Grants from the federal government and from each state are great options for college students, but what if you’re out of college and working at a job already? Maybe you’ve decided you want to go back to school again and earn another degree, but you just don’t think you have the money to pay for it. Your employer might cover the cost of school for you – trying talking to them about educational grants.
Educational assistance programs and programs to study abroad vary depending on the employer. Some companies take an interest in their employees’ professional development and the ways the extra education could improve the productivity of their company. Some other companies don’t openly promote educational grants information and don’t encourage their employees to take advantage of the benefit. Studies show that only a fraction of employees eligible for assistance with school take advantage of it because they aren’t aware of the program.
What exactly will a company cover when it comes to your costs? The best educational grants programs would cover full tuition up front for any type of degree and provide funding for books and other materials necessary for each course. This is often not the case though. Employers generally tend to have some guidelines as to how much assistance they’ll provide. The employee may have to choose from a defined list of colleges, enroll in a program that is related to their job at the company, pay the tuition themselves and wait for reimbursement, pay any tuition over a certain dollar amount, or pay back the tuition if they ever leave the company.
If your employer doesn’t currently have a program in place to assist with the costs of getting a degree, or if you work at a small company that handles requests for assistance on an individual basis, you should prepare what to say when you make your case to your boss. You should first make an appointment to speak to them. Take the time to meet with them one-on-one without other distractions surrounding you. Do research before the meeting in order to determine how you would go about getting the degree and how furthering your education would benefit the company by providing a greater level of skill and more motivation to dedicate your time to working hard for your employer.