I often speak about our family’s move across the country to access a free tuition program through my husband’s employer, but these kinds of benefits are sometimes available to our teens too. Your teen’s part-time job in high school or college can have big rewards.
Tuition programs vary dramatically, there really isn’t a “one size fits all” way they work- but to give you a very simple explanation, there are companies that will pay for your teen’s tuition (full or part) while they work as employees. This is different from a scholarship, which is often a one time gift and the scholarship provider doesn’t expect anything in return.
Tuition programs usually require a relationship between the employee and employer.
Tuition programs may require working a specific number of hours per week, a commitment to work after the tuition payment is made, etc., but make no mistake, this is REAL MONEY that can help your family obtain a debt-free college degree. My husband’s bachelor’s degree and master’s degree were funded by his employer (two different ones) and my oldest son’s current employer is paying his tuition.
Our North Carolina Homeschooling for College Credit moderator shared the announcement about McDonald’s yesterday. They’ve expanded their tuition program, so this is a great opportunity to put these kinds of benefits in one place for you to access. Most teens will work part-time during high school, and there are dozens of companies that will allow your teen to continue working part-time during college – all while receiving tuition benefits.
You may remember the study from Boston University last year that followed the GPA of students who worked a shift or two per week during college. They had higher GPAs across the board. Of course, working too much correlated with lower GPAs, so we’re talking about part-time jobs that fit in and around school work – not a job that squeezes it out.
Reducing college costs by as much as possible is a bit of a hobby of mine! If your goal is to reduce your teen’s student loan debt to ZERO, make time to investigate my previous posts:
Thanks to Clarks.com posting this great fast-food summary:
This tuition-reimbursement offer is for available to both full-timers and part-timers after one year on the job.
Employees get tuition, books, and fees reimbursed by Chipotle — up to the IRS limit of $5,250 per calendar year.
Chipotle also has a partnership through Guild Education that lets you earn up to 38 and 44 credit hours through on-the-job training.
Kentucky Fried Chicken
For hourly team members and shift supervisors with at least six months of service, KFC offers the REACH Educational Grant Program.
The program provides college tuition assistance via grants of $2,000 and $2,500. Grant recipients can attend any accredited two-year or four-year college or a trade/vocational school.
Managers, meanwhile, can receive grants of up to $3,000 through KFC’s REACH initiative.
Winners are selected by a competitive application process and may reapply each year.
Through a partnership with Excelsior College, Pizza Hut offers the Life Unboxed EDU program.
Excelsior offers tuition discounts of 45% on undergraduate studies and 15% on graduate studies for Pizza Hut employees.
Similar to Chipotle, Pizza Hut’s tuition assistance offer also allows you to earn up to 63 credits for on-the-job training.
The Starbucks College Achievement Plan is perhaps the most generous of any restaurant tuition assistance plan. You basically get a free education through a partnership with Arizona State University!
Full tuition reimbursement is available for every year of college, culminating in you earning a bachelor’s degree.
The specific details of the plan are available here.
Just like Chipotle, Taco Bell has teamed up with Guild Education for certain education benefits.
Employees get tuition, books and fees reimbursed up to the IRS limit of $5,250 per calendar year. There’s also the opportunity to earn college credit for on-the-job training.
Thanks to the corporate tax savings under the new tax law, McDonald’s says it’s committed to increasing college tuition benefits for employees to the tune of $150 million over five years.
Eligible employees receive upto $2,500/year, managers, meanwhile, will have access to $3,000. There are no lifetime caps on this perk, and the super-sized benefit takes effect May 1, 2018 and will be retroactive to January 1, 2018.
Employees will be required to be with McDonald’s for 90 days before being allowed to take advantage of this benefit. Employees who want tuition assistance will only need to put in 15 hours minimum a week instead of the previous requirement for 20 hours a week.