Student Employment Policy

Student Employment Policy

 

PIM Number: 15

Dated:  March 1, 2020

Category: Employment and Staffing

Contact:   Student Employment Coordinator – Ext. 0671

    Director of Staff Employment - Ext. 0670

 

A. Purpose

To define student employment for undergraduate and graduate students currently enrolled at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNC Charlotte).

 B. Policy:

To encourage the use of student employment on campus to subsidize the academic experience by providing opportunities to enhance skills and competency development through campus work experience.

 C. Scope:

For hiring managers in hiring and students who are interested in working, as a student employee: defined as Federal Work-Study, Student Temporary Wage, and Graduate Assistants (Teaching and Research).  Graduate Assistantships are administered through the Graduate School for their policies and procedures go to https://graduateschool.uncc.edu/funding/assistantships-and-employment

 D.  Responsibilities:

The Chancellor and Vice Chancellors are responsible for assuring the student employment program is conducted fairly and consistently.

Temporary Hiring Managers are the student hiring authority and are responsible for communicating student employment opportunities to UNC Charlotte students; identify appropriate job duties, competencies, and position responsibilities; advertise the job posting on Hire-a-Niner, the University Career Center’s job posting site; screen, interview, and select student candidates; prepare and submit the required forms for student employment before the student begins the work assignment; direct international students to the International Student and Scholar Office (ISSO) for employment eligibility verification; equitably determine appropriate student employees’ pay rate and length of assignment; complete reference checking; request Criminal Background Check, if applicable; review work performance and student employee relations issues; approve students’ timesheet(s) within the payroll deadline as applicable; notify the Graduate School and/or Human Resources promptly of assignment changes, discontinuation or termination.

The Director of Financial Aid, or designee(s), is responsible to ensure the financial aid program is administered on a non-discriminatory basis and all necessary components are in place for an effective Student Federal Work-Study program. Designated Financial Aid staff, in collaboration with Human Resources, is responsible for administering the student employment policy in conjunction with Temporary Hiring Managers and students by providing consultation and oversight of all Federal Work-Study program areas including communication, procedures, employee and manager training, and program evaluation.

The Director of Human Resources, or designee(s), is responsible to ensure the program is administered on a non-discriminatory basis and all necessary components are in place for an effective student employment program. Designated Human Resources staff, in collaboration with the Graduate School, International Student and Scholar Office and Financial Aid, is responsible for administering the student employment policy in conjunction with Temporary Hiring Managers and students by providing consultation and oversight of all program areas including communication, procedures, employee and manager training, and program evaluation. Student Employment training will become a part of the required “core” training program for staff development.

The Dean of the Graduate School, or designee(s), is responsible to ensure the Graduate Assistantship program is administered on a non-discriminatory basis and all necessary components are in place for an effective Graduate Assistantship program. Designated Graduate School staff, in collaboration with the International Student and Scholar Office and Human Resources, is responsible for administering the student employment policy in conjunction with Temporary Hiring Managers and students by providing consultation and oversight of all program areas including communication, procedures, financial management, and graduate student training, and program evaluation. 

Student employees are responsible in ensuring that applications are completed online for positions of interest within the job posting period; employment eligibility documents are provided to Human Resources or ISSO (for international students) to verify employment eligibility before beginning work; work assignments are completed as instructed by the Temporary Hiring Manager; hourly student workers report hours through Web Time Entry/ Banner Self Service by the payroll calendar deadlines, and notify your supervisor of any necessary changes to your work assignment. Students paid by a flat rate are not required to report work hours.

 

E. Student Employee Definitions:

  1. Graduate Assistantships: Are awarded by academic departments to graduate students for teaching (TA) or research (RA) as a way of both gaining valuable experience and obtaining financial support. These positions are not exempt from the FLSA (fair labor standards act) but excluded for this resaon. Assistantships are awarded a set amount that is paid over a designated work period. Graduate Students can hold more than one assistantship, but cannot exceed 20 hours per week total during the academic year.  Only during the summer can a graduate student, not enrolled in summer courses, can receive permission to work up to 40 hours a week. 

