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Companies That Pay for College

by University Of Michigan Ann Arbor
November 22, 2023
8 min read
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Did you know some companies can actually pay for college? Pursuing a college education can be a rewarding new chapter in your life, though it does not come without some challenges. Most people's biggest concern is how they will pay for their college education. Applying for loans and scholarships may seem like an obvious choice, and also relying on any financial aid your institution may grant you.

What many students may not know, though, is companies and organizations offer to pay for college tuition through different tuition reimbursement and tuition assistance programs. Many students work through college to pay for their expenses, so why not work at a company that pays for your college education as well? In this Bold article, I discuss different companies that offer tuition reimbursement and assistance programs to help you save on the cost of your education. 

Scholarships are a great way to help with the cost of tuition, sign up for a free account today to find tons of scholarships for all types of students!

companies that pay for college expenses

Differences Between Tuition Reimbursement and Tuition Assistance

Not all companies pay for college in the same way. The two main ways companies will aid employees with college costs are through tuition reimbursement and tuition assistance programs. Though they do sound similar, they work in different ways.

Tuition reimbursement programs are what it sounds like. The company you are employed by will offer you reimbursement for the program or college costs after you have completed the courses or after a semester has finished and you have received your grades. The upfront educational costs are up to the employee to fulfill.

Tuition assistance programs are different in that they offer upfront financial assistance for your college tuition or other educational costs. Tuition assistance programs may place less of a burden on the student to pay for college costs out of pocket because the company covers it at the forefront. Of course, there are usually requirements that are expected to be followed by the employee, like keeping a certain grade point average or participating in certain degree programs.

Want to learn more ways to save on your college education? Check out our scholarship blog! You'll find numerous different articles on not just the financials of college education but everything else that comes with the journey.

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Different Expectations by Companies that Pay for College

Each company has its own set of rules that employees who seek financial assistance for education must abide by. Companies may expect you to follow certain degree or educational paths that align with their vision or business model, for example. A certain number of hours may have to be maintained or already worked by the employee to be eligible for tuition reimbursement or assistance by the employee.

Like other workplace benefits, you may also have to be a full-time employee to be eligible. However, many companies do offer tuition assistance programs to part-time employees as well. Of course, a certain grade point average is expected to be maintained in order to keep the financial assistance. However, many of these different expectations vary at each company. 

If you are looking to work at a company that pays for your college degree, make sure to compare each company's package to see which one works best for your educational career and goals.

Worried about how you'll cover your college costs? Saving money in college can certainly be a start! Check out this article with tons of different tips on how to save money as a college student.

jobs that pay for college

Taco Bell

Starting from your first day as a Taco Bell employee, you are eligible for their education benefit. Like other companies that pay for college, Taco Bell is partnered with a company called Guild Education. Guild Education has a platform in which you would sign up to manage your education benefits once you start working for Taco Bell.

So, what does Taco Bell's partnership with Guild Education actually offer? Taco Bell offers numerous benefits that can fit your educational journey. Like other companies partnered with Guild Education, there are over 100 programs that Taco Bell approves for full tuition coverage. If you choose one of these programs, your tuition is fully covered by Taco Bell.

There are over 350 programs that are available through Guild Education that Taco Bell will also financially support, but not fully. Taco Bell offers up to $5,250 for programs found in the Guild catalog. Any extra fees, such as textbooks, can be reimbursed or are already covered by Taco Bell.

Not only does Taco Bell financially support your college education, but also offers other means of support, like being matched with an advisor who can help you with your educational pursuits. You can also earn credits toward your degree with Taco Bell training.

Many of the companies that pay for college offer fully paid and fully online programs. If that interests you, be sure to check out our list of schools that offer fully online degree programs. We'll also answer some common questions that you may have!


Working for Apple is a dream for many, and as an employee, you are eligible for their tuition reimbursement program.

If you are an eligible full-time employee at Apple, you can receive up to $5,250 for educational expenses through the Apple Educational Reimbursement program. You can use this reimbursement to pay for college costs such as tuition. It can also be used for books, required software, and other educational fees. It is not applicable for costs such as admission fees, test fees, parking, and living costs.

Because it is a reimbursement, though, the upfront cost must be covered by the student. Then, a student would need to apply for reimbursement through Apple and provide the required documents, which usually include transcripts and proof of payment. It is best to reach out to your financial aid office to get the correct forms.

jobs that par for college expenses


Being a Chipotle employee does not only mean free burritos and bowls but also a debt-free degree! Chipotle is a Guild Education partner, which means that as an employee, you have access to hundreds of educational programs.

