ANN ARBOR – Hourly Amazon employees who are students, or thinking of becoming students, at Washtenaw Community College can now get their education paid for.
The Ann Arbor community college announced on Wednesday that it was selected by the online retail giant to be an education partner for its Career Choice program.
The program provides access to education and skill opportunities to hourly employees who have worked for 90 days or more at Amazon. Opportunities include pre-paid academic degrees, tuition funds and professional development classes.
“Developing the current and future workforce is one of our primary missions, and we are proud of this opportunity to partner with Amazon to provide high quality educational options that will ultimately benefit employees and families,” said WCC President Dr. Rose B. Bellanca in a release.
Amazon employs around 26,000 people within 16 facilities in Michigan. It is investing $1.2 billion in the United States to improve the skills of more than 300,000 of its employees by 2025.
Those using the Career Choice program can access annual program funds for as long as they remain with Amazon, and do not need to pay them back, WCC officials said.
Additionally, education paths at the community college do not need to be related to employee positions.
“We’re looking forward to Washtenaw Community College coming on board as an education partner for Career Choice, adding to the hundreds of best-in-class offerings available to our employees,” said Amazon Career Choice program Global Program Lead Tammy Thiemann in a release.
“We’re committed to empowering our employees by providing them access to the education and training they need to grow their careers, whether that’s with us or elsewhere. We have intentionally cultivated a partner network of third-party educators and employers committed to providing excellent education, job placement resources, and continuous improvements to the experience. Today, over 80,000 Amazon employees around the world have already participated in Career Choice and we’ve seen first-hand how it can transform their lives,” Thiemann added.
WCC currently offers 137 associate degrees and professional certificates, 45 of which can be completed online.
Learn more about the Career Choice program’s impact at WCC here.