Community Service Work-Study vs. Federal Work-Study
The Federal Work-Study Program (FWS) provides eligible undergraduate students with part-time employment to help meet their financial needs while giving them valuable work experience. Beginning in the 2000-2001 award year, colleges and universities receiving FWS funds were required to use at least seven percent of their total annual FWS allocation to pay the wages of FWS students in community service placements. In other words, the government thinks that community service is important—and so does WPI. To meet this seven percent, we are asking all students to complete a minimum of 15 hours of community service throughout the academic year (A-D Terms).
While all students who qualify for and accept their Federal Work-Study must complete the minimum 15 hours of service, students can also choose to fulfill their entire work-study award through community service by enrolling in the Community Service Work-Study (CSWS) program. Students who enroll in the CSWS program automatically meet the 15-hour community service requirement.
Community Service Work-Study Benefits
If you ask us, the CSWS program is a great opportunity: You’ll earn money while working in service positions in the local community during the academic year. You’ll gain so much by performing community service, including valuable, hands-on experience—experience that you cannot learn in a classroom. For many students, this is their first job, and it helps them explore their talents and define their career goals.
Download the CSWS handbook (PDF) to view the university’s pre-approved weekly positions to find a job that fits your interests. If you want to work at an organization that is not listed, please email us. We will determine if the organization is eligible for this federal program. If you schedule allows, you can even work at two different organizations.
Want to give back to the community, but don’t have a ride? The WPI Community Service Van provides transportation for any WPI student volunteering at community service agencies within a 10-mile radius of the city of Worcester.
The Community Service Van is available seven days a week, from 8:00am to 7:00pm. Please submit requests for appointments at least 24 hours in advance. Submitting a request form does not guarantee that a driver will be available to fulfill your request; accommodations will be made based on staff availability.
How to Schedule
- Fill out the Community Service Van Request Form at least 24 hours in advance of your desired pick-up time, and bring it to the Community Service Center on the 3rd floor of the Campus Center.
- You will receive a confirmation email the evening before your requested pick-up time. In the event that we are unable to fulfill your request, you will receive a notification email and an invitation to use public transportation in exchange for later reimbursement from the Community Service Center.
Where to Meet
Please meet the van in front of the Bartlett Center.