The work-study scholarship was adopted by the university before year 2000 to enable students to balance work and study safely on campus. Since then, over 20 school institutions have recruited undergraduate students who could help with their administrative work.
“By raising the wage for work-study scholarships, we wanted to give practical help to students who are willing to continue their education,” said an official from Scholarship and Welfare.
The wage increase is in line with the Office of Student Affairs’ endeavors to expand the benefits of the work-study scholarship system. The office has continuously increased the hourly wage of the scholarship and has eliminated the GPA restriction in 2014, which had allowed only students with a GPA of 2.0/4.3 or higher to apply for work-study scholarships.
While the hourly wage of work-study scholarships has increased, some fear that the school might decrease the beneficiaries’ work hours to balance the budget. In fact, after the Korea Student Aid Foundation raised the wage of national work-study scholarships from 6,000 to 8,000 won per hour in 2014, universities decreased weekly work hours for student interns due to lack of funding. This diminished the effect of the wage increase for the scholarship recipients.
Currently, administrative offices at Ewha have uploaded recruitment postings for work-study scholarships for the fall semester on the school website. Few school offices including Property Management and Graduate School Administrative Office have decreased possible work hours from this semester.
As for Property Management, student interns could work four hours a day for two or three days per week in 2014. In contrast, its recruitment posting for this semester states that its student interns will work three hours a day and can only work twice a week.
Nevertheless, administrative offices at Ewha denied the correlation between the length of work hours and the wage increase of work-study scholarships. Scholarship and Welfare staff explained that they are in charge of the scholarship budget and payment standards but not students’ work hours. Instead, each department or administrative office sets student interns’ work hours depending on the workload of the respective office.
“The number of work-study scholarship recipients that we recruit and their weekly work hours depend on the amount of work we have,” said an official from Property Management.