School of Law Student Employment

Through either need-based federal work-study or through institutional student employment (not based on need), on-campus employment offers law students the opportunity to work in a position that may be available at Detroit Mercy. Students should only pursue employment while attending classes if it does not interfere with their pursuit of academic success. A job can help defray the costs associated with enrollment in law school and reduce the need for student loans. There is a limited number of positions working as Teaching Assistants, Research Assistants, Clinic Assistants, Library Assistants, and Office Assistants.

Students are responsible for arranging their employment. The Financial Aid Office assists students, faculty, administrators, and staff with the employment process once a student has found a position. 

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    Types of Student Employment

    Student employment at the Law School is divided into three types: Federal Work-Study, Regular Student Employment, and Stipend.

    Federal Work-Study - The best way of securing employment as a law student at the University of Detroit Mercy is to be a federal work-study student. Offices, departments, and faculty prefer work-study students to regular student employees because their budget does not have to support student salaries; instead, the federal government pays the salary as part of a student's financial aid package. Federal work-study students are paid an hourly rate with paychecks (direct deposits) every other week but are limited to total earnings based upon their financial aid work-study award. Typically awards are $1,500 a semester.

    Law School Funded Student Employment - If work-study is unavailable, students may still be able to work for the Law School with permission as a student employee. Student employees are paid through departmental funds based upon an hourly rate of pay with paychecks (or direct deposits) every other week. The total amount a student can earn varies.

    Stipend - Students are paid through a general ledger account, a predetermined amount of money regardless of hours worked or rate of pay. The students' compensation is applied to their student account through their financial aid award. This type of work applies to very specific student populations and is not commonly available. No timesheet is required unless the supervisor requests one for their own records.


    Securing Student Employment

    To secure federal work-study students must:

    • Fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at every year you want work-study (or any other financial aid).
      • When you file the FAFSA you need to be sure to answer the question about whether you would like work as part of your package, "yes" (do not indicate you only want loans or that you are unsure). If you have already filed the FAFSA for the school year you want work-study, then go to and "make a correction," changing your answer to that question to "yes."
    • When you are awarded aid, federal work-study will be a part of your overall package (with a few exceptions based upon government determined "need"). Be sure to accept your work-study when you go to to review, change, and/or accept your financial aid award.
    • If you are notified by the Financial Aid Office of additional steps to complete in the financial aid process, follow up and complete them promptly. As always if you have any questions about your work-study award or your total aid package, contact the Law School's financial aid personnel immediately.
    • If you do not already have a commitment from a potential campus employer, visit the Career Services Office pages on the Law School website. There will be information there about departments, offices, or faculty looking for student employees.
    • Once you have a verbal commitment for a job, complete the Pre-Authorization paperwork in the next section. You cannot work until all the paperwork described in that section is complete.

    To secure Law School Funded Student Employment, students must:

    • Identify an office, department, or faculty member who is willing to hire students aware that the funds for student salaries will come from their budget. The Career Services Office has job listings on their website, otherwise typical places to seek work include the Library, the Detroit Mercy Law Clinic, and individual faculty members seeking help with teaching or research.
    • Once you have a verbal commitment for a job, complete the Pre-Authorization paperwork in the next section. You cannot work until all the paperwork described in that section is complete.

    Students eligible for a stipend will be notified by the Law School's Financial Aid Office if they qualify.


    Student Employment Paperwork

    Pre-Authorization Paperwork

    Students are encouraged to submit the following paperwork as soon as possible. 

    Please carefully read all instructions and complete the forms.


    All of these forms must be submitted to Phil Krauss in the Student Service Center before students can be authorized to work. Students must also bring their Social Security card and whatever identification they intend to use to verify employment eligibility on the I-9 form (usually the Social Security card and Michigan driver's license OR the US passport - see the instructions that accompany the I-9). If a student cannot bring these documents and identification to the Student Service Center, they can be submitted via Detroit Mercy email, but the copies of the identification will need to be signed and stamped by a Notary Public.

    Employment Authorization

    After the above forms and identification has been received the students will receive an authorization to work form from Financial Aid. Students should then present the authorization form to their supervisors. Students are not allowed to begin working until all forms, documents, and identification has been received and reviewed by financial aid and the student hs received the authorization form.


    Students are expected to track their hours and submit a timesheet bi-weekly.

    • Paper Timesheets - For the first few pay periods, students will have to complete a paper timesheet and the supervisor will need to sign it. Paper time cards should be delivered to Phil Krauss by noon Monday for manual submission to McNichols campus. 
    • Electronic Timesheets - Once HR has the student in the payroll system, students are expected to submit their timecards online through Paylocity.