Disney Adds 2 Orange County Schools to Its Free-Tuition Program

The company will now cover tuition for its employees at Cal State University–Fullerton and Fullerton College
By Alice Sun
Alice Sun
Alice Sun
July 25, 2022 Updated: July 25, 2022

The Walt Disney Company July 20 added two more Orange County schools to its program that allows its employees to attend college for free.

The company recently partnered with Cal State University–Fullerton and Fullerton College through Disney Aspire, which covers 100 percent tuition for employees and cast members who have been working with Disney for over three months.

“We’re beyond proud to be a neighbor to Disneyland Resort, and even more excited to embark on this new adventure together,” Fram Virjee, president at California State University–Fullerton, said in a statement. “This is just the first step in working together to help build a better tomorrow for Orange County and our community.”

Disney’s other partnered educational providers include Purdue University Global, Southern New Hampshire University, University of Arizona, University of Central Florida, Valencia College, Brandman University, University of Florida Online, University of Denver, Wilmington University, and Bellevue University.

More than 13,000 employees are currently enrolled in a school through Disney Aspire and 2,600 have graduated since it was launched in 2018, according to the company.

Enrollees participate in various programs from high school completion to vocational and master’s degree certificates.

In addition to covering the cost of tuition, employees will also be reimbursed for additional fees and books required for the programs.

Employees are not required to stay at Disney after they complete their degree or certificate.

“Returning to school as a working adult is no easy feat, and we’ve heard from our employees time and time again how important it is that, when they make that decision, they want it to be at a place they already know and love,” Chris Trout, vice president of learning and development at The Walt Disney Company, said in a statement.

Currently, over 29,500 Walt Disney employees in California are eligible for this opportunity. One in four applicants applying for hourly jobs said Disney Aspire is one of the primary reasons to apply, according to the company (pdf).

Alice Sun