George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Hire a Student Worker

Hiring a student worker or research assistant makes you not only faculty/staff at Mason but also an employer! Below you will find resources customized for your needs. 

Post and Market Your Position in HireMason

HireMason is the job and internship database for Mason students and alumni, and it is the first place Mason students go to find on-campus opportunities. Over 17,000 unique students logged in during the  2015 -16 academic year! 

How do I create a HireMason account?

To create your account:

  1. Navigate to
  2. Select the "Employer" button (Note: Employer accounts allow you to post positions, Faculty accounts allow you to refer jobs to students).
  3. Click Register and complete your profile.
  4. Your request will be reviewed within 48 business hours, and you will receive a confirmation email with your username and password.
How do I post a job in HireMason?
  1. Log into HireMason with your username and password.
  2. Click on "Create Job Posting" from the shortcuts menu on the home page.
  3. Complete and submit the job posting. Make sure to select the appropriate Position Type, such as On-Campus Job or Graduate Assistant. For Federal Work-Study jobs, please see the Federal Work-Study section on this page.

Tip! Job Descriptions and Learning Outcomes
For many students, an on-campus job may be their first "real" job. A well written job descriptionand learning outcomes can make the application and interviewing process easier for you and the student. 

Someone in my office created an account but they left. Can we access the account or do we need to create a new one?

You will need to create a new account and we will merge your new account with the existing account from your office. Give our office a call at 703-993-2370 and we can walk you through the appropriate steps. 

I have a position I fill every semester. Do I need to create a new posting every time I post the position?

HireMason automatically archives all of your positions. Select "Copy Existing" under "Create Job Posting" to access your past positions. Simply change the posting dates, and you are ready to go!

Using Federal Work-Study to Hire a Student

Federal Work-Study is a federally subsidized program which provides part-time employment opportunities to eligible students. If on-campus employers create a Federal Work-Study position in their office, federal funds will pay for 75% of the student's wage, and the department will pay the remaining 25%. 

3 steps to hiring a Federal Work-Study student
  1. Determine that there are no unused Federal Work-Study funds in your department. To verify, faculty and staff should connect with their department's fiscal coordinator or liaison.
  2. If no funds are already available within your department, the faculty or staff member should contact Mason's Federal Work-Study Coordinator with the number of students they wish to hire, the desired pay rate, and the total amount of money they are requesting.
  3. Once the department has been approved to hire Federal Work-Study students, the faculty or staff member can begin the process of hiring a student. The Federal Work-Study coordinator will post the position in HireMason, screen the applicants for eligibility, and send you the resume book.

Questions about Federal Work-Study?
Contact Lady Ramirez (703-993-2349), Federal Work-Study Coordinator in the Office of Student Financial Aid.

The Hiring and Onboarding Process

Interviewing and Hiring Candidates

Before the Interview

  • Develop interview questions related to priorities you identified for the position and ensure your questions are within EEO guidelines: Navigating the Interview Process and Avoiding a Legal Landmine. 
  • Consider creating an interview rubric to assist you and other staff members participating in the interview in evaluating all candidates objectively.
  • Create a structure for your interview and make sure all staff members participating in the interview are familiar with that structure. 

During the Interview

  • Provide the candidate with a brief overview of what they can expect during the interview. 
  • Ask all of your candidates the same questions, and be consistent about how you ask the questions.
  • Take notes during the interview to help you compare applicants once the interview is over. 
  • Rate the candidate's performance in the areas you identified as priorities. 

After the Interview

  • Once you have identified a student you would like to hire, provide them with information about the desired start date and confirm the salary for the position. 
  • Provide the candidate with a reasonable amount of time to accept the position.
  • Follow up with candidates you did not select to let them know about the status of their application.
Onboarding New Student Employees

Student employees play an important role in our campus operations so it is essential that new employees have the training necessary to be effective. By following an onboarding procedure such as the one below, student employees will be able to transition into their new role successfully.

Before the First Day

  • Remind your student employees that they need to present original documents that establish identity and eligibility to work in the US when completing their hiring paperwork. This is a Federal requirement that has very specific time requirements that impact the students' ability to start working and get paid. A full list of acceptable documents may be found at USCIS Form I-9 Acceptable Documents. Questions about I-9 documents may be directed to HR & Payroll (703-993-2600).
  • Create a welcome email for your new student worker that covers dress code, required paperwork, and schedule for their first day. 
  • Notify your office of the start date of your new student worker so they can help them feel welcomed.
  • Compile supplies and orientation materials. 

Day 1

  • Review the major responsibilities of the position, how they will be evaluated, office policies, and expectations for conduct.
  • Review your department's mission and how their role supports the mission.
  • Introduce them to members of your office, provide a brief overview of your organizational chart, give an office tour, and discuss the office's emergency procedures.

Week 1

  • Discuss any relevant office events, celebrations, or traditions.
  • Encourage your student to meet with or shadow staff members to learn more about how the office operates.
  • Collect any relevant personal information from your student to assist with recognition (e.g. cell phone number, birthday, picture, preferred way to be recognized, favorite type of candy, favorite color, etc.).

Month 1

  • Encourage your student to set goals for their position. 
  • Discuss and encourage professional development opportunities offered within your office or University Life (e.g. Patriot Experience modules, leadership conferences, University Career Services workshops, Safe Zone Training, etc.). 
  • Meet to review expectations and check in on their experience.
Setting Expectations

Employment at Mason provides students with the opportunity to experience a professional work environment while developing transferable skills that employers value. To help students make the connection between the work they are doing in your office and their future careers, it is important that you set clear guidelines about what you expect from them and how they will be evaluated. 

  • Create a code of conduct and ask all student employees to sign it before starting their position.
  • Meet at least once a semester to develop and discuss goals.
  • Meet at least once a year to discuss their performance in the position and the skills they are developing.