Target, Walmart to pay 100% tuition, books for employees

When finding a perfect job, there are many important benefits to look out for. 

Some benefits include insurance, paid time off and a retirement plan. 

But what about paid college tuition? 

Walmart and Target have recently announced they will pay 100% of college tuition at certain universities for their employees. They will also pay for books. 

This comes in response to a worker shortage. 

The coronavirus pandemic has made finding workers nearly impossible. 

Many companies have started coming out with incentives such as these to help attract and retain workers.

Marla Herrington, the Financial Aid Services director, feels these programs are great for students because they can help reduce the amount of loans and stress students have. 

“Many students have no other option except student loans to pay for their degrees,” said Herrington. “[These programs can] give them the means to pursue dreams they thought were out of their reach.” 

However, there are cons to programs like these. 

Ariana Brown, a speech language pathology graduate student, agrees with Herrington but is skeptical because these programs could affect employees. 

“I definitely think it is a good incentive,” Brown said. “But it is basically buying workers, which could force them into bad working conditions that they are then obligated to stay in.”

There are also cons for Target and Walmart. 

Eugenie Ardoin, an associate professor of finance, said incentives like these programs might not be sustainable.

“Increasing compensation, either through direct pay or benefits, is always advantageous to attracting employees, but if it causes prices to rise and impacts profits, it may not be sustainable,” Ardoin said.