Amazon to cover most of employees’ tuition

Employees must work for Amazon for three years before receiving tuition benefits.

Amazon will pay up to $2,000 for employees taking online or in-person college courses while working toward an associate’s degree or a technical certification, and educators expect other corporations to replicate the model if it proves successful.

Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s CEO, used the homepage of his company’s website to announce that Amazon warehouse employees would soon have 95 percent of their tuition prepaid if they work toward a two-year degree or certificate in engineering, IT, health care, transportation, and a range of other academic concentrations.

Educators and ed-tech officials said Amazon’s tuition offer differs from similar corporate programs in two ways: The company will only prepay tuition for students entering fields deemed in-demand and high-paying by the federal government—rather than academic areas related to the company’s mission—and the program will cover the vast majority of course and book costs, not just a fraction.…Read More

Angry students protest cuts to schools, colleges

Anger over rising tuition and school budget cuts boiled over as students across the country staged rowdy demonstrations that led to clashes with police and the rush-hour shutdown of a major freeway in California, reports the Associated Press. Students, teachers, parents, and school employees rallied and marched at college campuses, public parks, and government buildings in several U.S. cities in what was called the March 4 Day of Action to Defend Public Education. In Oakland, protesters evaded police and walked onto Interstate 880 near downtown Oakland just before 5 p.m., forcing the closure of the freeway in both directions for more than an hour and causing traffic to back up for miles. Police arrested more than 150 people who blocked the freeway after breaking off from a peaceful rally at Oakland City Hall, said Officer Sam Morgan, a spokesman for the California Highway Patrol. Faced with plunging tax revenue and massive budget shortfalls, states have slashed funding to K-12 schools and universities. In response, school districts are laying off teachers, expanding class sizes, and scrapping academic programs, while many colleges have cancelled classes, furloughed instructors, and raised tuition. Experts say schools and colleges could face more severe financial problems over the next few years as they drain federal stimulus money that temporarily prevented widespread layoffs and classroom cuts…

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