With accumulated educational expenses often leaving graduates in debt long after graduation day celebrations have ended, today’s employers are stepping in to cushion the blow. This is a wise move in industries with high turnover rates or for companies where internal job promotions are encouraged.
Depending on your employer, state of residence and length of employment, teachers may be eligible for loan forgiveness for up to $37,500 through programs like the Teacher Education Loan (TEL) Program. Teachers are not the only school staff that are eligible for educational perks; for instance, Harvard offers its professional, administrative, support and teaching staff tuition assistance and substantial discounts on classes at the Harvard Extension School. The university also offers a 90 percent discount off the price of classes throughout the university and reimbursement if classes are taken at another school.
Mail/Package Delivery Employees
Part-time management employees at UPS (United Parcel Service) can receive up to $20,000 in tuition assistance through the company's Earn and Learn program. Other part-time employees are provided up to $15,000 toward their educational expenses.
The United States Postal Service also offers tuition assistance in unspecified amounts to its full-time employees.
FedEx offers a subsidy for the ongoing educational needs of its employees.
Restaurant/Food Industry Workers
TGI Friday’s helps its employees cover educational expenses by providing an array of options, from tuition reimbursement to grants. Burger King offers tuition assistance to its restaurant support center staff, and McDonald’s offers educational assistance to its management team.
According to Military.com, Armed Forces Tuition Assistance (TA) is provided to eligible military personnel and includes up to 100 percent tuition assistance for college courses taken while off duty.
Retail Sales Associates
Staples reimburses its employees for eligible educational expenses through their annual scholarship program. The reimbursement covers books, tuition, lab fees and more when employees are enrolled in a degree program or job-related course at an accredited college or university. Award limits for Staples are unspecified as of March 11, 2010.
Other retailers that offer tuition reimbursement include Best Buy (no award limits stated) and Lane Bryant’s parent company, Charming Shoppes Inc., which awards employees up to $3,000 per calendar year for approved curriculum.
Internet-based Company Employees
Google offers its academically talented employees (those who maintain a B or better in all courses) up to $12,000 per calendar year in tuition reimbursement funding. Yahoo covers up to $5,000 per year for tuition, books and other related educational expenses.