|Policy Title||Student Employment|
|Responsible Office||Human Resources|
|Policy Type||Personnel and Payroll|
|Last Revision Date||12/14/2020|
This procedure is written to provide important information regarding student employment at the University; namely, Graduate/Teaching Assistant employment, Federal College Work-Study employment and temporary service funded student employment.
Graduate and Teaching Assistant Employment
Each academic program is authorized to employ a specific number of Graduate/Teaching Assistantships (GA/TAs). These positions are funded by an annual SUNY allocation and all recipients are represented by the Graduate Student Employee Union (GSEU). Each GA/TA position (or "line") includes a base academic-year stipend and may be accompanied by a full tuition scholarship for fall and spring semesters. Base (minimum) stipend levels can vary by discipline but must abide by minimums set in place by GSEU. The academic year stipend is processed in the form of a biweekly paycheck by the Office of Human Resources.
Graduate Assistants (GA’s) generally complete research and/or provide administrative aid; they may also teach. Teaching assistants (TA’s) provide some type of classroom support, either by teaching, leading discussion sections, grading, or preparing classroom materials. Half-time assistantships typically require approximately 10 hours of work per week or a .25 Full Time Equivalent (FTE). Full-time Graduate/Teaching Assistants are expected to invest approximately 20 hours per work week (.50 FTE) on GA/TA employment (for both semester and academic year appointments), it is recommended that the remainder of the their time be spent in making progress toward degree completion. As a result, any additional campus employment by any full-time (20 hour) GA/TA is generally prohibited and would require exceptional circumstances and explicit approval from the Graduate School prior to the commencement of performing any duties.
Any request for permission to work must be accomplished through the form at the link below and must include the 20 hour GA/TA work schedule, the proposed work schedule of the second assignment, and approval of the GA/TA supervisor. Incomplete forms will not be considered.
Federal College Work Study Employment
The major objective of the Federal College Work-Study program is to provide eligible students with an opportunity to secure financial assistance by placing them in positions they are qualified to fill at the University. The money they earn must fit within the federal grant allocations made by the Financial Aid and Employment Office on campus. Cooperation from all parties involved in requesting, assigning and supervising work-study students not only meets the objectives of that program but also reduces the amount spent in temporary service payments for student employees. In addition, the employment experience is often an important way that students learn skills later applied in the workplace. Students must meet certain financial aid requirements to be employed within this program and when approved, are generally given a set dollar allocation or award (maximum hourly rate they may earn is $21.89 per hour). This represents the maximum amount of money the student may earn for their period of eligibility. Within this, departments may hire College Work-Study student employees to accomplish a range of work within their areas. The Office of Financial Aid and Student Records, the department that the student is employed with, as well as the Office of Human Resources are responsible for assuring that students do not exceed their allotted work study awards. Additionally, the departments are allocated an annual budget for Federal College Work Study expenditures and are responsible for assuring they do not go over that budget throughout each budget year.
Student Assistant Employees (Temporary Service)
Another methodology to hire and pay students at the University is by virtue of the temporary service student payroll, as a Student Assistant Employee. In order to be eligible for this employment, the student must be an enrolled student at the University (or another SUNY unit if a summer hire) and in good academic standing. Student Assistant employees may not exceed 29 hours per work week. The 29 hours per work week limit applies at all times, including when classes are not in session and summer. While classes are in session, it is recommended that departments limit student employees to working 20 hours per week (all jobs on campus combined, including private employers on campus). International students are limited per USCIS regulations to working no more than 20 hours per week while classes are in session.
The hourly rate paid to these student employees should conform to the range of acceptable hourly wages in place by virtue of state and federal regulations with the maximum hourly wage of $21.89 per hour.
Appointment to the student payrolls works much like the procedure for regular faculty and staff at the University. Departments initiate an HR Form, indicating the type of employment, name of the student, as well as the necessary array of personal and position information required for the Human Resources Office to facilitate the appointment. This information is then received by the Human Resources Office, where processing occurs into the SUNY HR system. All required paperwork to facilitate employment, including the I-9 form and tax forms, are required to be completed by the student employee prior to being appointed to the University payroll. This is a matter of federal law. University departments are responsible for submitting all Hire/Re-hire/Concurrent Hire HR Forms when a student is hired to the Graduate/Teaching Assistant, Student Assistant or Federal College Work Study payrolls. Departments are also responsible for identifying the appropriate SUNY and department account to charge for all student employees in their office. When submitting HR forms to appoint student payroll employees, it is essential to include the matching SUNY and department account(s) that these payments will be charged to.
Federal College Work Study and Student Assistant employees’ are required to produce photo identification when they pick up checks and to sign for their paychecks in the distribution office of the Administration Building. Graduate/Teaching Assistant paychecks and direct deposit stubs are generally distributed by the home department. Direct deposit stubs that have not been picked up in the Administration Building for three pay periods are destroyed. It is critical that student employees notify the Office of Human Resources of all changes in home addresses to ensure prompt and accurate delivery of their paychecks and tax documents.
Student employees are exempt from the payment of social security and Medicare as long as they are registered and attending classes on at least a part time basis. Unless they are registered and attending summer school, they will be required by federal law to pay these taxes on all summer employment on the Student Assistant payroll. In the event that a student worker does not attend Binghamton University, please include this information in the comments field of the HR Form.
All student employees are eligible for membership in the New York State Employee’s retirement system.
Student Time Sheets
Graduate/Teaching Assistants are required to complete one time record per semester, recording any work time missed due to illness. The time record can be found on the HR Website and is sent out to the GA/TA listserv each semester. All completed GA/TA records should be submitted to the Office of Human Resources after each semester.
Student time sheets for both the Federal College Work Study payroll and the temporary service Student Assistant payroll are required to be submitted, completed and signed, as per the published schedule, to the Office of Human Resources by noon on Friday following the end of the pay period with the exception to early deadlines (see current SA/FCWS payroll calendar). The student employment payrolls operate on a lag payroll schedule. Note, it takes up to three weeks before a Federal College Work Study or Student Assistant employee's first payment is issued (providing time sheets have been handed in on time). After the first payment, subsequent payments will be made on a bi-weekly basis and will cover the prior two weeks of service.
Critical: Late submission of time sheets may result in delayed payments.
Student Employment Team, 607-777-6959, 607-777-3624, 607-777-5344
Payroll Team, 607-777-5327
Manager of Student Employment, 607-777-3624