Walmart is the largest private employer in the country.

Big news from America's largest retailer!

Walmart will now pay the full cost of attending college for both its Walmart and Sam's Club employees.  

The initiative, through Walmart's Live Better U (LBU) program, previously required employees to pay a $1 a day fee to join. The company announced Tuesday that it will not only drop the fee for employees looking to further their education, but it would also begin covering the costs of their books.

"We feel that eliminating the dollar-a-day investment removes the financial barriers to enrollment, and it will increase access," Lorraine Stomski, senior vice president of learning and leadership at Walmart, told reporters on Tuesday, according to CNN.

That fee, the company says, will be eliminated on August 16 for its 1.5 million part-time and full-time workers. Around 28,000 workers currently participate in the program.

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The company has several reasons for enhancing their tuition benefit. It sweetens the deal in a difficult job market, plus, employees who have participated in the program are reportedly "twice as likely" to get promoted and are retained at a "significantly higher rate" than other workers, Stomski said, per CNN.

The program includes 10 academic partners throughout the country. Participants must remain part-time or full-time employees at Walmart to be eligible.

Walmart's participating partners include:

  • Johnson & Wales University
  • The University of Arizona
  • The University of Denver
  • Pathstream
  • Brandman University
  • Penn Foster
  • Purdue University Global
  • Southern New Hampshire University
  • Wilmington University
  • Voxy EnGen

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