All this talk about pumpkin spiced everything has made me a little tired of Starbucks, but it seems like the company isn't so bad after all. In June, Starbucks announced its College Achievement Plan, a partnership with Arizona State University that would allow qualified Starbucks employees to attend college. On Tuesday, the company announced that over 1,000 Starbucks employees have enrolled in fall courses as the first round of students in the program.
The Starbucks College Achievement Plan was some welcome news in the face of the stark reality of national student loan debt — which now totals more than $1 trillion dollars, making it more than the national credit card debt. However, the program won't completely relieve the financial burden for school for all participants.
The program, which is for Starbucks employees who work at least 20 hours per week, will provide employees entering with junior and senior status full tuition reimbursement for each year of coursework they complete. Those who enter as freshmen and sophomores will receive a partial scholarship and need-based financial aid. According to Starbucks, nearly 70 percent of those enrolled through the program for the upcoming fall semester at ASU are at junior and senior level.
Other benefits of the program include an enrollment coach, financial aid counselor and academic advisor for each student. Starbucks' first students will begin classes on October 15 for ASU's Fall B semester. While you may miss your favorite barista when she starts spending more time in class, I think we can all be psyched about this educational opportunity.