If you’ve been following any news about higher education lately, you’ve probably heard about Starbucks’s new initiative to pay for the college educations of its students. You can find plenty of good summaries and informational articles out there, including this one from Inside Higher Ed, this one from the Washington Post, and this one from the Seattle Times. Here’s a simple version:
1. A partnership between Starbucks and Arizona State University Online is going to pay for employees’ tuition entirely for their junior and senior years of online education.
2. The same partnership will provide financial assistance in the form of a scholarship for the first two years of college.
3. This is not a loan, and is based entirely upon employees’ continued work at Starbucks (there is a certain minimum number of hours students must work to qualify for all this) and attendance to the Arizona State University Online program specifically.
Sounds great, right? Well, it’s maybe a bit more complicated than it at first might seem.