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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. -- Big Y World Class Market here has named Albany, N.Y.-based Excelsior College a preferred educational provider, thereby enabling over 9,400 employees throughout the New England grocery chain's 56 locations in Massachusetts and Connecticut to be better able to earn college degrees.
The partnership has been in effect since Sept. 1, Excelsior College spokesman William Stewart told Progressive Grocer. Although there are no students enrolled in the program yet, he added, the college was planning presentations of various course options for Big Y associates.
Private, nonprofit Excelsior College offers such choices as online courses and examinations, delivered in several formats, to serve time-starved students at their own convenience. The college additionally accepts transfer credits earned from a variety of accredited sources, among them traditional and online courses from other institutions, for-credit exams, and military and corporate training.
"Education plays a major role in remaining competitive in the high-stakes grocery business," said Excelsior College president John F. Ebersole in a statement.
Big Y will contribute up to $2,000 a year toward education for a full-time employee, and half that amount for part-time associates, regardless of geographic location, working hours, or amount of business travel.
Other companies that have chosen Excelsior College as a preferred education provider include Tyson Foods, McDonald's, and the American Payroll Association.
Family-owned and -operated Big Y has 57 locations in Massachusetts and Connecticut. "