Florida Work Experience Program (FWEP)


1. What is the Florida Work Experience Program?

FWEP is a work program created to introduce eligible students to work experience that will complement and reinforce their educational program and career goals and provide a self-help student aid program that reduces student loan indebtedness. This program was created in 1993 for students attending state universities, Florida colleges (public community colleges), and nonprofit Florida postsecondary institutions eligible to participate in the Florida Student Assistance Grant program.  The Florida Legislature expanded the program in 2007 to include career centers operated by a district school board and to educator preparation institutes, thus expanding the program to include students in certificate programs.

2. What are student qualifications?

The eligible student will:
  • Be a Florida resident and U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen.
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • Enroll in an eligible:
    • College or university as an undergraduate degree-seeking student, or
    • Certificate program of 450 or more clock hours at a career center operated by a district school board, or
    • Educator preparation institute despite having a previously earned baccalaureate degree.
  • Be enrolled at least half-time (six semester hours or the equivalent of 180 clock hours) at an eligible participating postsecondary institution.
  • Have earned a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale for all college work completed to continue receiving the award annually.
  • Not owe a repayment under any state or federal grant or scholarship program unless satisfactory arrangements to repay have been made.
  • Not be in default on any federal Title IV or state student loan program unless satisfactory arrangements to repay have been made.

3. How does a student apply for FWEP?

An applicant must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to be considered for this grant.  The deadline for filing the FAFSA is set by the postsecondary institution. The student should contact the financial aid office at the institution they are planning to attend for more information.

4. Which Florida postsecondary institutions are eligible to provide student funding for this program?

Postsecondary institutions that are eligible to participate in FWEP are state universities Florida colleges (public community colleges), and nonprofit Florida postsecondary institutions participating in either the Florida Private Student Assistance Grant or the Florida Postsecondary Student Assistance Grant.  Also eligible to participate are career centers operated by district school boards and institutions with educator preparation institutes.

5. What is the award amount?

The studentís award amount is contingent upon the hourly wage and hours the student works.  The award amount shall not exceed the studentís unmet financial need.  Unmet financial need is derived from the cost of attendance (COA) minus the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) and any other grants and scholarships the student is receiving.  The student wages should be no less than the federal or state minimum wage, whichever is greater.

6. What is Cost Of Attendance (COA)?

The COA is an estimate of how much money will be required to attend school for one year at a college, including all reasonable expenses. The COA is determined for each student by the postsecondary institution and may include:
  • Tuition and fees
  • Books, supplies, transportation, personal, misc.
  • Room and board
  • Dependent care
  • Study abroad expenses
  • Disability expenses
  • Employment expenses for co-op study
  • Loan fees

7. How are awards disbursed?

The employer pays the student from their payroll based on the number of hours a student works.  The institution arranges for employment with the employer.

8. What costs are disbursed to the student's employer?

The Florida Department of Education (FDOE) will provide:
  • 100% reimbursement to the institution for on-campus employment as well as to public elementary and secondary school employers, and
  • Up to 70% reimbursement to all other employers.
  • Reimbursement does not include the full cost of any mandatory benefits.

Note:  The institution furnishes the full cost of all pre-employment requirements that are necessary for a student to be employed by a public elementary or secondary school employer from the FWEP funds received.

9. How often is the student reimbursed wages?

The payment schedule is determined by the employer; however, the employer is required to provide compensation to the student at least once per month.

10. May a student with a baccalaureate degree participate in this program?

A student may receive FWEP after a baccalaureate degree is received only if the student is enrolled in an educator preparation institute.

11. May a student receive funding for a second certificate or diploma program?

Yes, if a student is enrolled in an eligible certificate program of study of 450 or more clock hours at a career center operated by a district school board and has already earned a certificate or diploma, the student may receive FWEP for another certificate program funded for up to 110% of the clock hours required to complete the program of study.
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§ Date Last Modified: 6/7/2012 9:46:31 AM