Students gain experience, cash with on-campus jobs


For students without jobs off-campus, there are a number of options available through student employment opportunities at Central Michigan University.

Student Employment Services Manager Jon Goodwin said all students can gain employment at CMU through a work study program or by working in general student assistance jobs.

Goodwin said work study jobs are given only to students that had been given a federal work study award as a part of their financial aid package. Financial aid eligibility is determined by prior year income as reported by the students on their Free Application for Federal Student Aid form.

There are job opportunities all over campus, including positions in academic departments, the Charles V. Park Library or at campus dining areas. 

About 3,600 students will be employed this semester through work Study or GSA, Goodwin said.

Although minimum wage for all on-campus jobs is $8.15, how much a student makes depends on the position.

“Pay is determined by the department they work for or the nature of the work,” Goodwin said.

He does believe one field seems to pay the most, however.

“Generally, the tech positions on campus pay the most,” Goodwin said.

Sault Saint Marie senior Justin Rabineau said work study helped him get a gig as a student assistant at CMU’s School of Engineering and Technology.

Rabineau, a cultural and global studies major who has been an assistant since July, said his duties include answering phones and fielding questions from people who call into the office. 

The job hasn't just been beneficial for his finances, either – Rabineau said the experience and the connections made were worth its weight in dollars.

“I’ve made a lot of contacts (there),” Rabineau said. “Even if it’s not in my field, it’s definitely a good idea to have a job on campus.”

On the other side of the student employment spectrum are GSA jobs, which are open to part-time students and all full-time international students. Financial aid is not required for GSA positions, unlike work study programs.

“GSA is money that departments have in their budget to pay students,” Goodwin said.

Goodwin said students who did not qualify for work study aren’t out of luck. Nearly two-thirds of student workers on campus have GSA positions. 

Mount Pleasant sophomore Jami Watson had trouble finding a non-work study job. Instead, she found a post as a student office assistant at CMU’s Office of Foreign Languages, Literatures and Cultures with GSA.

“The majority of the jobs I looked for on campus were work study,” Watson said. “I’m not eligible for work study. I never have been. That’s why I’m so grateful to have a job on campus.”

Watson, who is studying French education and started working at the office in May, said she is quite fond of the position.

"It’s in my field, so it’s a subject I can relate to," Watson said. "And I get to work with a lot of people I can relate to."

Students looking for on-campus work can visit the Student Employment Services website at


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