Student Employment FAQ

Where can a student locate job opportunities?

To find open part time job opportunities for university departments, open work study positions, and Graduate Assistantships please visit the university job posting site. For off-campus job opportunities in the local area including third party vendors on campus such as the food vendors located in the Joe Crowley Student Union visit Career Connections.

What are the eligibility requirements to be a student employee?

An eligible student, for this purpose, is defined as an individual who is enrolled as an undergraduate student, graduate student during the fall or spring terms in any academic year. Departments will verify that a student is enrolled by requesting a copy of their course schedule at the beginning of each term. The course schedule is important so that hours can be scheduled that do not conflict with class times. Only enrolled UNR students are eligible for student employment. Students at other NSHE institutions are not eligible. A student may work during the summer term if they are enrolled at the University during the summer terms or are enrolled for the fall semester. Students who graduate or terminate their academic program are no longer eligible for student employment beyond the calendar month of such action. A graduate may pursue a graduate degree to regain eligibility.
A student who is no longer enrolled in classes will be terminated from their student employment positions immediately upon notification being sent to the hiring department by Human Resources.

Summer Employment: Students may work in the summer if they meet one of the following enrollment requirements:
1) must be enrolled in at least 1 credit
2) meet the minimum qualifications required for the fall semester
Additionally, to be eligible for student employment, the student must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident eligible to work in the United States except as specified for International students under the International Student eligibility requirements section.

Students employed at 50% FTE in a Graduate Assistantship must obtain an Approved Overload Request form, from the Graduate School. This approved form must be submitted to the Student Employment office before the student can begin work in a student position.
Students who graduate or terminate their academic program are no longer eligible for student employment beyond the calendar month of such action. If a student was eligible to work during the spring semester of the fiscal year the department may have that student continue employment until the end of that fiscal year (June 30). A graduate may enroll in the minimum credits as a graduate special or pursue a graduate degree to regain eligibility.

***Student eligibility to work is a separate issue from FICA Exempt status.
Individuals who do not meet all eligibility requirements may not be hired under the "student" category. The State classified employment system has categories for temporary employment. Contact the Business Center North (BCN) Human Resource office at 784-6844 for more information.

How many hours can a student work?

Student employees may work up to 25 hours per week when classes are in session (Fall/Spring semesters). Students must not be scheduled to work when they have a scheduled class period. Student employees may not work more than 25 hours a week. During break times winter/spring break and the summer student employees may work up to but no more than 40 hours per week.

  • Students on Federal Work Study funding may work no more than 25 hours per week during periods of enrollment when classes are in session (Fall/Spring semesters).
  • International Students in F-1 and J-1 status may work up to 20 hours per week (40 hours during the winter, spring, and summer breaks)
  • A student employed with more than one department needs to coordinate their schedule with each area they are employed with as to not exceed work hour maximums.

What break periods are student employees entitled to?

  • Breaks: A student working a consecutive 4-hour work period is entitled to one 15-minute rest period with pay. For a consecutive work period that exceeds 6 hours a student worker is entitled to two 15-minute rest periods with pay. In general, rest periods should occur near the middle of the shift for a 4 to 6 hour shift. For shifts of more than 6 hours rest periods should be taken in the first and last third of the shift. Rest periods may not be taken at the beginning or end of the work period and are not cumulative.
  • Meals: In general, an unpaid meal period of 1/2 hour to 1 hour is required when a student employee is scheduled to work more than 6 hours. Under circumstances driven by operational needs, a student may waive the meal period, particularly when the need to work additional hours arises at the end of a scheduled shift. If a student works more than six hours and does not take a meal period, the reason for not taking a meal period must be documented on the time sheet by the student and approved (initialed) by the supervisor. This documentation/time sheet for a student worker must be retained by the department for three years or five years for a student on work study.

What are the summer employment requirements?

Students may work in the summer if they maintain the minimum GPA requirement listed above and meet one of the following enrollment requirements:

1) must be enrolled in at least 1 credit
2) meet the minimum qualifications required for the fall semester

What is work study and how do you get it?

