Honors Theses

Date of Award

Summer 6-1-2022

Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis


Croft Institute for International Studies

First Advisor

K.B. Melear

Second Advisor

April Thompson

Third Advisor

Oliver Dinius

Relational Format



This study gathered stakeholder viewpoints regarding the role of educational assistance programs among the Fortune 1000 companies during the war for talent. Thirteen semi-structured interviews revealed themes that addressed four guiding research questions. After analyzing the results of the interviews and reading relevant literature, I created recommendations for each of the questions. From the first guiding research question (How do educational assistance programs help attract and retain employees and differentiate companies from one another?), recommendations include: offer a broad range of programs from G.E.D. to master’s degrees, utilize tuition assistance models to improve access to educational assistance programs, and allow day one eligibility for employees. From the second guiding research question (Why do companies and universities participate in educational assistance programs?), recommendations include: boost ROI analyses of educational assistance programs and increase university consideration of partnerships with educational assistance intermediaries. From the third guiding research question (What policies or initiatives should be considered by the government, both federal and state, regarding educational assistance programs?), recommendations include: restart the Survey of Employer-Provided Training (SEPT), raise the $5,250 tax deduction under Section 127, change the $5,250 deduction to a graduated system based on income, and expand eligible expenses for educational assistance programs. For the fourth and primary guiding research question (What factors will or will not drive companies to expand their educational assistance programs to their international employees?) case analyses of the higher education markets in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and the UK were conducted to determine which countries were most favorable for expansion. The United States ranked first, followed by a tie between Canada and the UK and lastly Mexico.

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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.



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