistants, students who are eligible for Federal Work-Study funds, and students who are compensated by stipend or through room and board rather than hourly wages.
1. Regular on-campus student assistants
- Student Assistants can work on-campus under department-funded student employment.
2. Federal Work-Study eligible
- See detailed information about the Federal Work-Study Program. International students do not qualify for Federal Work-Study.
3. GRADUATE ASSISTANTS, RESEARCH ASSISTANTS, AND TEACHING ASSISTANTS
GAs, RAs, and TAs who work in exchange for either reduced room and board and/or tuition credit are not considered to be in an employment relationship with the University. They are often paid via stipend versus an hourly wage and are not eligible for overtime compensation. If you are interested in an GA, RA, or TA position, please contact your department coordinator. Department coordinators send accepted students an offer letter that outlines specific hiring information. Most GAs, RAs, and TAs:
- do not require Payroll Authorizations
- are paid via stipend vs. hourly
- do not complete timesheets
- do not have a minimum hourly wage
- are subject to taxation
See more information about GAs, RAs, and TAs below from the U.S. Department of Labor's Overtime Final Rule and Higher Education:
"Graduate and undergraduate students: Generally, the Department views graduate and undergraduate students who are engaged in research under a faculty member’s supervision in the course of obtaining a degree to be in an educational relationship and not an employment relationship with the school or with a grantor. As such, the Department will not assert such workers are entitled to overtime. Graduate students whose primary duty is teaching or serving as a teaching assistant fall under the FLSA’s teaching exemption. Students who are participants in a bona fide educational program and who serve as resident advisors in exchange for reduced room and board charges or tuition credit similarly are not considered to be in an employment relationship with the institution."
The university upholds the U.S. Department of Labor Test for Unpaid Interns (PDF here) per the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) when determining cases for which students would work without minimum wage compensation.
U.S. Department of Labor Test for Unpaid Interns:
The following six criteria must be applied when making a determination about whether a student is a volunteer or unpaid intern:
- The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the facilities of the employer, is similar to training which would be given in an educational environment;
- The internship experience is for the benefit of the intern;
- The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under close supervision of existing staff;
- The employer that provides the training derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern; and on occasion its operations may actually be impeded;
- The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship; and
- The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time spent in the internship.
If all of the factors listed above are met, an employment relationship does not exist under the FLSA, and the Act’s minimum wage and overtime provisions do not apply to the intern. This exclusion from the definition of employment is necessarily quite narrow because the FLSA’s definition of “employ” is very broad.
Domestic students, graduate and undergraduate, must be registered at least part-time to be eligible for an on-campus job. International students must be enrolled full-time, which is 9 credit hours for graduate students and 12 credit hours for undergraduate students. If the student is a TA or RA, enrollment must be at least 6 credit hours. (For Chicago-Kent, the student must be enrolled half-time during the fall and spring semesters or 3 credit hours during the summer semester). Students who do not fit the credit hour requirement may still be hired as Part-Time Temporary employees through HR, and there are a few exceptions outlined below.
The F-1 student status permits you to work on campus at the university that issued your I-20 while you are enrolled in a full course of study. Your I-20 is your proof of work eligibility for on-campus employment. You must maintain F-1 status to be eligible for this employment benefit; maintaining status means that you are a full-time registered student (except for approved exceptions) in good academic standing with a valid I-20. Full-time enrollment at Illinois Tech is nine (9) credit hours for graduate students and twelve (12) credit hours for undergraduate students.
Students completing their last semester at Illinois Tech may be enrolled in courses that do not meet the full-time requirement. If this is the case students need to talk to their supervisors and to the International Center to receive special permission, by completing the Reduced Course Load form, to work on-campus while enrolled under the minimum credit hour amount. Any student who is less than full time has to be first cleared by the International Center. Once that permission is granted, a paper PA will need to be submitted since the EPAF system will reject the submission based on the minimum credit hour requirements not being met.
- Students interested in an on-campus job must sign up for a Handshake account to view and apply for positions. This can be accessed through the MyIIT Portal, under the Student Life tab. View our Hiring Processes for Students for specific instructions.
- Students interested in Federal Work-Study must complete the FAFSA and be awarded Federal Work-Study. See the Federal Work-Study section.
Working without the proper documentation is illegal. For this reason, beginning an on-campus job before submitting paperwork and receiving approval from Student Employment will not be permitted.
