Undergraduate research assistantships

Student ORCA and the Financial Aid Office support 12 undergraduate research assistantships (URAs) through the Federal Work-Study (FWS) program. This program allows faculty from across the college to request an eligible student as a research assistant to advance their research/scholarship. This program is mutually beneficial, as students gain valuable experience as part of the academic process, while faculty gain valuable assistance to further their scholarship. The specific responsibilities of the student will vary based on discipline but are intended to be more task-oriented (e.g., data entry, literature searches, grant proposal support, routine lab, or studio work) than research appropriate for independent-study credit or summer research supported through grants. Several faculty within a department or across disciplines are encouraged to apply together for a single undergraduate research assistantship position. This is a Federal Work-Study position, so students will be assigned for the entire academic year unless they cease to be eligible financially or academically.

Application process

This is a pre-match program in which faculty are expected to identify an eligible student as part of the application. This may be achieved by advertising a position to recruit interested and eligible students. The Financial Aid Office determines student eligibility by submitting FAFSA data for each academic year. Only students that qualify for the Federal Work-Study program will be eligible for the undergraduate research assistantship. This program will support students for five to 10 hours per week during the academic year.


  • Faculty participating in this program are expected to supervise and mentor Federal Work-Study students and submit appropriate paperwork (e.g., timesheets) throughout the academic year.
  • Duties assigned to the undergraduate research assistant must be directly related to and advance the faculty's research/scholarly agenda.
  • The faculty members are required to submit a report to the RISE office summarizing the experience.

Evaluation criteria

The submission of an application does not guarantee a URA Federal Work-Study student. The Financial Aid Office and Student ORCA will evaluate the applications based on the merit of proposed student duties and how the student will advance the faculty's research/scholarship agenda.

For questions related to the FWS, please contact Anne Benjamin (anne.benjamin@oswego.edu), Oswego's FWS coordinator. Please provide the student's ID number if your question is detailed and specific.

The completed, signed application (MS Word, 18 kb) will be accepted until September 5th. If you need an extension, please let me know- I'll check if it is possible. Send your completed application as a single pdf to kestutis.bendinskas@oswego.edu