Student Employment FAQs

All campus employment is coordinated through the Office of Financial Aid. The following FAQs may be of help if you are considering an on-campus job.

How do I access the Rice Handshake Job Board?

Students may access the Rice Handshake job board here.

What is the difference between Federal Work Study and Rice Work?

Federal Work Study is a part-time employment program for students who have demonstrated financial need according to eligibility criteria set forth by the federal government. Students are limited to earning the dollar amount shown on their award letter.

In order to be considered for a work-study award, students must complete the FAFSA each year, demonstrate financial need and maintain satisfactory academic progress.

Rice Work is an institutional student employment program sponsored by various academic and administrative departments. Rice Work does not require a student to demonstrate financial need or to complete the financial aid process.

Who can be employed?

In order to be eligible for employment through the Rice Work Program during the fall and spring terms, students must be enrolled at least half time in for-credit courses at Rice University. (Half time is defined as six credit hours for undergraduates and four and one-half hours for graduate students.)

During the summer, students must be registered for the upcoming fall term, OR be an entering student who has accepted an offer of admission for the upcoming fall term OR be enrolled in credit coursework at Rice during the June/July summer session.

Why should a student work?

Working is not a requirement; it is simply a good way to gain practical work experience and help cover educational or personal expenses. The benefits of employment include:

  • Working in an environment suited to the student's skills, preferences and possible career goals.
  • A work schedule arranged by the student and employer around the student's class schedule. The student will not be asked to work during class periods, and employers are flexible in allowing time off for studying for exams.
  • Professional experience and contacts developed. These can be valuable when beginning a career or applying to graduate school.
  • Federal Work Study wages are not counted by the Office of Financial Aid toward the following year's student contribution.

How many hours each week do students work on campus?

On average, students work 10–15 hours per week. We recommend that students work no more than 20 hours per week in order to remain focused on their challenging academic studies. Students may not work during their scheduled class periods.

Are there any off-campus jobs available?

As recipients of a Federal Work Study award, students are eligible to apply to the America Reads and Counts Tutoring Program, organized by the Community Involvement Center at Rice University. The America Reads and Counts Tutoring supports educational efforts in the Houston community by paying Rice University students to serve as reading and math tutors to elementary-age children.

Can I hold more than one job?

A student may only have one position through Federal Work Study, but you may have multiple positions through Rice Work. Thus, if you have a Federal Work Study position, then your second position must be processed through Rice Work. Please remember, your combined hours should not exceed 20 hours per week.

Can an international student or non-citizen apply for jobs?

As an F-1 or J-1 student, you have the opportunity to engage in on-campus work or practical training opportunities off campus. However, you must obtain the appropriate work authorization before starting to work. If you work even one day before or after your authorization, you must leave the U.S. or face deportation. For more information, please see the Office of International Students and Scholars web pages. The Office of Financial Aid does not advise students on this topic. Please contact the OISS at 713-348-6095.

What forms do I need to submit when I am hired?

Once you have been hired, you must submit the following completed forms to your department supervisor.

May I work in the summer?

Students may work through Rice Work during the summer. During the summer, students must be registered for the upcoming fall term, OR be an entering student who has accepted an offer of admission for the upcoming fall term OR be enrolled in credit coursework at Rice during the June/July summer session.

How do I receive Federal Work Study payments?

Federal Work Study payments are earned as wages through working in a Federal Work Study position at Rice. Earned wages are processed by payroll and paid by direct deposit or check to the student worker. Wages are not applied to your account balance. Available work study positions may be browsed and applied for using the Handshake Job Board.

If I do not use my Federal Work Study award this year, will my eligibility for next year be affected?

No. Your eligibility for Federal Work Study is not affected by your use or non-use of the prior year's award. If you are not eligible for Federal Work Study however, keep in mind as a Rice student, you may be eligible to work on campus through Rice Work.

Contact Us

Office of Financial Aid
P.O. Box 1892
Houston, TX 77251-1892
713-348-4958 office
713-348-2139 fax