Like other Guild Education partners, Chipotle has select programs that fully cover tuition. There are over 300 programs at 20-plus institutions to choose from. Choose from different areas such as technology, healthcare, business, and much more! Chipotle supports undergraduate and graduate degrees and offers $5,250 per year for both degree programs if they do not fall under one of the fully funded Guild degree programs.

What is really great about Chipotle, though, is that they offer a $5,250 tuition reimbursement for programs that are not affiliated with Guild Education. This gives students more options, especially if they have already started their college careers.

You may have your education costs covered, but that is not the only challenge that comes with college. Learn how to successfully transition to college with this wonderful article by

jobs that pay tuition


Target is another company that has partnered with Guild Education to offer its employees education benefits. If you land a job at Target, they could potentially pay for part or all of your degree! Not only do you receive the benefits and experience of working at this favorable store, but you also can worry less about how you will fund your college education.

Whether you are a full-time or part-time employee, you are eligible for assistance from the Target company. If you are thinking of pursuing a degree or program in the field of business, a job at Target may be just what you need.

Target offers easy and free access to over 250 different business-related programs at different levels. So whether you are chasing your master's degree or it is your first time in college, Target's tuition assistance program will definitely benefit you! This falls under their "debt-free degrees" option. Guild Education pays the institutions directly, so you do not have to worry about covering the costs upfront.

If a program you are interested in does not fall under the "debt-free degrees" option but is still within the Guild Education network, Target will pay those institutions. Up to $5,250 is offered for non-master's degrees, and up to $10,000 is offered for master's degrees. Target will also cover out-of-pocket costs like textbook fees for educational programs in the Guild catalog.

Worried that your employer won't cover the full cost of your degree program? has you covered! Find thousands of exclusive scholarships to apply to in our scholarship directory.

Best Buy

Best Buy is another company that offers a tuition reimbursement program. However, they are a little more strict on the employees who are eligible. You must work 32 hours per week and have been working for six months before you can apply for reimbursement.

If you are an undergraduate student, you can receive up to $3,500, and if you are a graduate student, you can receive up to $5,250 per year. Best Buy will also cover textbook fees and other educational costs up to $325 for undergraduate programs and $525 for graduate programs.

As an employee, you also receive an employee discount, so not only can you get help for college costs, but you also can get all the technology you need at a lower price. That's another way Best Buy can help pay for your college!

companies that pay for college tuition

Frequently Asked Questions About Companies that Pay for College

Is tuition reimbursement or tuition assistance better?

This is entirely up to you! Tuition reimbursement can be a little more flexible as the funds are not directly linked to a specific program or college. However, you do have to cover the cost upfront before the funds are reimbursed to you. Tuition reimbursement programs usually do not cover the cost of your entire educational assistance program, so you must find funding elsewhere.

Tuition assistance, on the other hand, usually offers "debt-free" programs, which means that certain degrees are fully paid for. This does limit what you can study if you do want your educational costs fully covered by the company you work for.

Are part-time employees eligible for tuition reimbursement and tuition assistance?

That entirely depends on the company that you work for and their requirements in their tuition assistance/reimbursement program. Companies will usually have an expectation of certain hours you must work each week to be eligible. There are certain companies that will cover your tuition costs if you are a part-time employee. It is important to look through different companies and their policies to find the best fit for you!

What costs do companies that pay for college cover?

Again, this does depend on the company. However, the standard is that the funds provided to an employee can be used on tuition and other required fees, such as textbook costs. Funds can not usually be used on personal costs such as parking fees and living costs. Depending on the company, the funds may be directly sent to your school account, so they may only be used for certain costs.

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University Of Michigan Ann Arbor

About Safa

Safa is a great writer and researcher. She brings a unique blend of creativity and analytical skills to our writing team, honed through her diverse experiences in both literary and media fields.

Safa is an undergraduate student at the University of Michigan majoring in English and Creative Writing with a minor in User Experience Design.


Safa has always loved writing and reading. She loves to write poetry and informational articles. She was an English summer intern at Michigan News where she assisted in planning, researching, and writing news articles. With the knowledge she gained at this internship, she became a skilled article writer. 

She now works for Michigan News as a media assistant, focusing on graphics and social media writing. Safa’s poetry collection, “Let Us Get Lost in the Valleys,” was a first-place winner of the Hopwood program's Keith Taylor Award for Excellence in Poetry by the University of Michigan in 2023. She also won the Seham Elasmar Memorial Scholarship for writing and media from the Islamic Scholarship Fund to support her English education. Safa's experience and passion for writing allow her to provide students with valuable information and insights.

Safa is no longer with the Writing Team, but we continue to value and appreciate her contributions.

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