General Hiring Guidelines

On-Campus Employers


Work-study employees are not eligible for benefits, nor for time off (paid or unpaid) such as vacation, sick leave or paid holidays.  Per the Affordable Care Act (ACA), student hourly employees may be eligible for Health Benefits (see below).  Possible exceptions may also apply for jury duty and medical leave. Student employees are not entitled to State Unemployment Insurance through Colorado State University, but are covered under Workers’ Compensation. 

Student Employees and the Affordable Care Act (ACA) 

In compliance with health care reform regulations, beginning January 1, 2015, Human Resources performs a variable-hour employee calculation to determine whether an employee (student, non-student hourly, graduate student) has met the 30-hour weekly average over the course of a 12-month measurement period to gain eligibility for the University’s self-funded employee medical plans and will notify the student employee of eligibility by email.  The information in the email requires the student to take action, whether electing medical coverage or declining coverage, by a specific deadline.  

For more information, visit the Human Resources website at: 

CSU Policy on Drugs and Alcohol

Jury Duty 

  • All regularly employed trial or grand jurors shall be paid regular wages, but not to exceed $50 per day unless by mutual agreement between the employee and employer, by their employers for the first three days of juror service or any part thereof. Regular employment  shall include part-time, temporary, and casual employment  if the employment  hours may be determined by a schedule, custom, or practice established during the three-month period preceding the juror’s term of service. 
  • Student employees are granted paid leave up to $50 per day the first 3 days of jury duty, if they are regularly employed. 
  1. Regularly Employed – includes part-time, temporary, and casual employment if the employment hours may be determined by a schedule, custom, or practice established during the 3 month period preceding the juror’s term of service.  Time exceeding 3 days is not compensable  by the employer. 
  • Student employees summoned as a juror must be paid for normally scheduled work hours while serving, but hours served on a jury which are outside of their normal work schedule are not compensable by the employer. 
  1. For example, an employee normally scheduled to work for 2 hours on the day they are summoned for 6 hours of jury duty will only be paid for 2 hours. 
  • Before jury duty leave can be approved, the student employee must provide a copy of the Juror Service Certificate to their employer to get paid for hours spent on jury duty. 
  • If an employee is summoned to jury duty while being paid with work-study funds, please contact the Career Center. 
  • The employee is expected to report to work, if excused from jury duty during normal work hours. 
  • The department should maintain a record of all documents related to the jury leave usage with the time sheet records 

Pay Period Schedule 

Payment to Students  

Student employees must be paid on an hourly basis whenever a department employee/employer relationship exists. 


Student employees will be paid every 2 weeks as shown on the Pay Period Schedule, with possible exceptions during holiday periods. Direct deposit to the student’s checking or savings account is required for all new employees. Pay advices are now published online for employees to self-service. They may be accessed by signing into the Administrative Applications and Resources (AAR).  

Pay Advices 

Pay advices are published online and can be viewed by signing into the Administrative Applications and Resources (AAR) and selecting Employee Self-Service. Please visit the Human Resource Services website for more information. 

Documenting Hours 

A time sheet or time clock hours must be submitted when due in order for the student to be paid. A daily record of time worked must be maintained. At the end of the pay period, the employee and the supervisor must certify total hours worked by signing the time sheet or approving time clock hours. It is the student’s responsibility to ensure the time sheet is completed accurately and in a timely manner. If the time sheet or time clock hours are not submitted correctly and on time, the student will not be paid on time. Late time sheets mean late pay. 


Break or meal periods for students employed by Colorado State University are not mandatory.  It is recommended that employers implement a policy for best practice, allowing breaks and/or meals as necessary.  The length and frequency of such periods are up to employer discretion.  Generally, a break period (10-20 minutes) is paid and taken on the premises; a meal period (30 min or more) is un-paid, if uninterrupted and duty free.    


Student employees must be paid for any time required of them to work by their employer. Required attendance at training, meetings, seminars, lectures and educational programs are all treated as compensable unless ALL of the following four conditions are met: 

  • Attendance is outside of the employee’s regular working hours. 
  • Attendance is in fact voluntary. 
  • The course, lecture, meeting, or activity is not directly related to the employee’s job. 
  • The employee does not perform any productive work during such attendance.   


Student government officers (ASCSU) are not subject to the State’s employment rate and hour rules, but must maintain authorizations for payment and back up for payment including applicable time sheets, sales records, etc. 