After interviewing students and selecting the best candidate, the employer should present an employment offer to the student in writing, in the form of a letter or email, which references the position and description submitted through the Handshake database, the pay rate, anticipated start date, hours per week and anticipated schedule, and other pertinent information. Once the student accepts, the employer will submit an Electronic Payroll Authorization Form (EPAF) for the selected student employee or employees. Students are in violation of Federal Labor Law if they start working before they receive the email and their job will be terminated.
Offers of employment are contingent upon evidence of identity and employment eligibility as required by the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. This federal law requires that an I-9 Form be completed within three working days from your date of hire. You can obtain the information needed to complete an I-9 at www.uscis.gov or through the One Stop website.
Student employees may work no more than 20 hours per week in any combination of positions or departments at Illinois Tech during any week in which regular classes are scheduled. This is inclusive for all student employees, regardless of employment status (FWS, Non-FWS, and international students in F-1 and J-1 status).
Periods of non-enrollment
The summer and breaks (i.e. winter break and spring break) are defined as periods of non-enrollment. During these time frames, students are allowed to work full-time: up to 40 hours per week (80 hours for the 2-week pay period).
Once completed by the student, all paperwork (I-9, W-4, etc.) must be verified by the Student Employment Office. Individual departments cannot verify this information. However, there is an exception to this for Chicago-Kent student employees and Rice Campus student employees. For Chicago-Kent, student paperwork can be prepared by the PA preparer and submitted to the Office of Administration & Finance, who then checks for accuracy and submits the paperwork to the SEO; for Rice Campus student employees, paperwork can be completed by Institute of Food Safety and Health administration. It is the responsibility of the SEO, not the preparers, to check for completion of the paperwork and verify the accompanying documents.
The preparer can check the status of a PA in the MyIIT channel. Once all approvals are complete, a notification email is sent to the supervisor. If you have questions about acceptable documents please contact the Student Employment Office.
Payroll Authorizations (PAs) are submitted to hire students only after the appropriate recruitment and selection processes are complete. PAs that are entered without an existing position description in Handshake may be rejected, with the exception being students that are being re-hired within the same department. PAs are entered by the student’s supervisor, or their designee. Most PAs can be submitted online (using the Electronic Payroll Authorization Form, or EPAF), with the following exceptions: one-time payments, stipends, and payments for TAs, RAs, or GAs.
Paper Payroll Authorization forms (vs. electronic) must be submitted for the following:
- FOAP changes
- Supervisor changes
- Pay rate changes
For income tuition vouchers, commonly needed for research assistants, teaching assistants, graduate assistants, and fellowship students, see the Graduate Admission website; faculty and staff: find information through your MyIIT Portal under Work Tab, under Graduate Admission - Faculty / Staff.
All students are paid bi-weekly following the University payroll schedule. Participation in direct deposit is strongly encouraged but not required. Students who do not set up direct deposit will have their paychecks mailed to their official mailing address. Mailing addresses can be viewed or updated via Banner Self-Service located on the Academics Tab of the MyIIT portal. Please note: There is a charge assessed for the replacement of lost or destroyed checks.
Supervisors are responsible for timely and accurate submission of all student timesheets. Illinois Labor Law requires that employees are paid within 13 days. Timesheets must be submitted on a timely a basis.
It is illegal for an employer to withhold an employee’s pay because she or he failed to submit her or his timesheet. Students who neglect to complete timesheets on a regular basis may be subject to disciplinary action. Supervisors who neglect to approve timesheets may be subject to disciplinary action by the university.
Timesheet Processes and Deadlines
Once the department and student receive an approval email from the Student Employment Office, the student will be granted access to a timesheet through a Work tab in the MyIIT Portal. Students must complete a timesheet at the end of each pay period worked through their MyIIT Portal. If students did not work during the two-week period, they are not required to submit a timesheet. Late timesheets cannot be electronically submitted; a paper form must be completed and submitted directly to the Payroll Office. Students are not permitted to retain timesheets during the academic semester and submit them all at once.
The timesheet and payment schedules follow the university payroll deadlines. This information can be found on the Payroll website on the Payroll Calendars and Deadlines page. The deadline for students to submit timesheets is the Monday before Friday pay date at 10 a.m., every two weeks. The deadline for approvers to approve timesheets is the Monday before Friday pay date at 4 p.m., every two weeks.
The SEO cannot approve PAs the Friday, Monday or Tuesday before a bi-weekly pay date. This means the student will not see an online timesheet until the Thursday before that pay date. For example, for the pay period January 25 to February 7 any PA submitted February 6-10 cannot be approved by the SEO before Wednesday, February 11.
