USC Upstate student workers affected by payroll lag


SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – USC Upstate officials tell 7News payroll problems caused a number of student workers not to get paid on time.

Fall semester is in full swing at USC Upstate. The home of the Spartans is buzzing with students catching the bus to class, while others are returning to their campus jobs.

But it hasn’t been smooth sailing.

On Friday, university officials sents 7News this statement:

As part of the University of South Carolina System, USC Upstate participates in some shared, centralized business services and human resources functions. Recently, we became aware of a situation in which some USC Upstate students were delayed in receiving payment for their work as student employees. The University of South Carolina System implemented new hiring and payroll software at the end of the spring semester. New and returning students who began work in late August experienced this process for a first time.

USC Upstate is working diligently to help address adverse impacts to select groups of students, including the issuance of off-cycle payroll checks. The new system operates on a pay lag, which is not unusual for large institutions, but is new to the University of South Carolina System. To the best of our knowledge, any student who has submitted required documentation has been paid.

Experiential learning through student employment is an important component of the USC Upstate strategic plan, and it is the University’s priority to ensure this experience is a positive one.

Jessica Blais, Associate Vice Chancellor of Strategic Communications and Marketing

“I know if I was a student employee I would be really upset and I wouldn’t be motivated to do my job anymore,” said freshman Sakiia Donaldson.

According to the university at the end of the spring semester, they switch to a new payroll system. Officials say this semester is the first time new or returning students workers have used the new timesheets.

The new payroll system operates on a pay lag according to the university, which they say is not unusual for an institution of this size.

But that’s not sitting well with students.

“I honestly think it’s not right and not fair because most students that’s how they pay for textbooks and food,” said sophomore Jasmine Holly.

“That’s their eating money,” said freshman Kalai Baker. “That’s their book money. That’s all that stuff.”

“University is very expensive, so if I’m working [and] spending my time to work [or] study I need to eat. I need to pay for my books. I need to pay for my classes,” Donaldson told 7News.

7News did ask USC Upstate if any staff members were impacted by the pay lag, but officials would not say. As of Friday, the believe everyone affected has been paid.

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