ATLANTA, Georgia - The UPS Earn and Learn program - an innovative combination of part-time work opportunities, tuition assistance and forgivable loans - is helping Hispanic students overcome the traditional financial barriers they often face in earning a college degree.
Junior Cueva, a 20-year-old Peruvian-American and a part-time supervisor at UPS’s facility in Parsippany, N.J., is challenging those statistics. Despite hefty tuition bills, Cueva is committed to earning his degree in computer science and has turned to UPS for help in footing his educational expenses. Through the company’s Earn and Learn program, Cueva and other students working part time receive up to $3,000 in tuition assistance and $2,000 in forgivable loans per calendar year.
"Working at UPS has not only enabled me, but also my family, to receive several benefits," says Cueva, who is now in his second year of college at Essex Community College. "With Earn and Learn, I am able to work and go to school at the same time. Plus, there are plenty of opportunities to advance within the company - I started as a part-time package handler and now I’m a part-time supervisor overseeing several employees."
Part-time employees are eligible for Earn and Learn the day they are hired and the program is offered in addition to starting pay of $8.50-$9.50 per hour and benefits such as full health coverage for the employee and their family, paid vacation and a 401(k) plan.
According to Hispanic Scholarship Fund President and CEO Sara Martinez Tucker, initiatives such as the UPS Earn and Learn program are critical to increasing the number of Hispanics earning college degrees.
"Creative programs like UPS’s Earn and Learn encourage and enable Hispanic students to pursue a college education by providing them financial assistance and flexible work hours that complement their class schedule," said Tucker. "This type of innovative approach by corporations is key to increasing the number of Hispanics earning college degrees."
UPS has been named among FORTUNE magazine’s "Best Companies for Minorities" for four consecutive years and has helped more than 30,000 students across the country offset the costs of college tuition. To date, UPS has invested more than $47 million in the Earn and Learn program. Funds may be used towards tuition, approved mandatory fees and book fees of up to $65 per class.
The Earn and Learn program is available to part-time UPS employees at 51 locations throughout the country, including major cities such as Dallas, Los Angeles, St. Louis, Boston and Philadelphia. Participants include traditional and non-traditional students, such as retirees and moms re-entering the workforce, who can combine college and flexible evening shifts.
More information about the UPS Earn and Learn program and a complete list of cities where the program is available can be found at www.upsjobs.com.
United Parcel Service (NYSE: UPS), the world’s largest express carrier and package delivery company, operates in more than 200 countries and territories and employs more than 370,000 people worldwide. The company’s commitment to its employees has been recognized by several notable organizations including Your Money magazine ("America’s Best Part-Time Job") and FORTUNE magazine ("America’s Best Companies for Minorities"). In 2001, UPS won the nation’s only presidential award for corporate leadership, The Conference Board’s Ron Brown Award for Corporate Citizenship, in recognition of its employee programs.
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