Starting college is exciting. You are starting a new chapter in your life and paving the way for a better future. Unfortunately, college tuition is extremely expensive. The cost of tuition is always rising and it can be daunting to find a way to pay for it.

Tuition reimbursements are programs that employers offer to help cover the costs of higher education. There are tuition reimbursement programs available to students, which make the cost seem less frightening.

Why Do Employers Offer Tuition Reimbursement Programs

Companies want employees that excel at their work. If the employee has the skills and knowledge to succeed in their work, then the company can exceed as a whole. Education is important in this step to success.

A tuition reimbursement program may cost the company money in the short-term, but they will have more loyal and educated employees. With knowledge comes success and a successful employee means a successful company.

Tuition Reimbursement Requirements

The requirements to qualify for tuition reimbursement programs vary from employer to employer. Typically, you have to meet certain requirements to be eligible.

• Most companies require you to be employed full-time.
• You are employed for a certain amount of time, typically one year.
• A minimum GPA or average grade level that you must hold during your education.
• A signed contract may be required stating you will stay a certain amount of time after your education is complete.

Types of Reimbursement Offered

The levels of reimbursement offered also vary from employer to employer. Some companies offer a percentage of reimbursement for your tuition. If you are lucky, your company will offer 100%. Other companies may offer a specific dollar amount instead.

Quick Trip, the convenience store chain, offers up to $2000 a year for tuition reimbursement.

There are out-of-pocket expenses that companies may not pay such as textbooks and supplies needed for the courses you are taking. In addition, some companies will not pay for courses that are unrelated to your job.

An important thing to remember is that you may have to pay for your tuition up front. Some colleges and universities offer a deferment of tuition costs but most expect a percentage or all of the tuition for the semester upfront.

What to Do if Your Employer Does Not Offer a Tuition Reimbursement Program

You decide to further your education, but you find out that your employer does not offer any tuition reimbursement program. Approach your employer with reasons to have employee’s tuition, either in whole or in part, as being good for the company. Some of the reasons you could present are the following:

  • There will be improved work performance with innovative ideas learned through higher education.
  • The company’s image will be improved by having higher educated employees.
  • More loyalty to the company because of the educational incentives offered.
  • You will be able to take on more challenging work due to your education instead of the company having to hire additional staff to do that work.

Write down all these ideas beforehand, as well as being prepared for any problems the employer may come up with as to why tuition reimbursement is a bad idea. Make sure you have solutions to any problem they may come up. Practice what you want to say before you meet with your employer regarding tuition reimbursement.

Being prepared will make for a much more convincing argument, than stumbling through what you want to say.

Tuition reimbursement programs are a great way to aid you in the high cost of your college education. Check with the human resources department in your company to see what programs are available and what requirements are needed.

Taking the steps to meet these requirements is worth it to lower the cost of your education.