These Four Employers Help Pay College Tuition Costs
- College tuition has tripled over the past 20 years.
- Corporations are increasingly adding in some form of college financial aid assistance as part of their job benefits.
- Some employers, such as WalMart, will pay a portion or all of the tuition if the employee attends one of the select colleges the employer has formed a partnership.
According to CNBC, someone who holds a bachelor’s degree will earn a median of $2.8 million over their lifetime, which is 75% more than if they had only a high school diploma. Although there are exceptions, having a college degree often equates to more income, which allows for long-term financial stability and a better opportunity to land the job in your desired and respective career field. However, despite the many benefits of attending college, college affordability is decreasing. Tuition can be an expensive bill that results in graduates being deep in student loan debt or others having to bypass college and settle for a less-desired job and pay.
As of November 2021, per the Education Data Initiative, the average college tuition in the United States was $35,720 per student per year. College cost has increased at an annual growth rate of 6.8%, resulting in the cost of attendance at higher education institutions to triple over the past 20 years. With college-related expenses steadily increasing, many companies are taking action by creating tuition assistance programs for employees as part of their benefits and perks offerings.
For employees interested in continuing education beyond high school and have the desire to enter into a degree program that could increase their lifetime earning potential, taking a job offer at one of the listed companies could mean having help paying a portion or all of their higher education expenses.
Walmart offers a chance at a debt-free education
Walmart announced in August 2021 that it would cover 100% of the cost of tuition and textbooks at select colleges and universities. As a result, Walmart is making a significant impact on more than 1 million U.S. part-time and full-time Walmart employees, including Sam Clubs associates, by offering them a chance at a debt-free education. In addition, Walmart is committed to investing in their employees by giving $1 billion for the next five years in areas of career-driven training and development.
Click here to learn more about Walmart’s Live Better U (LBU) education program.
Target covers education costs at more than 40 institutions
Target recently released its new education program to support its current workers who are currently (or plan on) pursuing higher education. The education program will offer Target employees a debt-free route of obtaining their undergraduate degrees starting Fall 2021 at more than 40 participating college institutions. A few participating institutions included in the program are the University of Arizona, Oregon State University, University of Denver, and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), including Morehouse College and Paul Quinn College.
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Target is helping its employees cover the costly expenses of college tuition, books, and other college-related fees, while also committing themselves to support employees pursuing their master’s degrees by paying up to $10,000 per year.
To learn more about the education program requirements for Target employees, click here.
UPS offers financial aid assistance through its Earn & Learn Program
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UPS is investing in its employees by helping them pay for college while also training them for a potential career within the company. The UPS Earn & Learn Program attracts students to work at their company while also paying for their schooling. Their education assistance program is designed to help part-time employees earn up to $25,000 to pay for their higher education costs.
Chick-fil-A assists with grants and scholarships
One of America’s leading fast-food restaurants, Chick-fil-A, has had a long-standing history of serving student team members by helping them to earn scholarships for college. Their scholarship giving started with Chick-fil-A’s founder S. Truett Cathy placing an empty mayonnaise jar container on the restaurant counter so that customers could help contribute to one of its team member’s college fund. That tradition has continued throughout the company’s history. Now Chick-fil-A awards their employees with two types of scholarships, the True Inspiration Scholarship worth $25,000 and the Leadership Scholarship worth $2,500.
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Chick-fil-A also helps its team members with grants to pay for school, and they even have a network of colleges and universities (public, private, and online) that offer tuition discounts. In some cases, families are eligible too.
Click here to learn more about Chick-fil-A’s scholarship requirements, grants, and tuition discounts.
The Money Wrap-Up
From the cost of room and board to textbooks, attending college can be expensive. But the good news is that apart from the companies already mentioned, an increasing number of corporations are offering financial aid for college to their employees as part of their job benefits. The best way to find out if your company offers an assistance program is to ask human resources, your manager, or go online to the company’s website and seek out information about potential scholarships or grants that you can apply.
More companies are prioritizing their employee’s needs, especially when it comes to their financial needs. So if you are a recent high school graduate or college student looking for a job, applying to work for a company that serves its team members in a way that fits their needs is always a good idea.