Student Work Policies


  • You do NOT need a financial aid award (work-study) in order to be eligible to work on campus.
  • UST degree-seeking students at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate levels may be eligible for student employment.
  • Students must be actively enrolled in a course for credit or satisfy one of the following:
    • Freshman students who are registered for courses and have paid their deposit may work the summer prior to their first semester.
    • Students starting class in the Spring term can work during the J-term as long as they are registered for Spring term classes.
    • Students graduating in May can work through the Summer semester.
    • Students graduating in Fall can work through the last day of J-term finals.
  • Students graduating in J-term cannot work past the last day of J-term finals.
  • Exchange students from other ACTC colleges are not eligible for student employment.
  • If a student drops all their courses they are not eligible for student employment.
  • Graduate students who are working on comprehensive exams and/or their thesis and not taking courses for credit are not eligible for student employment.
  • International students may work up to 20 hours per week during the academic year and up to 40 hours per week when not enrolled in courses, during the summer, or breaks.
  • It is recommended that non-international students work no more than 20 hours per week while enrolled in classes; however, they may work up to 40 hours per week throughout the year.

For further questions about eligibility, please contact the Human Resources Department at 651-962-6510.



It is important to implement a formal orientation process for new student employees in the department.  This orientation should include an introduction to the department regarding departmental mission, philosophy, policies and procedures, introduction to other department employees and faculty, and a tour of the department.  This is also a time to review the department student handbook with the student to discuss other important issues, such as responsibilities and expectations. 

Student employees must also be trained in the areas in which they will be working.  Make sure the students have the proper training to complete assigned tasks effectively.  This can include, but is not limited to, such tasks as answering telephones and questions, filing information, and using computer programs and other office equipment.

It is recommended that your department create a new hire checklist for each position.  This checklist should detail core training areas as well as any systems or computer access the student may need.


Hours of Work

It is strongly recommended that students do not work more than 20 hours per week during the academic year.  Working 40 hours or more will forfeit a student's social security exempt status.

It is mandated that students may NOT work more than 40 hours per week between ALL student employment positions.  If a student is employed by more than one department, the student and his/her supervisor must work together to ensure the student's hours do not exceed the maximum number of hours.

If a student is working over 20 hours per week, then it is recommended the supervisor hire an additional student(s) to balance the hours.  This will allow for on-campus employment opportunities for more students.

Due to differing treaties, international students should check with International Student Services to learn of requirements and restrictions for on-campus employment.



  • The University of St. Thomas expects employees to be attentive to work schedules.
  • Student employees are expected to be reliable, punctual, and dependable in attendance and should notify their supervisor if circumstances cause them to be late.
  • On an occasion when absence from work cannot be avoided, the supervisor should be notified.  As much advance notice as possible should be given.  If the supervisor is not available, contact someone else in the department.  Some departments may require the employee to find a replacement if unable to work scheduled hours.
  • Excessive absenteeism and tardiness may be reason for disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
  • Student workers should talk with supervisors to make arrangements for work schedules that conflict with exams.  Work must be scheduled around the student's classes and should be reevaluated each semester.
  • Please remember that student employees' first priority at UST is being a student.  Be as flexible as you can to accommodate schedules when school conflicts arise.


Breaks and Lunches

An optional fifteen (15) minute paid break is allowed during each four (4) hour work period.  Each break is to be preceded and followed by an extended period of work.  Example: If you work 4 hours, you are entitled to a 15 minute break after approximately 2 hours of work.  Break times may not be saved to be used at another time and are to be taken in the middle of the shift.  Employees cannot use the 15 minute break to come to work late or leave early and be paid.

A meal break of 1/2 hour (without pay) is added to each eight-hour work period.  Example: If you work from 8:00am to 4:30pm, 1/2 hour of this time is for a lunch break.  You will be paid for eight (8) hours of work.  Unpaid meal breaks may not be waived and added on as additional payable hours.  Meal breaks should be taken near the middle of the shift.


Holidays and Vacations

Students are not required to work on holidays or during student vacations.  

Students are not compensated for holidays, vacations, or shutdown periods unless they work.

If a student chooses to work on a holiday, they may not be compensated for holiday or vacation pay of any kind.  Students will be compensated for time worked, at their regular rate of pay.

Performance Evaluations

Performance evaluations provide both the supervisor and the student with the opportunity to discuss concerns relevant to the assigned work and working conditions.  On the most basic level, performance evaluations focus on performance problems and workable solutions to those problems.  

Performance evaluations also open the lines of communication between a supervisor and an employee, work to eliminate the 'surprise' factor of future concerns or changes, and promote the discussion of long-term plans and expectations.

In addition, performance evaluations prepare the student employees for the reality of the working world outside the University.  It is suggested that student performance be evaluated on a regular basis.

Performance Evaluation Form - Student 

Tips for Performance Appraisal Discussions

  • Schedule the meeting in advance.
  • Create the proper climate for the discussion.  The discussion should be held in a private place, free of interruptions and other distractions.  Sufficient time should be allowed for the discussion.
  • Discuss accomplishments and concerns.  Allow the students to discuss his/her progress as well.
  • Resolve any problems, concerns, or disagreements together.  Some suggested approaches are:
    • What would help you do your job better?
    • What can I do to help you?
    • What solution do you suggest?
    • Give the student employee the opportunity to voice opinions and feelings and to receive a reasonable explanation for any question he/she may have.
  • Formulate a development plan.
    • Jointly discuss the steps the student employee can take to build on his/her own strengths.
    • Determine if specific 'checkpoints' need to be set up to evaluate the degree of improvements.
    • Jointly discuss what can be done if problems are encountered between now and the next appraisal.
  • Summarize the discussion.  Ask the student employee to summarize the discussion to check his/her understanding of the meeting.

Termination of Student Employees

Termination of student employees may occur for the following reasons:

  • Resignation
  • Student becomes ineligible for financial aid or withdraws from classes
  • Department budget can no longer support student employee
  • Position no longer exists
  • Discharged due to poor performance

Individual departments are responsible for notifying the Human Resources Department if a student is no longer working in the department.  Supervisors must complete a Student Employment Change Request Form explaining the reason for termination.