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UTC Invests More Than $200 Million to Send Employees College, Graduate School

UTC Invests More Than $200 Million to Send Employees College, Graduate School

Published 04-24-01

Submitted by United Technologies Corporation

HARTFORD, Conn., April 24, 2001 - United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) has surpassed the $200 million mark in spending on college and graduate school education for its employees, the company reported today.

UTC paid for 13,449 employees to attend college in 2000, raising the company's total investment in its Employee Scholar Program to $230.75 million since its inception in 1996. That investment exceeds by 59 percent the dollar value of scholarships awarded by Yale University and Dartmouth College over a similar period.

The program - which employee benefits experts have called unrivaled in its scope - pays the entire cost of a college education for full- and part-time UTC employees and was initiated by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer George David in his quest to have "the best educated work force on the planet."

More than 7,000 employees have earned associate's, bachelor's or graduate degrees through the program - three times the number of students who graduated from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) during the same five-year period. Nearly 16 percent of the company's U.S. work force participated last year, and more than 1,700 received degrees.

Participation among employees outside the United States has soared 90 percent since eligibility was extended in 1997. More than 2,100 non-U.S. employees went to college in 2000. Of the total number of graduates last year, 12 percent work in the company's international operations.

Besides paying for tuition, books and fees, the company rewards graduates with UTC stock. Employees earning bachelor's or graduate degrees receive $10,000 worth of stock, while those earning associate's degrees get $5,000. Employees outside the United States receive stock awards based on their salaries, with those earning bachelor's or graduate degrees receiving 50% more than those earning associate's degrees. Based on recent prices and split adjustments, stock awards since 1996 have totaled 1.13 million shares with a value of $89.3 million.

Students also receive up to three hours a week in paid time off for classes and can study any field they choose - not just work-related subjects - at any accredited school. They must earn at least a "C" in each course. Laid-off employees are also eligible for a full year of schooling, while those who are laid off because their work is relocated farther than 50 miles can participate for four years starting on their date of separation.

Experts say the program is unique in its scope. A recent Associated Press story quoted Jon Van Cleve, of the Hewett Associates consulting firm, as calling the program "very leading edge," particularly for its stock rewards. He described UTC as "real progressive and certainly on the forefront."

Deloris Drakes, manager of financial planning and analysis at UTC's Otis Elevator headquarters in Farmington, Conn., is working toward a master's degree in education. "The willingness to shoulder a social responsibility for its employees says a lot about the company," she said. "The Employee Scholar Program encourages employees to go to school for retraining, which better positions them for upward mobility within the company or for job displacement. The company cannot guarantee its employees lifelong employment. But the hassle-free opportunity to further their education is the next best thing."

Nils Dahl, a design engineer for Pratt & Whitney's F-119/F-22 program in East Hartford, Conn., is pursuing both a master's degree in computer science and a master's of business administration. The 31-year-old Dahl said the degrees should help him obtain the experience he needs to qualify for management positions at the company.

United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., provides a broad range of high-technology products and support services to the building and aerospace industries through its six subsidiaries: Pratt & Whitney, Sikorsky, Otis, Carrier, Hamilton Sundstrand and International Fuel Cells. UTC was recently named a "Most Admired" company by Fortune magazine, based on its innovative spirit, social responsibility, employee talent and other criteria.

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United Technologies Corporation

United Technologies Corporation

United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company that provides high technology products and services to the building and aerospace industries.

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