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University of Connecticut Payroll Department

Academic / Non-Academic Graduate Assistantships - FAQs
Why am I being asked to process a payroll authorization for a Graduate Assistant who is providing research support and/or teaching in a different department?
In November of 2011 the Council of Deans and the Vice Presidents announced a wording change that defines a Graduate Assistant as a graduate student who provides teaching or research support to the University that is part of his/her academic program. The important exception to this policy is that if a student’s major advisor verifies that the student’s assistantship is relevant to that student’s career, academic program, and progress toward the degree, the University will grant that assistantship G.A. status. UConn Daily Digest - Important: GA redefinition. Therefore, if the Graduate Assistant is providing research support and/or teaching in a non-academic department, that department is unable to process a Graduate Assistant payroll authorization in the Genesys system. The student’s academic department is responsible for processing the payroll authorization. The following is a link to the Graduate Assistantship, Fellowships, and Internships Defined document.
How do I know which department is an academic or non-academic department?
Academic departments offer a graduate certificate or degree. If you’re still unsure whether or not you area is an academic or non-academic department please contact the Graduate School or the Payroll Department.
I am from a non-academic department, why am I unable to access the Genesys system to look up or process a Graduate Assistant payroll authorization?
Non-academic departments are no longer allowed to process Graduate Assistant payroll authorizations. As such, your security to the Genesys system has been removed. Only academic departments are allowed to enter payroll authorizations into the Genesys system.
How can I find out the academic home department of the Graduate Assistant I am hiring?
  • You can ask the graduate student what School or department they are seeking a certificate or degree in.
  • Look it up in the Student Administration System (PeopleSoft).
How can I locate the work location number for the academic department I need to transfer my Graduate Assistant’s payroll record to?
When you determine the student’s academic home department you will begin the process of creating the payroll authorization with that department. Ask the academic home department what their work location number is. After which, you can contact the Payroll Department to move the GA’s payroll record to that work location number.
Who is responsible for providing the detail information for the payroll processing of the Graduate Assistantship?
The hiring non-academic department is responsible for providing all information relating to the assistantship including authorization begin and end-dates, percent employed, funding and employ code. However, the non-academic hiring department cannot generate a payroll authorization. There is an optional Inter-Department Check List form on the Payroll website that may be helpful to communicate the appropriate information.
Is there a change to the offer letter wording for Graduate Assistants working in non-academic departments?
Yes, graduate students providing research support and/or teaching in a non-academic department will need the offer letter that states the assistantship is “in accordance with your academic plan”, and has an area for the student’s academic advisor to sign off on the assistantship. The following is a link to the offer letter. Graduate Assistantship Offer Letters
Which department completes the Form I-9 and offer letter?
The non-academic department hiring the graduate student is still responsible for completing all supporting documents for the Graduate Assistantship.
Which department provides the KFS account number for the Graduate Assistantship?
The hiring non-academic department will provide the KFS account number to be used when processing the payroll authorization.
What is the academic department’s responsibility in regards to getting signatures?
The Graduate Assistant’s academic department (student advisor) is required to sign the offer letter to verify the assistantship is relevant to that student’s academic program and progress toward the degree. The academic home department is required to sign the payroll authorization.
What responsibility does the graduate student have relating to this new process?
The graduate students’ responsibilities have not changed. The GA is not responsible for acquiring any signatures from their advisor. It is up to the departments’ graduate coordinators to ensure all the appropriate signatures have been obtained.
What is the procedure for hiring a Graduate Assistant in a non-academic department?
What do I do if the hiring department has to make a change to the existing payroll authorization, such as a level increase, a change in end-date, funding change, or percent changes for example?
  • The hiring non-academic department will provide the academic department with the information necessary to process a new or revised payroll authorization; including generating an updated offer letter where applicable.
  • Any payroll changes must be signed by both the academic ‘home’ department and non-academic ‘hiring’ department.
What do I do if I’m notified by the Payroll Department or by the Graduate Assistant that the Graduate Assistant has reached the next milestone and their stipend level can be increased?
While it is advisable to increase the Graduate Assistant’s pay level when they have met the outlined criteria, there is no requirement to do so.. The higher level stipend rate can be applied at the beginning of the next semester, or the next academic year based on departmental/school/College procedure.
What if the Graduate Assistant is split between two departments and one of the departments doesn’t want to process the level increase? Can one department pay the higher level?
No. The decision to increase the Graduate Assistant’s stipend level must be unanimous. There is no way for the system to differentiate the departments and pay at two stipend levels.
How will the non-academic department know when the Graduate Assistant qualifies for a level increase?
The academic department has the ability to run reports to compare what the Genesys payroll system is paying versus what the PeopleSoft student administration system says they are eligible to receive.
If there is a revised offer letter does the academic advisor have to sign the revised letter?
Yes. The academic advisor and the hiring department must sign any revised offer letter to verify the change is still part of the academic plan.
Where will the paycheck be delivered?
The paychecks will be delivered to the academic “home” department unless you notify the Payroll Department otherwise. If the GA signs up for direct deposit only the first and possibly second pay check will go to the academic “home” department. Afterward, the GA will be able to view their deposit statement via ePay.
What happens if an academic department hires a Graduate Assistant from another academic department? Who is responsible for processing the paperwork?
The academic department that is hiring the graduate student is responsible for processing ALL of the hiring paperwork including processing the payroll authorization. In this case it doesn’t matter whether it is the student’s “home” department. An Academic department can hire any Graduate Assistant.
Who is authorized to sign the offer letter if the student’s major advisor is unable to be reached for an extended period of time; such as for a sabbatical leave?
The person who is assigned temporary supervision of the graduate student’s academic progress during the leave would be responsible for signing the offer letter. Again, this is to verify the assistantship is in accordance with the graduate student’s academic plan.
Does the student’s major advisor need to sign the payroll authorization or just the offer letter?
  • The student’s advisor does need to sign the offer letter, but not the payroll authorization.
  • The Dean/Director/Department head or their designated person with signatory authority must sign the payroll authorization.