Amazon and Ivy Tech team up to offer free education for employee - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Amazon and Ivy Tech team up to offer free education for employees

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JEFFERSONVILLE, In. (WDRB) -- Employee's at Amazon's Fulfillment Center in Jeffersonville are being offered a free college education.

The company's Career Choice program pays up to 95% of an employee's tuition. This is pre-paid and is whether or not the skills are relevant to jobs at the warehouse. 

Amazon and Ivy Tech are announcing the expansion of the Jeffersonville Fulfillment center to include dedicated onsite classrooms. The classrooms are high-tech and have glass walls to inspire others to participate and generate encouragement from peers. Employees will use the classroom to participate in college classes, industry certification courses, college readiness programs and business skill seminars.

Pamela Sharp is a mother and grandmother who has worked at Amazon for three years. She's excited about the opportunity to go back to school for medical coding. 

The first classes at the Jeffersonville fulfillment center are Logistics and Information Technology as well as Medical Billing and Coding courses taught by a professor from Ivy Tech Corporate College. The school worked with Amazon to identify in-demand skills according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics and develop related educational programs for Amazon associates. 

The current 2,500 full-time employees at the facility are eligible to enroll in the onsite class or any other course related to high-demand fields after they have been with the company for one year. As part of the program, 95 percent of an employee's tuition is pre-paid up to $12,000 during four years as well as reimbursement for books, supplies and fees on the first day of class. According to the U.S. Department of Education, the average 2-year degree costs less than $9,000. 

Since the program launched, it has helped employees pursue degrees in game design and visual communications, nursing, IT programming and radiology. Top chosen fields of study for Amazon employees are computer and information technology, health and sciences, and accounting. 

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