Dear Commons Community,
Starbucks and Arizona State University will be announcing a new program, the Starbucks College Achievement Plan, today that provides tuition assistance to more than 100,000 of its employees. As reported in The Chronicle of Higher Education:
“Starbucks is teaming up with Arizona State University on an exclusive program that could send thousands of its baristas, store managers, and other employees to ASU Online for their undergraduate degrees, with the coffee company picking up about three-quarters of the tuition tab.
The unusual program, the Starbucks College Achievement Plan, will be available to more than 100,000 of its employees, as long as they enroll as full-time students. The partnership, which could cost Starbucks hundreds of millions of dollars a year, is likely to add luster to the company’s reputation for corporate social responsibility. It could also be a welcome enrollment jolt to ASU Online, which has about 10,000 distance-education students and aspires to enroll 10 times that many.
Howard Schultz, chairman and chief executive of Starbucks, and President Michael M. Crow of Arizona State, are scheduled to announce the new program on Monday in New York…
…Mr. Schultz said providing educational benefits “with no strings attached” was an extension of the company’s culture and values. Employees will not have to commit to remain at the company past graduation, he said, but he expects the new benefit will actually lower attrition and attract new people. He said it would also demonstrate “the role and responsibility of a public company” at a time when education matters and “so many people are being left behind.”
Congratulations Mr. Schultz and Starbucks!