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Federal Work–Study

Federal Work–Study (FWS) is a need-based program. It allows eligible full-time or part-time enrolled undergraduate, graduate, and professional students to work part-time to earn part of their educational expenses.

The FWS program awards UT students an average of $3,000 per year. The exact amount you receive is determined by your level of financial need and the hours you work. You will earn $11/hour for on-campus positions and $16/hour for off-campus community services positions. FWS students work less than 30 hours per week, based on the award amount and their class schedule. FWS students are paid biweekly, and the funds are direct deposited into your account. 

The program encourages community service work and work related to your course of study, whenever possible.

You can apply for a FWS award by filing your annual FAFSA. Be sure to answer “Yes” to the question in the FAFSA that asks if you are interested in student employment. Funds are limited and available on a first-come, first-serve basis. To give yourself the best chance of receiving an award, we recommend filing your FAFSA before the priority deadline of February 1st each year.

  • UT’s federal school code is 003530.
  • UTK’s Priority FAFSA deadline is February 1st, so make sure to file before that date each year

Go to the FAFSA     FAFSA Help

If you’ve been awarded FWS, you will accept in your MyUTK account:

  • Log into your MyUTK account using your NetID and password
  • Click on “Continue to MyUTK”
  • Click on “Accept Award Offer” in the “My Financial Information” section
  • Select the 2023-24 aid year
  • Read and follow the on-screen instructions to view and then accept or decline your offer
    • Your total FWS award depends on:
      • When you apply (funding is first-come, first-serve)
      • Your level of financial need
      • UT’s funding availability
  • Complete the “Next Steps and Onboarding” documents and instructions in the following section

After you accept your FWS award, please complete the following steps and prepare for your onboarding session:

  • Complete your FWS Personnel Form
  • Set up direct deposit
    • Direct deposit is required for FWS and must be set up electronically. Visit to complete this step.
    • NOTE: You will need to attach an image of a voided check OR a direct deposit authorization letter (available from a branch location or via email from your personal bank) that shows both your bank routing number AND account number.
  • Complete page 1 of the I-9 Form
    • In the Employer Name or Code box, enter in 17617
    • Select “UT Knoxville” as the location
    • Finish Section 1 and review your information for accuracy
    • Electronically sign the form
    • Click the “FINISH and SUBMIT” button at the bottom of the page
    • Print a copy of the completed page 1 to bring to your onboarding session
  • Fill Out a W-4 Form
    • Print a copy of the completed W-4 to bring to your onboarding session
  • Schedule your 15 minute FWS Onboarding Session with the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships
    • You may schedule your 15 minute FWS Onboarding Session from Monday-Friday, 8:00-11:00 am, and 1:30-4:30 pm
    • Please email to let us know the date and time you would like to come to our office for your onboarding. Our office is located at 116 Student Services Bldg.

Please bring the following required documents to your onboarding session:

  • A copy of the completed page 1 of your I-9 (Make sure all required fields are completed and the date is in the requested format!)
  • Original IRS-approved documents (Photocopies/images will not be accepted.)
  • A copy of your completed W-4 form

  • After you have accepted your award, you may begin to search and apply for jobs.
  • Please note: Although you will be able to apply for jobs, supervisors cannot hire you until you have completed your required paperwork and been onboarded. (See the “Next Steps and Onboarding” section above.) After completion of the required onboarding process, you will be added to UT’s payroll system by the Human Resources department, and able to be hired for a FWS position.

In order to keep your FWS, you must continue meeting the requirements needed to be eligible for Financial Aid. You will also need to file your FAFSA every year to determine continued eligibility.

The UT Payroll Office generates a Form W-2 for all Federal Work-Study student employees.

  • Student employees who opted out of paper delivery can access their W-2 by logging into MyIRISWeb (via MyUTK) and clicking Benefits & Payments.
  • For those who did not opt out of paper delivery, the hard copy is mailed by January 31 to the student’s permanent address on record.

For questions or issues regarding accessing Form W-2, please contact the UT Payroll Office:

400 W Summit Hill Dr; UT Tower 9th floor

(865) 974-5251