Examples of Work Study Programs

If you were accepted for a federal work study program as part of your financial aid or are looking to make money between courses, you may be curious about what type of jobs are available to you on campus. Each college is different when it comes to what they offer, but it’s entirely possible to apply for a work study program position that is helpful to your future career. Here are some examples of work study programs and job opportunities that you may want to apply for.

College student smiling as she works on her laptop in a coffee shop.

Library Assistant

There are certain tasks you’ll have to complete as a library assistant. That includes putting away books, helping students find texts, assisting with computer work, or checking out books to students, faculty, and staff. These tasks can look excellent when you’re resume-building, as working in a library is no joke! Between curation and customer service, there is a lot going on.


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Office Assistant

There are plenty of places for you to work as an office assistant on campus, from the school’s gym to the math department. You’ll answer phones and potentially emails, file documents, assist professors, and complete other office tasks.

Tour Guide

Each college and university offers open houses and tours for high school students. You probably attended some yourself! The school may offer some positions to alumni or people in the admissions department. However, positions are open to work study program students as well.


Your college may very well need assistance when it comes to their marketing department. From social media to pamphlets for open houses, there’s a lot of ground to cover. There could be openings for students here but what you’re hired to do depends entirely on your school’s needs.

Art Department Assistant

There’s a lot going on in an art department and a lot of materials that need to be prepped. Students and faculty can’t always handle all of it on their own. Your job may be to mix clay or organize supplies. This job can vary as there’s so many different areas of art.


Many employees in the computer lab and help desk are actually work study students. You may help fellow students with their computer or printer related issues, supervise computer use, or answer phones at a help desk. This can be a great job as you often have the time to work on your own projects between calls.


If there’s a particular subject you excel in, tutoring may be right up your alley when it comes to the work study program. This could be helping your peers, but you may also be asked to help in local K-12 schools.

Fitness Center Assistant

Fitness care assistants can have a wide range of different tasks required of them. You could be in charge of cleaning, sanitizing, or organizing equipment, or you may be asked to be a receptionist to the center. Other schools ask their fitness center work study students to fill in as managers for the sports teams, judges, referees, or fitness programmers. The job you’re given will most likely be assigned by availability, but your experience in sports may also play a role.

Research Assistant

Many labs in colleges and universities are short staffed. Research assistants in the work study program can provide the much needed support for research, equipment, and labs. You may be asked to clean and maintain equipment, but some students get to take part in exciting work.

Research assistant positions tend to pay more than other work-study positions, but there are also more stringent requirements. A school may only ask for students who are studying a related major or have prior laboratory experience.

Computer Lab Tech

Computer labs often are in need of workers to help other students with computer, printer, and internet issues. You may be assigned to the lab itself or the IT team depending on gaps in their program. This tends to be a favorite as most days it’s quiet and you’re able to work on your own projects or browse the internet while being paid to do so.

Day Care Assistant

As employee and student benefits expand, many colleges are starting to offer day care to parents. Getting this position may be difficult (your school might not even offer it), but work study students can expect to help plan daily activities for the children, implement them, and complete various reception duties. Schools usually require students interested in this position to be focusing on early childhood development or other education-related majors.

Mail Room Assistant

Mail rooms can be busy places, especially at a large university, and they can need all the help they can get. A school will require a mail room assistant to sort and deliver mail, operate equipment, work reception, deliver equipment and supplies around campus, and more.

Local Organization Positions

Sometimes, local nonprofits are looking for employees. Colleges will partner with these organizations for their work study program. The jobs available can vary wildly from animal shelter assistant to working in a food bank to helping at the Boys and Girls Clubs. It’s important to talk to your school to see if there are any partnerships like this.

These are just some of the more common jobs out there when it comes to work study programs. Each school is different however and job opportunities can change from year to year. When applying for a job on campus, try to find one that matches your interests or can give a boost to your resume after you graduate.

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