Starbucks Partners With Arizona State University to Aid Employees

Starbucks Partners With Arizona State University to Aid Employees
  • Opening Intro -

    Starbucks will soon be sending thousands of its employees to Arizona State University to finish their degrees.

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Innovative education partnership is available to part-time employees.

At least to ASU Online, the Internet side of the university.

The coffee giant announced earlier this month that it has teamed up with Arizona State University to help company employees — including your favorite barista —finish their college degrees. The unique program will enable junior and senior college students to get their degrees online for free and for freshman and sophomore students to receive discounted education as well.

Starbucks College Achievement Plan

Formally known as the Starbucks College Achievement Plan, the initiative was designed to help Starbucks employees finish their college education. In a related press release, Starbucks notes that nearly half of Americans who begin their college education never complete their degrees. Many simply cannot afford their tuition or are unable to balance work with their educational pursuits.

Starbucks is making the program available to employees who work at least 20 hours per week at its company operated stores and do not yet have a bachelor’s degree. Students that are admitted to Arizona State University as juniors or seniors will receive full tuition reimbursement for each year of coursework that they complete. Partial and needs-based scholarships are available for freshman and sophomore students.

Those workers that complete their degrees are not obligated to stay with Starbucks beyond their graduation. They are free to pursue their careers with no obligation to reimburse the company.

Pursuing the American Dream

Speaking at a conference in New York, Starbucks President and CEO Howard Schultz noted, “In the last few years, we have seen the fracturing of the American Dream. There’s no doubt, the inequality within the country has created a situation where many Americans are being left behind. The question for all of us is — should we accept that, or should we try and do something about it?”

Even with the employee option to leave the company after graduation, Schultz sees Starbucks benefiting as well. Said Schultz, “Our investment in high-quality education will attract and retain passionate partners who will move our company and our economy forward.”

Beyond the financial support, Starbucks employees will benefit from a retention plan that will help them finish their education. Participating students (known as partners) will have a dedicated enrollment coach, a financial aid counselor and an academic advisor to support them through graduation. Also included is an adaptive learning services program to help students complete their studies at a pace that is right for them. Moreover, they will benefit from networking and community-building opportunities along with other resources to be announced later.

Markle Economic Future Initiative

Starbucks said that its alliance with ASU was inspired by participation in the Markle Economic Future Initiative, co-chaired by Howard Schultz and Markle President Zoë Baird, with Dr. Michael Crow as one of its members. The Markle Initiative’s mission is to expand opportunities that help Americans succeed in the global digital economy as they pursue the American Dream.

See Also27 Ways to Save at College

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Categories: Campus News