Companies Help Employees Pay Tuition—but Few Accept the Offer

"Companies are stepping up efforts to help employees get academic degrees. So why aren't more employees taking advantage?" The Wall Street Journal reports.

"McDonald's Corp. recently announced it would expand the eligibility requirements for its tuition-assistance program. Walmart Inc., Yum Brands Inc.'s Taco Bell, Kroger Co. , meanwhile, all have announced new tuition-assistance programs in recent months. The trend reflects efforts to attract and retain workers in a competitive labor market and to help them meet the changing demands of their jobs, says Jaime Fall, the director of UpSkill America at the Aspen Institute, an initiative that works with employers to promote training and advancement programs.

But there is a disconnect here. While about 90% of midsize and large employers offer some kind of tuition-reimbursement—though it typically doesn't cover full tuition cost—less than 10% of workers at companies that offer the initiatives use them annually, according to estimates by Willis Towers Watson, a risk-management and advisory company.

One reason is that even as companies expand eligibility requirements for such programs, the information doesn't always get to the employees, says Mary Tavarozzi, managing director, group benefits practice at Willis Towers Watson. In addition, Ms. Tavarozzi says, given time pressures and high levels of student debt, workers may be hesitant to commit time and money to another degree.

Here's what workers need to consider to maximize the benefits from such programs."

NASFAA's "Headlines" section highlights media coverage of financial aid to help members stay up to date with the latest news. Inclusion in Today's News does not imply endorsement of the material or guarantee the accuracy of information presented.

 

Publication Date: 6/13/2018

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