For many students, employment represents a major contribution toward financing their education. There are jobs available, both work-study and non work-study, ranging in pay, responsibility, and time commitments. It is possible for students who do not receive financial aid due to ineligibility or other circumstances to successfully find employment and pay for many of their educational expenses by working and earning a paycheck. Washington State University is committed to ensuring that all students are aware of opportunities that may be available to assist them in reducing their total debt upon graduation. Steady employment is an excellent alternative to loans and our role is to aid in the connection between employers and students so students can finance some of their education expenses while also obtaining valuable work experience.
How to find a job
Student employment does not place student in jobs but provides an online job board called CougLink where students can search and apply for jobs. Students can interact with the system 24/7 and have the option to cater their job search based on campus and funding source. For assistance in finding employment with Washington State University, you can search for jobs through CougLink. CougLink is an electronic job board that allows for students to view and apply for positions online. Students have the opportunity to search for jobs at their own convenience. Within CougLink, students also have the option to cater their job search to either on-campus or off-campus employment, along with on-campus and off-campus work-study positions. You must log in to the system with your network ID and password.
To begin your job search, go to http://www.couglink.org
Helpful Hints for Finding a Job
Finding a job can be challenging, especially in today’s tough economic climate, but there are resources out there to help you with your job hunt. Washington State University’s most useful resource to aid students in finding a job is CougLink where you can search for work-study positions as well as on and off campus jobs.
Finding a Job (For Students)
- Go to CougLink.org
- Click on the ‘Student/Alumni/WSU Temp Employment’ icon
- Register using your Student Network ID & password or WSU friend ID
- Update your Personal, Academic, and Employment profile under the ‘Profile’ tab
- Upload your Resume (or other optional documents) under the ‘Documents’ tab*
- Click on the ‘Jobs’ tab and instantly gain access to hundreds of internship, on-campus, and full-time employment opportunities
*Note: If you do not upload a resume to your CougLink profile, you will not be able to apply for any jobs posted on CougLink.
Posting a Job (For Employers)
- Go to CougLink.org
- Click on the ‘Employer’ icon
- Click on the ‘Register’ button
- Fill out your personal information and company profile*
- On your homepage click on ‘Create Job Posting’
- Fill out all of the job information and how long you want the position to be posted
- Refer to the Recruiting Policies and Procedures page to ensure your job gets approved
- After the position has been closed you can access all of the applicants for a total of 30 days
*Note: All new registrations have to go through an approval process. All employers will be notified within one business day upon registration
As you apply for positions on CougLink this semester, please be mindful of possible scams. We manually approve each job posted in the CougLink system to ensure that jobs are legitimate and beneficial opportunities. However, we still urge you to be on guard against possible scammers.
Remember, you should not give an individual sensitive personal information (including bank account information). You should also not deposit a check to your bank account that comes from a person you have only corresponded with online. In particular, you should not deposit a check or accept money from a person who offers to pay you a commission for accepting money transfers through your bank account. In this type of situation, it would most-likely be a scam attempt.
If you ever encounter a job or individual on CougLink that you have questions about or that you think may be fraudulent, please contact us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling our office at (509) 335-6000.
We keep a careful watch on all jobs and employers processed through CougLink so we rarely see any scams come through the system. However, please use your best judgement as you apply for jobs online through CougLink as well as on any other jobs sites.
On-Campus Employment Tips
While the majority of on-campus jobs are listed on CougLink, occasionally departments will choose to list available positions on their specific departmental websites. To expand your job search it can be helpful to search within each department. Below are some on-campus departments that generally employ a large number of students annually:
Don’t be afraid to get out there and ask departments if they are hiring or plan to hire in the future. Making this connection could potentially increase your chances of finding employment. In addition, if you have a work-study award relay this information to the potential on-campus employer, as it may make a difference in the type of employment opportunities available to you.
Off-Campus Employment Tips
Numerous local businesses use CougLink to advertise their available jobs and hire Washington State University students. Off-campus employers offer employment for students with or without work-study.
If you are new to your campus, you can reference the local Chamber of Commerce in your area for employment information where local businesses may have employment opportunities.
Another useful resource that can aid in your search for an off-campus job is Worksource, Washington’s official site for online employment services . Work Source is an employment search website that lists local jobs, many of which are appropriate for student employees.
What is Work-Study, and am I Eligible for It?
Work-study is a need-based financial aid award through the FAFSA process. It is neither a grant, as you must work to earn it, nor a loan, as you do not have to pay it back. However, funds are limited and you must have need eligibility determined from the FAFSA in order to receive work-study. Work-study never reduces grants or scholarships, only loans! Work-study funds are awarded to qualifying students to assist them in obtaining employment.
The work–study program subsidizes students’ wages. Work-study funds are used to reimburse a percentage of students’ gross pay but do not cover 100% of the wages. The gross pay comes from two sources; work-study funds plus employer funds. While the program serves as an incentive for employers to hire students it also creates jobs that would not otherwise exist. When the accumulated gross pay earned during the term reaches the work-study award limit, the work-study funding stops and the employers’ pay 100% of any wages earned that exceed the work-study award limit for the term.
Once a job is approved by student employment it is very similar to working any other type of job as you work a particular amount of hours at a certain pay rate and receive a paycheck for what you have earned. For the employer, the work-study program subsidizes a percentage of the student’s wages which make it appealing to hire students who are work-study eligible.
Eligibility: How Does Work-Study Fit into my Financial Aid Award?
To be considered for work-study a student must have:
- A valid FAFSA filed on or before the published priority filing date
- Indicate on the FAFSA he or she is interested in work-study
- No problems with maintaining Satisfactory Academic Progress
- Have at least $1000 of unmet need-based eligibility
Students will not see a work-study award on their financial aid award letter, but will be notified through a zzusis portal notice if they are eligible, and included will be a link to the Work Study Authorization Form (WSAF). The student will then need to secure employment and both student and employer will complete their section on the WSAF as soon as possible, as the awarding of work-study funds is made on a first-come, first-serve basis. Once funding is exhausted, students and employers will be notified that all awards have been made. A WSAF does not guarantee a student work-study funding. Students seeking work-study after this point will be put on a waiting list in the Financial Aid office and if funding becomes available will be notified via email.
On and Off Campus Work-Study Employment
Work-study can be used on-campus or off-campus. When a student works on-campus, the student works for and is paid by WSU. When a student works for an off-campus employer, the student works for and is paid by an organization other than WSU.
On-Campus Work-Study Employment
Students who use their work-study on-campus work for a WSU department. They get paid by WSU twice per month on the 10th and 25th of each month. Students may have their paycheck mailed or can set up direct deposit with Payroll Services. On-campus employers please refer to the Supervisors Handbook for additional information on employing work-study students.
Off-Campus Work-Study Employment
Students may use their work-study off-campus if they work for an eligible off-campus employer. Students should not assume they can use their work-study with any off-campus employer. The off-campus employer must be eligible to participate in the Off-Campus Work-Study Program. The purpose of the Off-Campus Work-Study Program is to provide work experience directly related to student’s academic or vocational pursuits (RCW 28B312.010). Positions where the duties are not directly related to the student’s academic or vocational pursuits are not eligible for participation in the Off-Campus Work-Study Program. Non-profit, non-sectarian community service employers are always eligible to participate in the Off-Campus Work-Study Program. Students are encouraged to work for community service employers.
Students who are applying for off-campus work study will have additional requirements that will need to be met. Please contact Student Financial Services for more information on the requirements.
Links for Additional Information
Academic Success and Career Center