If you are currently employed and want to further your education beyond your Bachelor’s degree, or perhaps increase your earning potential, you may consider whether your employer will pay for your Master’s degree. Because tuition prices can be high, and taking out student loans can be costly and burdensome, paying for your own Master’s degree may difficult. Fortunately, employers will often agree to cover your education costs either fully or partially. See a New York Times report about the increase in employer-sponsored M.B.A. programs.

Many Companies Offer Tuition Reimbursement Plans

In some cases, businesses offer a benefits package which includes a tuition reimbursement plan that provides financial assistance to workers who wish to return to the classroom. It behooves you to inquire about these benefits; even if your company does not articulate a specific program, it may be willing to work with you in creating this option. According to Forbes magazine, there will often be stipulations attached to this monetary aid. First, the Master’s degree program must typically be related to your current Bachelor’s degree. Secondly, you may have to maintain a minimum GPA in order to become eligible for reimbursement. That GPA is usually a 3.0, but some workplaces expect a 3.6 or higher for the maximum reimbursement amount. Next, you generally need to work full-time in order to qualify. Finally, you may have to agree to remain with the company for a set number of years after completing the education, ensuring loyalty to the business that financed your degree.

Employers Understand the Value of Well-Educated Workers

One of the top reasons for offering tuition reimbursement benefits is to make you a more competent worker so that you become a more valuable asset to the company. An employer who finances your education is making a business decision to invest in your potential so that you may, in turn, improve your performance for the company, whether that means bringing in more profit, better knowledge, or an additional skill set. Employers generally only pay for your Master’s degree if they will reap the benefits of your education, so when you embark upon a Master’s degree program financed by your company, you should be sure that you are committed to staying at your job.

Convince Your Employer to Cover Master’s Degree Costs

If your company won’t pay for your master’s degree, you can try to persuade a superior to make it happen by explaining the various ways that you could benefit the company after receiving the education. Telling your boss that you’ll be more efficient at work, that you’ll be able to handle a larger workload, that you’ll be a more competent leader, or that the company would enhance its reputation by providing additional training to its workers are all great ways to convince him or her to set things in motion.

As you decide whether to pursue a Master’s degree, it is worthwhile to look into the possibility of an employer-financed education. Whether you decided to accept your company’s outlined offer, or whether you negotiate with your boss about the possibility of establishing a tuition reimbursement program, a fully or partially compensated education is a singular opportunity. In most cases, furthering your education will improve your career options, and if your employer will pay for your Master’s degree, you will be able to take advantage of that benefit without personal financial struggle or debt.