Walmart foots the bill for 100% of employees’ college tuition and books

The company is making its Live Better U program completely free starting August 16
By: | July 27, 2021
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Walmart announced Tuesday that it will pay for 100% of its employees’ tuition and books starting August 16.

The initiative is part of the company’s Live Better U program, which previously cost employees $1 per day. That fee will be waived for nearly 1.5 million part-time and full-time Walmart and Sam’s Club employees, in order to help them earn college degrees or learn a trade without going into debt.

In a Tuesday press release, the retailer emphasized its commitment to investing nearly $1 billion over the next five years in “career-driven training and development.”

“This investment is another way we can support our associates to pursue their passion and purpose while removing the barriers that too often keep adult working learners from obtaining degrees,” said Lorraine Stomski, senior vice president of learning and leadership at Walmart.

The company is also adding new academic partners, including Johnson & Wales University, the University of Denver and the University of Arizona. It already has partnerships with Brandman University, Purdue University Global, Southern New Hampshire University, Wilmington University and Voxy EnGen.

Walmart’s LBU program launched in 2018; since then, more than 52,000 employees have participated in the program and 8,000 have graduated. This summer, nearly 28,000 employees have been active in an LBU program. Employees are eligible to participate in the program on their first day of work at Walmart.