  2. Student Temporary Wage: Can be an undergraduate or graduate student who works in any capacity for university departments or offices. The department is responsible for funding the student payroll through either operational budget, non-state funding, such as discretionary funds, or grants. Students can hold more than one job (Student Temp Wage, Graduate Assistantship or Federal Work-Study), but cannot exceed 20 hours per week total during the academic year. Students can work up to 40 hours per week during the summer if they attend in the spring, are not taking summer courses and are registered for the fall.

    a.The University Professional Internship Program(UPIP) is a program under the Student Temporary Wage designation. The department is responsible for funding half of the student payroll through either operational budget, non-state funding, such as discretionary funds, or grants the other half is supplemented by the University Career Center, with approval.  UPIP Students can not work more than 15 hours per week. However, they can obtain another student job (Student Temp Wage or Federal Work-Study), but cannot exceed 20 hours per week total during the academic year. Students can work up to 40 hours per week during the summer if they attend in the spring, are not taking summer courses and are registered for the fall. For information about this program, please go to https://career.uncc.edu/faculty/upip
  3. Federal Work-Study: Can be an undergraduate or graduate student who has received the Federal Work-Study Program grant. Eligibility is determined by Financial Aid and requires the student to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year. The student is awarded a set amount of money for the year/semester and paid an hourly rate until all money is exhausted or the term ends. The student can work in any capacity for university departments or offices. What is not earned, goes back to Financial Aid. Federal Work-Study students can only work one Federal Work-Study job at a time. They can also hold a Student Temporary Wage or Graduate Assistantships at the same time, but cannot exceed 20 hours per week total during the academic year. If funding is available during the summer, Federal Work-Study students can work more than 20 hours a week, if they are not taking summer courses. Please note: that Federal Work-Study students cannot work during scheduled class time, even if the class has been canceled. 

  4. Student Stipends: Can be an undergraduate or graduate student who works in any capacity for university departments or offices. The department is responsible for funding the student payroll through either operational budget, non-state funding, such as discretionary funds, or grants. Students can hold more than one job (Student Temp Wage, Graduate Assistantship or Federal Work-Study), but cannot exceed 20 hours per week total during the academic year. Students can work up to 40 hours per week during the summer if they attend in the spring, are not taking summer courses and are registered for the fall.

    1. Student Stipend positions are paid a flat rate, meaning they do not submit a timesheet.  Stipends payments are only available for certain types of positions. Permission will have to be received from the Student Employment Specialist before allowing a student to work.  Examples of a student stipend position are: Residence Advisors, UTOP Mentors, and SOAR Representative.

F. Nepotism:

A student may not be employed in a unit, department, or division where a family member exercises supervisory duties or has influence over the work unit.  Neither may occupy a position that has influence over the other family member‘s employment, transfer, promotion, salary administration or other related management or personnel considerations.

G. Benefits:

Students are not eligible for State benefits and are not eligible to participate in any optional deduction programs.  Students can become eligible for the Affordable Healthcare Plan if they measure 30 or more hours during the lookback period. However, all student employees are hired as variable part-time workers at the time of hire.

H. Job Postings:  

All student employment positions must be advertised through Hire-A-Niner to allow any interested students the ability to apply. 

All Student Workers must complete the required new hire paperwork through the Student Employment Office or ISSO (for international students) prior to starting work.  Any student who performs services that, on the whole, constitute an employee-employer relationship and are for the primary benefit of the university must be paid in accordance with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and North Carolina Wage and Hour Act.  Students who perform these services for a department should not be considered volunteers, nor should they be paid through scholarship, stipend or as an independent contractor. 

All student employment will be in compliance with Equal Employment, Americans With Disabilities Act and the Immigration and Naturalization Service.  

 I. Student Pay Status:

Hourly – paid an hourly rate and record time on an electronic timesheet called Web Time Entry. Hourly employees are paid bi-weekly.  The workweek runs from Sunday through Saturday and students are to record their hours every day they work.  

Stipend - is defined as a fixed sum of money paid periodically for services or to defray expenses. The fact that remuneration is termed a "fee" or "stipend" rather than salary or wages is immaterial. Wages are generally subject to employment taxes and should be reported on Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement.  Stipend payments for Graduate Teaching and Research Assistantships are paid twice a month. 

J. Direct Deposit:

Required for all employees.  Please ensure that your student worker has signed up for all deposit options, instead of Refund only.