Step-by-step hiring processes and deadlines are available on the Student Employment website under Hiring Process. View the Approver EPAF and Web Timekeeping Manual and Student Employee Timesheet Manual for details.
If a student employee misses a timesheet deadline, or if a supervisor misses the approval deadline, the student's payment may be delayed. Supervisors or department superusers are able to correct or override students' timesheets until 4 p.m. on the Monday prior to a Friday pay date. After that time, supervisors or students must fill out a paper timesheet adjustment form: Timesheet Adjustment Time In/Time Out. The timesheet adjustment form must be printed, signed by the supervisor, and submitted to the Payroll Office in Tech Central, 4th floor, 4B9-1 by 4 p.m. on the Tuesday before the Friday pay date to ensure payment by Friday.
Training and Evaluation
Supervisors are expected to provide adequate training to all new student employees.
Student Employees are not eligible for paid holiday, vacation, sick leave, unemployment insurance or medical benefits, or any other benefits. Student Employees are paid only for the actual hours worked.
Workers’ Compensation Program
Student Employees are covered by workers’ compensation insurance if they are injured during work hours and in the course of employment. All injuries should be reported immediately to the supervisor. The supervisor must provide the injured employee with a workers’ compensation benefits claim form within 24 hours of notification.
All first aid care for a work-related injury should be provided by the Illinois Tech Health Center (for minor or First Aid injuries only) or Hospital Emergency Room (24 hour service). University Police (Emergency Ext. 911) should be called immediately in all cases involving serious or life-threatening injuries.
The supervisor should provide instructions for reporting absences according to procedures established by the employee’s department. Unforeseen absences due to illness or other uncontrollable circumstances should be reported immediately. Planned absences should be arranged in advance and approved by the supervisor.
Student employees who work more than 5 consecutive hours in a day must be provided an unpaid meal break of at least 30 minutes. For students working more than 5 hours, the lunch/meal period must be given within 5 hours of beginning work. Consequently, timesheets submitted for more than 5 consecutive hours must reflect a 30-minute (unpaid) break. Students are also entitled to a paid 15-minute break period for each 4 consecutive hours worked. The 15-minute breaks can be given in conjunction with the lunch break or as separate breaks at the discretion of the employer. Students working fewer than 4 consecutive hours are not required to have a 15-minute break. Supervisors may determine when breaks are to be taken. Unused breaks are not cumulative or eligible for extra pay.
Driver’s Training Requirements
Student employees required to operate an Illinois Tech vehicle must possess a valid Illinois Driver's license. In addition, they are required to complete and pass an online Defensive Driver’s Training course, provided by Risk Management, within 90 days. Use of private vehicles for Illinois Tech business by student employees must be authorized by the immediate supervisor and a Form 261 (Authorization to use Privately Owned Vehicle) must be completed by the student employee and kept on file in the department. A Travel Request Form 1A must be approved and filed with the student’s immediate supervisor prior to any Illinois Tech business travel. Students must also pass a DMV check.
Student employees who wish to park on campus must purchase a Student parking permit. Student employees are not eligible to park in staff lots.
Telephones should be used for official university business. Personal long distance calls are not allowed from Illinois Tech telephones unless arrangements are made to use a calling card or have the call billed to the caller's home telephone.
Use of Computers
Students are to use computers located in their department for work only.
The Federal Work-Study (FWS) Program is a need-based, federally funded, part-time employment program that provides jobs to eligible undergraduate and graduate degree seeking students while in school. Federal Work-Study positions are located on-campus and off-campus community service. These earnings are paid jointly by federal funds and Illinois Tech. In order to be considered eligible for FWS, students must complete the FAFSA and meet the estimated family contribution number of $15,000 or below for the 2017-18 academic year.
Student FWS eligibility varies from year to year, based on the FAFSA. Students should not assume that if he/she had FWS one academic year, it will continue through the following academic year.
A student’s eligibility is determined by the Financial Aid Office and a FWS award is generated when the estimated family contribution number is within required range and funds are available. International students are not eligible for any federal financial aid awards (including Work-Study).
Hiring Departments will verify the student’s current FWS award amount and earnings paid to date as well as enrollment status (minimum of half-time) prior to approving and submitting payroll authorizations.
Students in the FWS program cannot have more than one FWS job. Students who attempt to work more than one FWS job risk termination of their second position. If a department wants to hire a student who has another job on campus that is paid through FWS, the employer will need to pay the student out of their department’s account.
