MSU Human Resources >> Employment >> Student-employees >> Working on Campus FAQs

Working on campus faqs

MSU Student Employment offers a wide variety of job services to Michigan State University students. Employment while attending school provides ways to offset educational expenses, opportunities to learn new skills, and practical knowledge to add to the classroom experience.

Job Seekers

MSU hires approximately 18,000 students per year as department aides, computer assistants, food-service workers, laboratory attendants, research aides, and tutors, just to name a few. Off-campus employment offers a variety of jobs, including child care workers, restaurant workers, and various sales positions. Some jobs require no previous experience and some require more specialized training.

If you are enrolled in a degree-granting program at MSU and registered for the semester in which you would be working, you are eligible to work on campus.

MSU Career Services coordinates all on-campus and off-campus employment, and lists all employment opportunities on Handshake or at 113 Student Services Building. The office is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Career Services staff members are eager to assist you if you have employment questions.

To find out about available positions, visit  Handshake . Handshake lists on-campus and off-campus vacancies as well as career-related part-time positions. The listing describes the duties of the job, hours, rate of pay, and the person to contact. Students are responsible for contacting prospective employers about their job opportunities. If you have an interest in a department or company that is not listed with Handshake, you are encouraged to go directly to the department or contact the company and express your interest.

When you have found an on-campus job that you want to apply for, contact the department, faculty or staff member directly and get information about the position. For off-campus positions, contact the company or agency to find out more information and express your interest. Be persistent-try many jobs. It is a good idea to have a resume that you can give to prospective employers.
When students work part-time, in addition to earning money, they establish a work record, develop discipline, acquire transferable skills, and make an important contribution to Michigan State and/or the community. The experience you gain working as a student will be invaluable when you are in the market for a job after graduation.
Any employment while attending school will give you a clearer understanding of the dynamics of the working world. Juniors and seniors who are willing to search for jobs, have a good chance of finding vacancies in their fields.  Handshake  lists career-related job opportunities and internships.

In order to complete the hiring process for your new position, please complete an electronic I-9 form (Section 1) and sign it with an electronic signature before your appointment start date. To complete Section 1 of the electronic I-9 go to  and select “Click here to access MSU’s online I-9 system." 

The Employer Code for Michigan State University is  16628 . Enter the location code/organizational department number and the date of hire.

Please remember to bring:  Documentation to complete Section 2 of the I-9 with your department within 3 business days of your appointment start date. Please refer to your online confirmation/receipt page for a list of the documents required. 

In addition newly hired employees must complete a W-4 Tax Withholding Certificate. Please note a Social Security Number is required in order to complete the W-4 Tax Withholding Certificate. It is recommended that the original Social Security Card be provided to the hiring unit for verification of name and social security number for IRS reporting purposes. 

To obtain a new or replacement social security card please go to the Social Security Administration. The Lansing Social Security Office is located at 5210 Perry Robinson Court, Lansing, MI 48911. If a student has been hired to work off-campus, he/she would follow the hiring procedure of that company or agency.

On-campus student employees who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents are limited to working a maximum of 29 hours per week on all jobs combined during fall and spring semesters. Students possessing F-1, J-1, and J-2 visas must not exceed 20 hours per week. During semester break, registration week, final exam week, and the summer semester, students (including those possessing F-1, J-1 and J-2 visas) can work up to 40 hours per week. Off-campus employers should inform employees of any job related restrictions.
 MSU student employees are paid bi-weekly based on rate of pay and number of hours worked. Paychecks are delivered directly to the department for which you work or you can sign up to have your check directly deposited into your bank account. Off-campus employers will follow their own pay procedures.

Current Student Employees

Definition of a Student Employee
A student employee is a part-time employee who is enrolled, or is to be matriculated, as a student at Michigan State University, and whose primary purpose for being at the University is the achievement of a degree. During the summer semester, an individual may be a student employee if s/he has been admitted/readmitted and is enrolled for summer or fall semester classes. Student employees are considered at-will employees, and their employment is interim or temporary and incidental to the pursuit of a degree or certification.

You are Not Eligible for Student Employment On-Campus if:

  • You do not meet registration requirements.
  • You have withdrawn from school, or have been academically dismissed or recessed
  • You have graduated.

International Students
To be eligible for on-campus employment, international students with F-1, J-1 or J-2 visas must be pursuing a full course of study. A full course of study is defined as a minimum of 12 credits at the undergraduate level, 9 credits at the master's level, and 6 credits at the doctoral level. Questions should be referred to the Office of International Students and Scholars.

