Office of Financial Aid

Federal Work-Study Program

The Federal Work-Study (FWS) Program is a need-based financial aid program which provides funding for qualified part-time student employment to help meet educational expenses. The program is jointly funded by the federal government and The John Marshall Law School.

If you meet the eligibility requirements and wish to participate in the program, you are responsible for finding an unpaid/volunteer position with a qualifying agency and completing the FWS Program procedures. If you are approved to receive an FWS Award, it will be added to your financial aid package. FWS awards are compensated at a rate of $15 per hour. The FWS award represents the maximum amount that may be earned for the position.

FWS Terms

Summer FWS Term
May 22–August 18, 2018

Fall Semester FWS Term
August 21–December 15, 2018

Spring Semester FWS Term
January 22–May 18, 2019

Note: You can submit an FWS Request Form at any time before or during an FWS term. You cannot receive an FWS award and externship credit for the same position.


FWS Program Overview & Procedures

If you wish to participate in the FWS program, then you are required to complete the following steps. These steps must be completed each semester that you wish receive an award.

STEP ONE: Interview and accept employment with a qualified agency. The John Marshall Law School does not place students in FWS positions.

STEP TWO: Complete a current year Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) (and subsequent year FAFSA for summer term FWS Awards).

STEP THREE: Submit a completed FWS Request Form to the Career Services Office and receive an email from Student Financial Services stating that you are eligible to receive an FWS Award.

FWS Request Forms are available in the Career Services Office. You may request an award each semester or summer term. A new FWS Request Form is required for each semester or term. You may receive an FWS award for only one position per semester or term. FWS Request Forms are reviewed on a rolling basis in the order that they are received, so you are encouraged to apply early.

STEP FOUR (for new employees only): Bring employment forms and required IDs to the Human Resources Office. Student Financial Services will provide employment forms after reviewing your FWS Request Form and determining that you are eligible to receive an award.

STEP FIVE: Meet with Career Services to discuss payroll and to obtain a Student Hiring Agreement.

STEP SIX: Return the Student Hiring Agreement signed by your supervisor to Career Services.

After you complete these steps, you will receive an email from the Student Financial Services Manager stating that your FWS award has been approved and that an FWS award has been added to your financial aid package. The day that you receive the email is the day on which you can begin reporting hours.

When you receive an FWS award, you become a student employee of The John Marshall Law School. You will receive your FWS award/gross earnings over time via bi-monthly payroll paychecks for actual hours worked, reported, and approved at a rate of $15 per hour. You may work up to a maximum of 20 hours per week during a fall or spring semester and up to 40 hours per week during a summer term.

If you are offered compensation for the same position, you are required to contact Sucheta Misra, Associate Director of Career Services, to adjust and end the FWS award.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the eligibility requirements?
You are required to complete 30 credit hours and achieve a minimum 2.25 GPA. Under extraordinary circumstances, an exception can be made during a fall or spring semester if you have completed 15 credits and achieved a 3.0 GPA. During the summer term there is no credit requirement, but you must have attended John Marshall for at least a semester and maintained a 2.25 GPA.

Additionally you must:

If you are requesting an award for a summer term, you must also complete a FAFSA for the next year and intend to register at least half time for the next fall semester.

If I am eligible to receive an FWS award, do I automatically have a job?
No. FWS eligibility means that you may seek employment, submit an FWS Request Form, and if selected, have an FWS award added to your financial aid package. You must interview for an unpaid/volunteer-qualifying position and be hired before an FWS award can be added to your financial aid package and before you can receive earnings. The ultimate decision to hire you is made by the off-campus agency and not by the Office of Financial Aid or the Career Services Office. The John Marshall Law School does not place students in qualified positions.

How is the FWS Award calculated?
The gross earnings for your award are a product of the number of hours you expect to work per week and the number of weeks you will work at the agency at a rate of $15 per hour. The FWS award is added to your financial aid package net of Social Security and Medicare (92.35% of gross earnings). Your actual earnings/FWS award will be based on actual hours worked and reported.

How can I find an FWS job?
Apply for and be hired by a qualified agency, a sample of which are available below. The agency must be approved by The John Marshall Law School and must sign an Agency Agreement detailing its obligations under the FWS Program. Contact Sucheta Misra, Associate Director of Career Services, to determine whether an agency qualifies.

Announcements for some off-campus positions will be posted on Symplicity. Contact your Career Services Counselor for help with identifying potential opportunities. The John Marshall Law School does not place students in FWS positions.

How do I get paid for FWS?
FWS employees are paid by The John Marshall Law School twice each month—on the 15th and last day of the month—for hours actually worked, reported, and approved. You must submit your web time online in Paylocity by the designated deadlines established by Payroll. If you work at an outside agency, you must also submit a signed paper timesheet. Failure to comply with Payroll procedures will delay your paycheck for an entire pay period. Failure to submit a timesheet by the due date on multiple occasions may be, at the discretion of The John Marshall Law School, grounds for termination from an FWS position. You will be notified by the Payroll Manager where you can pick up a check.

What is the hourly rate?
The hourly rate is $15.

