Procedure 513: Graduate Assistant Employment

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University Procedure #513

Section 1.        Purpose

The purpose of this regulation is to define Graduate Assistant employment and to describe the requirements and procedures for hiring and compensating them.

Section 2.        Definition

In order to qualify for employment as a Graduate Assistant, the graduate student must be currently admitted to one of Metropolitan State University’s graduate programs, and be making satisfactory academic progress.

Graduate Assistant positions will be required to work 14 to 20 hours per week and will be compensated as Student Workers.  Graduate Assistants must be registered for a minimum of six (6) graduate credits each semester.  Such appointments are limited to no more than three (3) years.   Tuition remission is provided for Graduate Assistant positions.

Employment as Graduate Assistants must:

  1. Enrich the learning experience of the graduate student;
  1. Provide services to the department, program, and university that are related to the student’s graduate study;
  1. Provide financial assistance to qualified graduate students.

Section 3.        Authority

This procedure is established in accordance with MnSCU policy (4.5 student Employees, Part 1 and Part 2), and with MMB Administrative Procedure 8.1.

Section 4.        Responsibility

The responsibility for implementation of this procedure is assigned jointly to the Director of Human Resources and the supervisors.

Section 5.        Effective Date

This procedure becomes effective immediately, and remains in effect until modified or revoked.

Section 6.        Eligibility

Graduate Students seeking employment must:

  1. Have earned a bachelor’s degree
  1. Be fully admitted to a graduate degree program prior to the beginning of the graduate student employment.
  1. Be continuously enrolled in the graduate program, carry at least six (6) graduate credits and maintain satisfactory academic progress.
  1. The position must relate to the student’s graduate study.

In the final semester before graduation, a Graduate Assistant who needs fewer than six (6) graduate credits to graduate may enroll for few than six (6) graduate credits and continue to qualify as a graduate assistant.

Graduating students’ last day of employment is the final day of classes for the term of the assignment.

The supervisor will verify continued eligibility of graduate assistants during the course of the assistantship.  Students who fail to make satisfactory academic progress or who drop below the minimum graduate credit hours of enrollment required will become ineligible for continued employment.

Section 7.        Application Procedure

Vacant positions are posted on the Metropolitan State web site and require a cover letter and resume to be sent to Human Resources (

Submission of the Metropolitan State Application for Aid and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid is required only for the student to qualify for work study funds. 

Section 8.        Employment and Compensation

Concurrent Employment

Graduate assistants may not hold multiple concurrent Graduate Assistant appointments in different departments or administrative units. 

Graduate Assistants may not be employed at the university concurrently as community faculty or in any other employment capacity during the period of Graduate Assistant employment.

If a graduate assistant’s appointment is terminated or if s/he resigns to accept another position that is not a graduate assistantship and this occurs within the first three weeks of the term, s/he shall pay full resident tuition for that term.

Wages and Hours

Graduate Assistants will be paid on an hourly basis at rates set for student workers.  The hiring department will determine the number of hours per week to be assigned, a minimum of 14 up to a maximum of 20 except during breaks and the summer when full-time students may work up to 40 hours a week.

Tuition Remission

In accordance with Board policy, all Graduate Assistants receive in-state tuition rates. Graduate Assistants receive tuition remission for current credits to a maximum of 8 credits per semester.  Tuition remission is not available for summer sessions.  The Hiring Manager completes the tuition remission form showing the amount of tuition to be remitted to the student and the account to which it is to be charged, and submits it to the financial management office.

Section 9.        Hiring Procedure

Graduate Assistants

a. The college/department develops a written description of the graduate assistant duties and forwards it to Human Resources for review and approval.

b. Upon notice of approval, the college completes the Student Employment Opportunity form for posting and disseminates notice of the position broadly to inform all potentially eligible graduate students.

c. The Hiring Supervisor selects the student(s) to fill the positions.

d. The supervisor notifies all applicants and sends the appointee(s) a letter stating the conditions that are to be met for the position.

e. The student submits a written statement of acceptance of the position.

f. The supervisor completes and submits a Student Worker Action Form (SWAF) to the Student Payroll office.

g. The Graduate Assistant completes hiring documents with Student Payroll and begins employment.

International Students

For employment of international students, the supervisor notifies the Office of International Student Services for review and approval of the appointment and enrollment status. 

Section 10.      Review

This procedure is subject to review on a biannual basis.

Section 11.      Approval

Issued on this 28th day of May, 2013.


Virginia Arthur, Provost and Vice President, Academic Affairs


Sue Hammersmith, President