Overtime/Comp, Differential & Call Back Time 

Students will generally be compensated at the rate of time-and-a-half for any overtime (more than 40 hours/week). Work-study students are not eligible for overtime. Student employees are not eligible for compensatory time, and generally not eligible for shift differential or call back pay. 

More payroll information for employers is available on the Human Resource Services Payroll website. 

Sexual Harassment Policy 

Colorado State University does not tolerate sexual harassment among students, employees, or other members of its community. Sexual harassment is prohibited in the employment context by Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and in the education context by Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972. For further information, visit the Office of Equal Opportunity. 

Mandatory Reporting 

All CSU employees and volunteers, including student employees acting in their employment or volunteer roles, are mandatory reporters of any violations or alleged violations of Title IX.  For additional information on the role and responsibilities of a mandatory reporter, see the University Policy regarding mandatory reporting 


Student Employment Retirement Plan (SERP)

The Student Employee Retirement Plan is a state-mandated plan in lieu of Social Security for all higher education students. A 403(b) retirement savings account will be established in the student’s name at TIAA/CREF contributions made to the SERP. The contribution amounts assessed against wages are 7.5% for the SERP and 1.45% for Medicare. 

Participation in the SERP/Medicare is mandatory if students do not meet one of the following conditions for exemption: 


  • Undergraduate and Graduate Students: Must be officially admitted as a degree-seeking student and enrolled at least half-time (3 credits for summer) for a summer term running concurrently with your work schedule. 

Fall and Spring

  • Undergraduate Students: Must be officially admitted as a degree-seeking student and enrolled at least half-time (6 credits). 
  • Graduate Students: Must be officially admitted as a degree-seeking student and enrolled at least half-time (5 credits). 

Evaluation Process
The evaluation process to determine which students are subject to Medicare/SERP contributions has been modified to more closely track with IRS guidelines. During periods of enrollment, the evaluation process will use enrollment checks at the end of each bi-weekly pay period for hourly student employees and on the 15th of each month for monthly employees (Graduate Assistants). When the 15th of the month falls on a Sunday, the monthly evaluation process will run on the Friday preceding the 15th.

  • Monthly Salaried Employees (Graduate Assistants):  A Majority of Graduate Assistants are appointed in August and some in January, so these students must be registered AND their appointments must be setup in the HR/Payroll system by the August & January evaluation dates to be part of the SERP evaluation process for that month. These dates are: 
  • August 2018 enrollment check for monthly employees is August 15, 2018 
  • January 2019 enrollment check for monthly employees is January 15, 2019  

Students not enrolled at least half-time for a term on any of the designated dates will have Medicare/SERP assessed against any wages or salary earned during that pay period. However, students who enroll at least half-time for a term during a subsequent pay period will have Medicare/SERP deductions discontinued for work performed during the subsequent term. 

Students with F1 or J1 visas AND with a tax status of nonresident alien are exempt from Medicare/SERP.

Students who have “career” employee status (any appointment as a State Classified, Faculty, Administrative Professional, Post Doctoral Fellow or Veterinary or Clinical Sciences Intern) are not exempt from Medicare/SERP withholdings being deducted from any “student” wages or salaries.  


All wages paid to student employees by Colorado State University, including those that are earned through the work-study program, are subject to federal and state income taxes and must be reported.

Colorado State University, Student Employment Services cannot give tax advice, so it is recommended that current or former employees check with their tax advisor or the Colorado Dept. of Revenue, (303) 2387378, to determine if filing a tax return is required for any wages earned in the State of Colorado. 

Off-Campus Employers

Posting a Job Announcement

If interested in hiring a student employee, submit your job announcement via our free Job Posting Service. The job announcement will be reviewed and then placed on RAMWeb.

Employers must fully comply with the University’s Non-Discrimination Policy. If you are hiring a work-study student, you must have a valid contract with Colorado State University and you must determine the student’s work-study eligibility by asking to see proof of the work-study award. Please note that the work-study award is specific to an academic term, fall semester only, spring semester only, or the entire academic year.

Hiring a Student Employee  

  1. Post your job inJobXand review applicants.  Hire your candidate in JobX and indicate whether your agency will complete a background check.  If a new hire, please see #2 below.  If a continuing employee, once Student Employment received the hire request in JobX, we will notify both you and the student of hiring status.  
  2. New off-campus work-study employees must schedule an appointment with Student Employment Services (491-5714) to complete personnel/payroll forms.
  3. Important: The student must not begin work until all necessary paperwork is complete. The employer and student will receive an “Eligible to Work” email stating they have completed all hiring documents and are approved by Student Employment Services to begin work.