K. FICA Exemption:  

Student employees are eligible for exemption from FICA deductions if they meet the minimum registered credit hours (See table below). Students will immediately become ineligible to work as Federal Work-Study student workers if they drop below the required number of credit hours.  Undergraduate students that are enrolled less than 12 hours for the fall and spring term will not receive the FICA exemption. Graduate students that are enrolled less than 9 credit hours for the fall and spring will not receive the FICA exemption.  Graduate Students that are enrolled in Thesis only, will receive the FICA exemption.

Academic Term Undergraduate Minimum Registered Hours Graduate Minimum Registered hours
Fall 12 9
Spring 12 9
Summer 6, three hrs for term 1 and term 2; or 6 hrs for either term 1 or 2; or 6 hrs for the 10-week session 3

During the summer, if your student worker does not maintain full-time enrollment or is not enrolled for summer courses at all, they will not receive the FICA exemption. 

Academic Term Maximum Hours Allowed Per Week (includes all hours worked by Federal Work-Study and Student Temporary Wage at the same time) Notes/Exceptions
Fall and Spring Semesters 20* During winter*, spring break, and after commencement when classes are not in session, students may work up to 40 hours per week with no special approval required
Summer

 20*, if taking summer courses

 40*, if not taking summer courses

SPECIAL NOTE:  Student employees cannot exceed 20 hours a week when classes are in session and the student employee is enrolled in classes

*If a department needs a student to work during the winter break when the University is closed, they must obtain approval from the Student Employment Coordinator. 

L. SUMMER EMPLOYMENT:  

If a student is enrolled for the upcoming fall semester at the above minimum number of hours, he/she can work throughout the summer even if they are not enrolled for any summer classes. If a student works during the summer but is not enrolled in summer classes, he/she would then be subject to FICA taxes.  

Students enrolled during a summer session but not enrolled in fall classes can work up through the time they are enrolled for the summer. For example, if a student is enrolled for a class that begins June 1 and ends July 1, then work is permitted up through July 1. After July 1, the student would no longer be eligible to work unless he/she again becomes an enrolled student.    

A student who is not registered for a summer course but is pre-registered for classes in the fall is eligible to work full-time (40 hours) during the summer term. **Please note, if a student drops below the minimum number of required registered hours or graduates before termination forms have been filed, he/she will be subject to FICA tax for the hours completed after the student became ineligible to work. 

 M. COMPENSATION:  

The University's minimum wage is $9 per hour.  If a supervisor wishes to change the student's hourly rate, he/she must complete the Temporary Employment Change Request form and submit it to the Student Employment office for review and approval. Pay increase should be issued for additional duties of up to 5% and on an annual basis for returning students to the same job of up to 2%.  Increases will be effective the next pay cycle.  Please note that pay increase are not retroactive. 

N. TIMESHEETS:  

Timesheets are due at the end of each pay period the student works. After the two-week cycle closes, the student submits their hours no later than Monday and the supervisor approves the timesheet no later than that Wednesday to receive their paycheck the Friday of the following week. 

Working without approval or “off the clock” is prohibited. Timesheets that are not approved by the aforementioned deadlines will have to follow the late timesheet protocol. Please contact your business officer and/or payroll for instructions. 

O. POSITION TYPE DETERMINATION:  

All job descriptions are subject to review by the Office of Human Resources. Determinations regarding whether the work to be performed by the student are subject to FLSA regulations will be made on the specific job description and duties rather than the job title. Students who perform work that has limited educational value and does not directly relate to the institution’s educational/instructional program should be regarded as employees and are governed by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and North Carolina Wage and Hour Act regulations. 

 P. TERMINATION OF EMPLOYMENT:  

A student worker who is no longer actively working should be separated from the payroll by submitting a Temporary Employment Change Request Form and a Student Evaluation.  When a student worker separates from employment, the supervisor is responsible for submitting this paperwork. Paperwork must be submitted to the Student Employment Specialist for review and processing, immediately. 

 Q. AUDIT REQUIREMENTS: 

Departmental records are subject to audit by the University's Internal Auditor and by external auditors. The hours submitted on the student's timesheet must reflect the actual hours worked on the dates indicated. Timesheets that misrepresent actual time worked can expose the University to serious penalties under state and federal law. Such misrepresentation, either by the student or supervisor is strictly prohibited.  

PIM Number: 
15
PIM Category: