Disney Spending $50M to Help Educate Over 80K Employees

Disney Spending $50M to Help Educate Over 80K Employees
Susan Dutca-Lovell

More than 80,000 hourly employees at Walt Disney Co. will be able to take online courses this fall as part of the company's $50 million Disney Aspire education investment program. Under the free college tuition program, Disney employees can take courses towards a high school diploma, college degree or vocational skill.

The "no strings attached" college program would allow employees to take classes in a field unrelated to their Disney jobs and enable them to move on from the company after obtaining their degrees. The online courses are the first rollout of the free college tuition program and employees will have the opportunity to take in-person classes at Valencia College – as well as other schools - beginning in January.

In addition to covering one-hundred percent of tuition upfront, the Disney Aspire program will also reimburse application fees and required books and materials, "removing the worry about paying to start or continue school."

Disney's free online college program will be administered through Guild Education, which is the same program used for Walmart's college tuition program. For the Disney Aspire program, Disney will spend $50 million initially and then pay up to $25 million annually in the future.

Disney's education initiative joins other large corporations that pay college tuition for employees, including Walmart, Starbucks, Chipotle, Taco Bell and Lowe's. To see if your employer offers college scholarships or free college tuition programs, conduct a free scholarship search or check out our list of Employer Scholarships.

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