Determining FWS Eligibility
Beyond completing the FAFSA and having an estimated family contribution number of 15,000 or below, in order to be eligible for FWS, students must:
- Not be in default on a student loan
- Comply with the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy of the university
- Complete all necessary paperwork
- Requirements for Undergratuates: Must have a minimum of 6 credit hoursn>
- Requirements for Graduate Students: Must have a minimum of 4.5 credit hours
Enrollment requirments differ in the summer. Check with Financial Aid for the requirements needed during this term.
Students hired as Community Work-Study students, employed by a federal, state, or local agency, must perform work in the public’s interest. Work in the public’s interest is defined as employment that benefits the national or community welfare, rather than a particular interest of any group.
For the 2017-2018 academic school year, the following rates will be effective for Community Service student employees only:
Community Service Student Employee Wages
Departments employing FWS students are required to attend a training workshop.
Federal Work-Study Awards
The Federal Work-Study (FWS) program provides students with the opportunity to earn a portion of their educational expenses through on-campus and off-campus employment. Undergraduate students are eligible for up to $4000 and graduate students $5,000 through the FWS program for the academic year. Upon finding employment, students can work up to 20 hours per week throughout the academic year. During official academic breaks students may work up to 40 hours. Students can choose to decline this award and opt to find alternative resources to cover their expenses through other means of employment, federal or private loans. Declining the FWS award will make the student ineligible to work in a federal Work-Study position.
FWS earnings are limited to the amount specified in your award letter. Your earnings will be monitored and your employer will be notified by the Student Employment Department when you are nearing your earning limits.
The Office of Financial Aid offers FWS awards to those students whose estimated family contribution number is within required range provided on their FAFSA. The amount of funding received from the Department of Education is limited; therefore, a FWS offer does not guarantee employment. We strongly encourage students who are interested in work-study to seek employment in their first semester.
Payroll Authorizations will be rejected by the SEO if the student is nearing the FWS limit at the time the PA is submitted. (The FWS field in the electronic PA only indicates the full amount of FWS money the student has been awarded and accepted for the year, not the remaining balance.) Until this functionality can be added, preparers should call the Student Employment Office to find out the student's remaining FWS balance. Once the PA is approved and the student is working, the department is then responsible for monitoring a student employee's FWS limit via the Student Employment Office.
Students must accept their FWS awards on their MyIIT Portal in order to be hired into a FWS position. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid if you require assistance with this process.
There is a deadline for accepting work-study awards. Because FWS funds are limited and not all departments participate in the program, we strongly urge students to begin their job search upon arriving on campus for their first semester. The FWS program typically closes for the year early in the spring semester, and there is no guarantee students will be able to find employment that will allow them to earn the full amount of their awards.
The FWS student’s work schedule is set by the department. When assigning work hours, the department must consider the student’s class schedule and academic progress. Students may earn up to but not exceed their work-study award amount. As with all student employees, FWS students cannot provide voluntary services and must be paid for all work performed.
The Student Employment Office and the Office of Financial Aid does not assign you to a position. You will need to identify employment opportunities, apply for positions, and interview on your own. We urge you to search for on-campus employment opportunities through our Handshake database. You can visit the Student Employment Office for any questions you may have regarding applying for Federal Work-Study positions.
Changes in FWS Awards
Receipt of additional aid in the form of outside scholarships, sponsorships, tuition remission, changes to your Expected Family Contribution, etc., may affect your FWS award. The Financial Aid Office may adjust your financial aid award if you receive Financial Aid that exceeds your cost of attendance. The Financial Aid Office will contact students whose financial aid account has been adjusted. Work-Study student employees are required to notify their employer of any changes in their Federal Work-Study award.
In order to prevent the students from continuing to be paid out of FWS funds, supervisors must submit a paper termination PA to the SEO to terminate the FWS position. If the employer would like to continue to employ the student out of their department budget, the need to submit a "re-hire" PA through the electronic PA system using the department's FOAP.
If the student being hired has already worked in the department as a FWS student employee at the same pay and is not nearing the end of their funds, the PA will be processed. If the student being hired is new to a department, but had a FWS job in another department the previous semester that had since been terminated, the PA will be processed as long as the student has not reached their FWS eligibility. If the student accepted FWS, but did not use it in the current academic year, the award does not move into the next academic year. The employer will need to notify SEO to change the account to their department account, or notify the student that they will not be hired.
International students can search for employment opportunities by following Application Procedures for Student Employment. International students must confirm work authorization with the International Center (I-Center), located in the MTCC, Room 202, prior to being hired to work on campus.
