Graduate Assistant Onboarding

Completing Your Online Onboarding

As a graduate assistant at NDSU, you are considered an employee of the university in addition to your status as a graduate student. Before we can process your employment, you are required to complete the following steps.

Payroll Process for Your Assistantship
  • Hiring Department will initiate a Graduate Assistant Contract.
  • New Hire Acceptance email will be generated and sent to email account on file.
  • An email will be sent from HR/Payroll once hire is approved. Follow instructions on the On-Boarding email.

Access the Activity Guide Manual to assist with the online process.


  • All teaching assistants must complete a background check.
  • Research assistants who are responsible for, or with access to, controlled substances and other drugs, explosives or potentially dangerous chemicals and other substances are required to complete a background check.
  • Service assistants who meet the criteria outlined here must also complete a background check.
  • The company Sterling Solutions will send a background check request to your NDSU email account or your off-campus email account; follow the directions in the email.
  • You may complete your background check up to three months prior to the start of your assistantship.
  • Not completing the request will result in a delay of processing your hire and will affect your start date.


  • Complete an I-9.
  • You will receive an email from with a link to complete Section 1 of the I-9 online form.
  • Present original identification documents to HR/Payroll, or approved department representative, to complete Section 2 of the I-9.
  • Both Section 1 and Section 2 need to be completed prior to a hire being approved. You are not allowed to start working until both sections are completed.
  • When you have completed all necessary steps, the hiring department will receive an email notifying hire has been approved and the date you are able to start working.
  • A complete list of acceptable documents is available on the last page of the Form I-9. Payroll Services is located at 1320 Bolley Drive.

For new employees who will be working at one of our off-campus locations, Section 2 will be handled locally. Please contact the Human Resources and Payroll office for instructions to complete this process.

Completing Required Training and Forms

Your responsibilities as a graduate assistant includes completing required trainings and forms. Failure to complete the requirements can lead to sanctions, including revocation of your tuition waiver and/or termination of the assistantship. Training is available after your start date and may not be completed prior to working. You will receive an email from the Graduate School with instructions.

    •    Refer to your To-Do List in Campus Connection to verify the trainings and/or forms required.
    •    The Annual Notice of Policies/Designated Medical Provider Form is available here.
    •    Baseline Safety, FERPA, Lab Safety Modules may be completed in Vector Solutions.
    •    Trainings and the Annual Notice of Policies/Designated Medical Provider form are required annually.  

Instructions on how to access trainings in Vector Solutions


You must complete all requirements above to receive a graduate tuition waiver and to avoid late fees. The tuition waiver covers base tuition for regular NDSU graduate credits only. Students are responsible for any differential tuition, student fees, and tuition for other types of credits taken, such as undergraduate credits or Cooperative Education credits.  

Due to a two week lag with the Payroll process, it may take up to a month to receive your first pay check. Hours worked from the 1st of month to the 15th will be paid on the last day of the month. Hours worked form the 16th of the month to the end of the month, will be paid on the 15th of the following month.