The Federal Work Study Program is a “need-based” financial aid program designed to assist students in earning money to meet their college expenses. To be eligible, a student must have filed a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and have a work-study allocation of funds. Each eligible student is awarded an amount of funds per semester that determines the maximum number of hours per week that may be worked. For more information on work study and other financial aid programs please Financial Aid: Work Study website.

What are the international student employee requirements?

International students must meet the same GPA requirements. They are required by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) regulations to be enrolled full-time (12 –undergraduate or 9 – graduate credits), with an F-1 or J-1 form issued by this university. For more information on international student eligibility and requirements please visit the Office of International Student and Scholars web site. University of Nevada, Reno is proud of the growing diversity on our campus.

International students with 1-20s issued by the University are permitted to work as a student employee. Documentation issued by any other NSHE institution is not acceptable for work purposes under U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) regulations. International students must be enrolled full-time, 12 undergraduate credits or 9 graduate credits, and must meet GPA requirements in order to be eligible for student employment. In addition, prior to employment international students on J-1 Exchange Visitor visas (with a DS-2019) must obtain permission to work on-campus from a responsible officer of the exchange visitor program sponsoring the student. Additionally, the student must visit with the tax specialist in the University Controller’s Office regarding the tax status related to their employment.

Students in F-1 and J-1 status may work up to 20 hours per week (40 hours during the winter, spring, and summer breaks) on campus but are not eligible to apply for off-campus employment during their first nine months in the United States. After nine months in the U.S. in nonimmigrant status, the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (F-1) or the program sponsor (J-1) may grant part-time employment permission only under special conditions.

Family members of F-1 visa holders (F-2) are not allowed to work in the U.S. under any circumstances. The U.S. Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services may grant employment permission to family members of J-1 students (J-2) under special circumstances. For more information contact the Office of International Student and Scholars at (775) 784-6874.

Are there any student employee benefits?

Every student employee is covered during his/her working hours by Worker’s Compensation insurance for work related injury and illness. The coverage provides an incapacitated student employee the means of support and medical care when unable to work because of a job related disability. An employee must immediately report any job related accident or illness to his/her supervisor. The supervisor is responsible for completing the appropriate forms for the BCN Workers' Compensation office. If you have questions, contact BCN Workers' Compensation, phone 784-4394 or visit their website for procedures, forms and information.

Student employees are not eligible to receive other employment benefits such as shift differential pay, paid holidays, vacation leave, sick leave, retirement benefits or permanent status.

As a student, can I just quit my job?

Yes, any student can terminate his or her employment at any time. However, reasonable notice of two weeks should be given to the employer in writing. This is a best practice that allows the employer adequate time to find a replacement and make scheduling changes to accommodate the staffing change. In the professional world, it is expected that an employee give adequate notice of at least two weeks, and preferably more, whenever leaving a job.

What are student employee termination rights?

Since student employment is temporary, hourly and part-time it can be terminated at any time at the discretion of the employer. Also, if a student drops below the required credit and/or GPA requirements, the employment status must be terminated immediately.

How should unscheduled work absences be handled?

From the time of appointment to a student employee position supervisors should make a clear process for notification of absence from a scheduled work period and be sure the student is made familiar with the department expectations. If not clear expectation is given student employees should notify the supervisor no later than the beginning of the scheduled work period when he/she is unable to work. In the case of an extended absence, the estimated duration should be reported to the supervisor as soon as possible. The supervisor is responsible for authorizing all absences.

I feel I'm being discriminated against, what should I do?

In order to file a Grievances Act, NAC 284.658 states that the employee must be a permanent employee. Student Employees are categorized as temporary, part-time employees and do not fall under the grievance act. The employer cannot discriminate based on sex, race, color, national origin, age, religion, or disability. If a student feels that he/she is being discriminated, they may contact the Affirmative Action Office at 784-1547.