Having spent far too much time away from school, last year I finally decided to return to improve my skills and make myself more marketable in the job market. My first attempt, fresh out of high school was less than impressive. I spent way too many hours playing with my friends and not nearly enough time hitting the books. It happens to lots of us, but not everyone gets the opportunity to return and has the courage to take it. That’s why I could not be happier that my employer is kind enough to offer tuition reimbursement. Without it, I’m not sure I would even be back in school at all.
What is Tuition Reimbursement?
Just as it sounds, tuition reimbursement is something that many employers offer as a way to pay back employees for education expenses. Those who choose to participate still have to pay out of pocket for the courses they take. When the course is over, the employee can get back some or all of the tuition expenses. At some institutions, students with financial constraints may qualify to defer payment until their coursework is complete.
Some employers choose to go above and beyond tuition alone, and reimburse other expenses associated with higher education. The program my company offers not only covers my tuition, but also covers the cost of my books and my Internet connection, as long as I can prove that at least one course I am enrolled in is online or “web-assisted,” meaning some coursework takes place over the web.
Is There a Catch?
Depending on the employer, conditions for reimbursement may apply. Luckily, dealing with tuition reimbursement guidelines is not quite as difficult as dealing with an insurance company or trying to redeem a store rebate. Most often, the conditions are easy to satisfy.