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Walmart Adds Trade Skills to Employee Tuition Program

June 11, 2020

Walmart two years ago created a debt-free college tuition benefit for the retail company's 1.5 million U.S. employees. Since then, roughly 25,000 Walmart and Sam's Club employees have used the Live Better U benefit, which features online degree programs at a price of $365 per year -- or $1 per day for participants.

The company works with Guild Education to administer the program, which Guild offers with its university partners.

Walmart today announced that it was adding in-demand skilled trade and digital skills offerings to the benefit program. In a statement, Guild said Walmart would offer online courses through Penn Foster (an online K-12 and college credential provider) for six certificates in skilled trades, including facilities maintenance, HVAC/refrigeration and construction. The benefit also now will include 19 certificate programs from eCornell and Southern New Hampshire University in digital skills, such as data fluency and decision making.

Employees, including part-time workers, now also will be eligible for the benefits on their first day of employment.

In a statement, Walmart said,

LBU is designed to support working adult learners and meets associates where they are on their educational journey by focusing on degree completion through a number of supportive elements, free student coaching, college credit for Walmart training and career pathways for LBU graduates. Regardless of which path an associate chooses, those who take advantage of LBU have one thing in common -- they are earning a degree or certificate along with a paycheck, without lifelong student debt.


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