FedEx is offering employees at its Memphis hub tuition-free online degrees through the University of Memphis, according to one local television station.
WBRC reports that the Learning inspired by FedEx (LiFE) program will provide the company's 11,000 Memphis World Hub employees with access to the public university's more than 60 undergraduate and graduate online degree programs, along with academic coaching and round-the-clock tutoring.
Employees are eligible to start online classes as soon as their first day of employment, and they must remain in good academic standing. Those who don't have a high school diploma can work on high school and college degrees simultaneously.
Businesses that are struggling to find qualified white-collar workers may offer colleges and universities opportunities to launch new programs and enroll hundreds, even thousands, of students. Corporations — especially those in the tech field — are increasingly offering employee training and will provide institutions with financial support and even curriculum for vetted, in-demand courses.
Amazon's Web Services subsidiary is working with a group of community colleges in Southern California to offer a 15-credit certification in cloud computing, with the goal of expanding the offering to a two-year degree.
Continuing its higher ed research collaborations, Amazon today announced that it is expanding its Alexa Fund Fellowship for voice technology research from to 18 universities from four previously. Participating schools span four countries and include MIT, the University of Michigan, and Emerson College, in Boston.
Google, meanwhile, is providing a tech support course through 25 community colleges in seven states. As of late June, nearly 40,000 students had enrolled.
Last December, Wired reported on a number of corporations that are designing courses and then helping colleges offer them. Among them is Eastern Washington University, which added a data analytics training program from Microsoft when it learned the tech giant was planning to increase its hiring in the specialty.