How many hours can I work?
Fall and Spring Semesters: up to 20 hours per week.
Summer Term: up to 40 hours per week.

Are FWS earnings taxable?
Yes, your gross earnings are subject to local, state, and federal taxes. You will be issued a W-2 at the end of the calendar year. Taxes will be withheld from your pay unless you meet IRS student tax-exempt status.

Are there any restrictions for reporting hours?
Yes. If you work more than 7 consecutive hours, then you are required to take a 30-minute, unpaid lunch, which must be documented online in Paylocity (if you work at an outside agency, then you must also record this on your paper timesheet). Also, you do not receive compensation for lunch or break times, sick days, vacation days, or holidays.

You can only report up to 20 hours per week during a fall or spring semester and up to 40 hours per week during a summer term. You will not be compensated for any hours worked beyond these limits.

Are there restrictions on how I can spend my paycheck?
As with any financial aid, you are expected to use your FWS earnings to meet the cost of education in the semester for which you receive the award. The funds cannot be automatically credited to your student account.

Do I have to pay back my FWS earnings?
No. You may keep your FWS earnings and use them at your discretion for educational expenses.

Can I apply for an FWS award in more than one semester?
Yes. You may apply for an FWS award for each semester or summer term in which you are eligible. Selection is not guaranteed.

Can I be employed at more than one FWS position during a semester or summer term?
No.

Can I receive an FWS award during the summer?
Yes. For the summer term, the FWS award is added to the summer term, the following fall semester, or a combination of both depending upon your registration status for the summer term and the duration of the assignment as below:

If you register for the summer term, then the award will be split between the summer term and following fall semester. For work performed from the beginning of the summer term until the end of the summer term, the FWS award is added to the summer term.

For work performed from the end of the summer term until the termination date, the FWS award is added to the next fall semester.*

If you do not register for the summer term, the entire FWS award is added to the following fall semester.*

*You are required to be registered at least half time for the next fall semester in order to receive an FWS award during the summer term.

Can I receive class credit through the externship program and an FWS award for the same position?
No.

Can I receive an FWS award in conjunction with a position outside of the Chicagoland area?
Yes. Contact Sucheta Misra, Associate Director of Career Services, to determine whether your position and agency qualify.

Who can I contact if I have questions?

Richard Leninger
Student Financial Services Manager
Phone: 312.427.2737 ext. 362
Email: [email protected]

Sucheta Misra
Associate Director, Career Services
Phone: 312.427.2737 ext. 306
Email: [email protected]

Heather Williams
Payroll Manager
Phone: 312.427.2737 ext. 355
Email: [email protected]

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Qualified Agencies

Below is a sample of qualified, not-for-profit and government agencies. If an agency does not appear on this list or is outside the Chicagoland area, contact Sucheta Misra, Associate Director of Career Services, to determine if it qualifies.

Each agency must be approved by The John Marshall Law School and sign an Agency Agreement detailing its obligations under the FWS Program.

  • AARP Foundation
  • Access Living
  • Cabrini Green Legal Aid
  • Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago
  • Center for Disability and Elder Law
  • Center on Halsted
  • Chicago Park District
  • Chicago Public Schools
  • Chicago Transit Authority (CTA)
  • Chicago Volunteer Legal Services
  • City of Chicago-Law Department
  • Cook County Assessor's Office
  • Cook County Public Defender's Office
  • Cook County State's Attorney's Office
  • Cook County Treasurer's Office
  • Council on American-Islamic Relations
  • Department of Healthcare and Family Services
  • Department of Justice
  • Domestic Violence Legal Clinic
  • DuPage County Public Defende's Office
  • DuPage County State's Attorney's Office
  • Equip for Equality
  • Federal Defender Program
  • Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)
  • First Defense Legal Aid
  • Human Rights Advocacy Center
  • Illinois Attorney General
  • Illinois Department of Children and Family Services
  • Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
  • Illinois Department of Human Services
  • Illinois Human Rights Commission
  • Illinois Tenants Union
  • Inspector General's Office
  • Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
  • Kane County State's Attorney's Office
  • Lake County Public Defender's Office
  • Lake County State's Attorney's Office
  • Lambda Legal
  • Lawyers for the Creative Arts
  • Legal Aid Society of Metropolitan Family Services
  • Legal Assistance Foundation (LAF)
  • Metropolitan Water Reclamation District
  • National Labor Relations Board
  • PACE Suburban Bus Service
  • Prairie State Legal Services
  • Prevent Child Abuse America
  • Social Security Administration
  • U.S. Army JAG Corp
  • U.S. Attorney's Office
  • U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)
  • U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD)
  • U.S. Patent & Trademark Office
  • U.S. Trustee's Office
  • United Nations High Commission for Refugees
  • Will County State's Attorney's Office

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Contact Us

Richard Leninger
Student Financial Services Manager
Phone: 312.427.2737 ext. 362
Email: [email protected]

Sucheta Misra
Associate Director, Career Services
Phone: 312.427.2737 ext. 306
Email: [email protected]

Heather Williams
Payroll Manager
Phone: 312.427.2737 ext. 355
Email: [email protected]