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Supplemental Compensation

The Basics

  • Additional compensation for GAs, from any source, must be processed using the Supplemental Compensation for Graduate Assistants/Associates Form ("sup comp"). 
  • Only students concurrently appointed as a GA, or a GA for the proceeding Spring semester if processing for summer compensation, can be compensated via the sup comp form. 
  • A GA may not receive supplemental compensation past the end of their appointment if they have graduated the previous semester. 
  • A continuing GA must be hired on sup comp during the summer months to maintain their exempt employment status and associated benefits.

Compensation Limits

Because it is recommended that Graduate Assistants/Associates be limited to working no more than 26.4 hours per week total compensation while classes are in session (.66 FTE), including the GA position and any additional on-campus position to prevent them from becoming eligible for employee health benefits under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), eligible sup comp hours should be calculated as the difference between .66 FTE (26.4 hours) and the GA FTE.   For example, if the GA is on a .50 FTE (20 hours per week) then the GA may receive sup comp of 6.4 hours per week. Colleges/departments may set lower maximum limits.

Employment for international students on F-1 or J-1 visas must be limited to twenty (20) hours per week (.50 FTE) while classes are in session. This is a federal regulation and departments are responsible for compliance. Please contact International Student Services at 621-4627 for additional information.    

Class break periods allow some additional hours and F-1/J-1 visa restrictions no longer apply. 

  • Winter Break (12/15/17-01/09/18)
    • Students graduating in December with a terminal degree cannot continue in any student positions after graduation.  Those individuals that are interested in continued employment would need to be hired into faculty, staff, or post-doc positions.
    • School is not in session but students are still being paid for their GA appointments.  Students may be compensated up to the difference between .875 (35 hours) and the GA FTE.  Students should not be working and cannot be compensated for Monday, December 25, Tuesday, December 26 or Monday, January 1 (official University holidays).  GAs on academic appointments are not required to put in hours during the break. Any hours worked must be paid via supplemental compensation.  If you have any questions, please contact Julie Treanor at 621-5193 or treanorj@email.arizona.edu for additional assistance.
  • Summer Break (05/11/18-08/19/18)
    • Students graduating in May or August with a terminal degree cannot continue in any student positions after graduation.  Those individuals that are interested in continued employment would need to be hired into faculty, staff, or post-doc positions.
    • Students completing their terminal degrees in August can be paid via supplemental compensation if they have not had more than 10 weeks at 20 hours without enrollment.  Check GA eligibility at UAccess Analytics> Dashboards> Business Managers Home Page> Retirement Eligibility.
    • It is recommended GAs on supplemental compensation be limited to no more than 35 hours per week total compensation in the summer.
    • GAs receiving summer supplemental compensation that will continue as GAs for Fall 2018 should be enrolled for 6 graduate units for that term.  Students not continuing as GAs or in any other student employment position for Fall 2018 should be enrolled for full time before summer hours begin (refer to full time enrollment policy at http://catalog.arizona.edu/).  Please be aware those students that are not pre-enrolled for Fall 2017 and working at least 20 hours per week will accumulate weeks toward Arizona State Retirement eligibility.
    • Departments should ask GAs about plans to teach for Summer Session BEFORE submitting summer supplemental compensation forms in order to avoid potential excess of allowable FTE.
    • Continuing fiscal GAs may be compensated up to the difference between .875 (35 hours) and the GA FTE.  Students should not be working and cannot be compensated for Monday, May 28 (Memorial Day observed) or Wednesday, July 4 (Independence Day).  

Enrollment Requirements

GAs on supplemental compensation are not normally required to enroll during winter or summer session to maintain eligibility. GAs planning to complete their degrees during winter or summer while still earning supplemental compensation will need to work with their department to determine eligibility. Continuing students that do not have to enroll will have FICA taxes withheld from their paychecks.

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Last updated 11 Jul 2017