Employment Processing
All students must be processed for employment through MSU Student Employment prior to starting work. To be processed, each department must enter hiring information into the Enterprise Business System (EBS) and submit an I-9 Form using the electronic I-9 system. W-4 Tax Withholding Certificates and Direct Deposit information should be submitted online using the the Enterprise Business System (EBS).

Working Hours
Student employees who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents may work a maximum of 29 hours per week on all jobs combined during fall and spring semesters. Students possessing F-1, J-1 and J-2 visas may work 20 hours per week. During Semester break, final exam weeks, spring break, and the summer semester, students (including those possessing F-1, J-1 and J-2 visas) can work up to 40 hours per week.

Job Classification
Student employee jobs are classified by the degree of previous training, experience, independent judgement, and supervisory skills required.

Pay Periods
Student employees are paid bi-weekly based on rate of pay and number of hours worked. Paychecks are delivered directly to the department for which the student works. Federal and state taxes will be deducted from your paycheck.

Individual Departmental Policies
All student employees at MSU are subject to the Rules Governing Personal Conduct of Employees that can be found in the Student Employment Manual. There are unique circumstances related to each student's job that cannot be outlined in a general policy manual. Therefore, at the date of hire, it is the responsibility of the hiring department to insure that the student understands all of the conditions of employment.

Rest Periods
Student employees should be given a 15-minute rest period during each continuous four hours of work. Rest periods are scheduled by the supervisor to insure the continued efficiency of the work unit. The rest period is to be preceded and followed by a work period. It should not be used to cover a student's late arrival or early departure. Rest periods cannot be accumulated.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Michigan Handicapper Civil Rights Act (MHCRA)
Under the ADA and the MHCRA, an employer is required to make "reasonable" accommodations for a qualified individual with a disability, unless the accommodations would impose undue hardship on the employer. Accommodation requests and issues must be directed to the hiring department. Under the MHCRA, an employee is required to notify an employer that s/he is in need of an accommodation within 182 days of becoming aware of the need for accommodation.

Michigan Right-to-Know Law
Student employees who are known to, or who could potentially be exposed to hazardous chemicals, must be informed of their rights under the law and specific safety procedures necessary to work with these materials.

Drug and Alcohol Policy
Consistent with state and federal law, Michigan State University will maintain a workplace free from the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of a controlled substance.

The MSU Anti-Discrimination Policy states that unlawful acts of discrimination are prohibited. University community members shall not: 1) discriminate against any University community member(s) through inappropriate limitation of employment opportunity, access to University activities on the basis of age, color, gender, handicapper status, height, marital status, national origin, political persuasion, race religion, sexual orientation, veteran status, or weight; or 2) harass any University community member(s) on the basis of age color, gender, handicapper status, height, marital status, national origin, political persuasion, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status or weight.

Relationship Violence and Sexual Misconduct Policy
It is the expressed position of MSU that sexual harassment will not be condoned, nor will MSU permit sexual harassment or other debilitating or degrading behavior in the workplace. A working environment free from verbal or physical sexual harassment will be maintained. Affirmative measures will be taken when the University is made aware of the existence of any such factor.

Work Concerns
Student employees have the right to appeal matters regarding their employment which they believe are unjust, improper, unmerited, etc. Students are encouraged to seek advice and assistance from MSU Student Employment. The procedure for resolving such complaints is as follows:

  1. The student should meet with her/his supervisor and an earnest attempt should be made by both parties to resolve the problem.
  2. If the student does not feel the situation has been satisfactorily resolved, s/he should discuss the problem with the department head or a designated representative.
  3. Should the student still feel the problem has not been satisfactorily resolved, s/he should contact MSU Student Employment. MSU Student Employment can mediate if appropriate. A written grievance can be pursued with MSU Student Employment if all other options fail. An investigation will be conducted by MSU Student Employment and a written decision rendered within a reasonable period of time after the investigation is completed. The decisions of MSU Student Employment are final and binding on all parties.

Students should provide one week notice when employment is voluntarily terminated.

Student employees are hired for one semester unless advised otherwise by their department. Departments should provide at least one week written notice prior to releasing students from their work. Termination without warning is warranted for poor work performance or attendance; flagrant; willful violation of University rules; budget constraints; lack of work; and improper conduct.