A freshman’s guide to student employment

One of the more popular student employment opportunities for UM students is working at the Herbert Wellness Center on campus.Positions available to students include fitness assistant, front desk assistant, operations assistant, intramural referee and lifeguard.
One of the more popular student employment opportunities for UM students is working at the Herbert Wellness Center on campus.Positions available to students include fitness assistant, front desk assistant, operations assistant, intramural referee and lifeguard. Photo credit: Instagram, @umiamiwellness.

Going to college is expensive, especially in Miami. Whether you want to offset living expenses, pay for books or need some extra pocket money, student employment gives you the opportunity to gain work experience and earn a wage. Here’s what you will need to know if you’re looking to take advantage of those opportunities.

The University of Miami has approximately 5,500 student employees working on campus, and with a variety of on- and off-campus jobs, the school makes it easy for students seeking employment.

Type of Employment

There are two options for employment: on-campus and off-campus jobs.

On-campus jobs allow students the benefit of arranging work around their class schedule and activities as well as easy accessibility. Off-campus jobs allow students a wider range to pick from, but transportation can often become an issue without a car or close proximity to the Metrorail.

Students who seek employment through the school can pick from both types of jobs, but their employment is broken down even further into federal work study (FWS) and non-federal work study jobs. FWS is a need-based program granted to students through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the average annual award amount at the University of Miami is $3,000.

FWS jobs offered off-campus fit into the category of Community Service Work Study and involve programs such as America Reads, which allows students to get paid for community service. While some jobs on campus are FWS only, students who do not qualify can seek the many student-assistant jobs, from the library to the pool to the athletic department.

What to Expect

The average number of hours a student employee at UM works per week is 12 to 15 hours, but some students might choose to work up to 20 hours a week.

The current minimum wage in the state of Florida is $8.65, but the average hourly rate on campus is $9.05 according to the Office of Undergraduate Financial Assistance and Employment. Ideally, students should try to find a job that works around their class schedule, pays well and allows for flexibility in cases of emergency.

Where to Find Jobs

The easiest way for students to find a job both on and off campus is through the university’s student employment job posting site, JobX, which allows students to search through a variety of jobs, while personally tailoring to their class schedule and interest.

For off-campus opportunities, students can also check out other job listing sites such as Indeed and ZipRecruiter or individual sites for other companies.

Come Prepared

It’s important to come prepared with the proper documentation. You will need to prove that you are eligible to work in the United States. Two common ways to do this are through a valid US passport or a driver’s license and Social Security Card or birth certificate, while international students will need to provide the I-20 and I-94 forms.