As the I-Center website explains, the US government requires that international students obtain a Social Security Number (SSN) in order to work in the country. However, international students are allowed to work for four weeks if an “applied for Social Security Card” receipt from the Social Security Administration has been submitted with their other I-9 paperwork. If the Social Security Card has not been either submitted to the Registrar's Office using this form, or presented to the Student Employment Office within that four-week time period, departments will receive an email from the Student Employment Office instructing them to suspend the student’s work until the Social Security Card is presented to SEO staff. The University does not issue temporary Social Security Cards.
With proper work authorization, international students may be eligible to work off-campus as well. Contact the I-Center for more information. Please review information on the International Center Website for more information, and prior to meeting with I-Center staff.
Newly hired students must complete a Federal/State W-4. If you do not submit a completed Form W–4, your employer must withhold at the highest rate—as if you were single and claimed no allowances. See the Tax Withholding and Estimated Tax form from the IRS for more information about completing Federal W-4. (Page 10 outlines employer witholding information, and other useful instructions can be found on pages 3-12 of this form.)
Continuing students who wish to change their withholding status can submit a new W-4 to the Student Employment office or directly to the Payroll Office.
To be excluded from Social Security and Medicare taxes a student employee must be an undergraduate student enrolled in 12 credits per semester OR a graduate student enrolled in 6 credits per semester.
Most issues requiring disciplinary action can be prevented by through clearly communicated expectations of student employees and addressing problems consistently and promptly. Supervisors are expected to communicate work-related issues with their student employees, and should administer a verbal or a written warning if expectations have been made clear and the behavior persists. Find more information and a warning notice form under the Faculty & Staff section.
Student employees may terminate their campus jobs for a legitimate reason and remain in good academic standing. Student-initiated termination requires that, two weeks prior to the termination date (if applicable), the student informs his/her supervisor and cites the reason for terminating. The department must submit a termination PA when the student’s employment is terminated, regardless of reason.
Supervisor-initiated termination requires that the supervisor adhere to the following guidelines.
- Serious effort should be made by the supervisor to improve performance of the student before termination becomes necessary, including consistency in expectations and feedback and adherance to Disciplinary Procedures.
- A minimum of one conference and one written warning notice must be given to the student, although there may be instances where immediate termination is warranted.
- Reasons for terminating student employment include, but are not limited to:
- Completed entire job (no need for subsequent work)
- Excessive absenteeism or tardiness
- Absenteeism or tardiness without notifying the supervisor
- Failure to work assigned schedule
- Alteration of timesheets or theft
- Unsatisfactory job performance
- Other inappropriate student conduct
- Conflict of Interest
Illinois Tech is dedicated to providing the best academic and professional experience that can be offered to its students, faculty, and staff. The use of illegal drugs and the abuse of alcohol are known to be at cross-purposes to this mission and are not tolerated on campus. Violation of campus regulations concerning the possession, sale, use, or distribution of dangerous drugs or alcohol may subject the student to: expulsion, suspension, probation, or withdrawal of financial aid.
Illinois Tech is fully committed to achieving an alcohol and other drug-free environment for its students and employees. It is campus policy to vigorously pursue, via the campus judicial process, all violations of alcohol and other drug abuse. In addition, unlawful possession or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol may be subject to federal, state or local laws. Please refer to the IIT Public Safety department for more detailed information.
Illinois Tech is fully committed to creating and maintaining an environment in which faculty, staff, and students work together in an atmosphere of mutual respect and unconstrained academic interchange. All faculty, staff, and administrators are held accountable to maintain a working and learning environment free from sexual harassment for students and employees. Sexual harassment can include, but is not limited to the following:
- Explicit use of derogatory terms of a sexual nature
- Use of images that demean one's sex; obscene gestures
- Unwelcome personal attention or touching of a sexual nature
- Direct physical advances which are inappropriate and unwanted
- Sexist jokes about one's clothing, body, or sexual activities
- Request for sex in exchange for grades, letters of recommendation, pay increase or promotions, or employment opportunities
Student employees who believe they have been subjected to sexual harassment should do the following:
- Get help online at Incident Report;
- Contact the Title IX Coordinator, 312.567.5725, firstname.lastname@example.org;
- Contact the Vice Provost for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, 312.567.3080, email@example.com; or
- Contact the Assistant Dean for Academic Administration and Student Affairs at Chicago-Kent 312.906.5289, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Smoking is not permitted in, or within 15 feet of, any campus facility.