CCC, JBS USA and Pilgrim's Partner For Free Tuition
March 19, 2021
Central Community College is one of six community/technical colleges that have partnered with JBS USA and Pilgrim's in the Better Futures program.
The free-of-charge, two-year college tuition program will provide more than 66,000 company team members and their dependent children the opportunity to pursue their higher education dreams.
Better Futures removes a major financial barrier to college attendance and stands to become the largest free college tuition program in rural America. JBS USA and Pilgrim’s advisors will also help team members – many from first-generation American families – navigate the application process, which can be a deterrence to people applying to college for the first time.
“Our Better Futures program removes the biggest financial barrier associated with going to college, and it gives our team members and their families the opportunity to reap the benefits an education can provide,” said Andre Nogueira, chief executive officer, JBS USA. “We will be delighted if some choose to build or continue their careers with us when they graduate. Yet our larger aim is to unlock rural America’s potential through free college education for our team members and their children.”
To be eligible, JBS USA and Pilgrim’s team members need only to have worked with the company for the last six months and remain in good standing with the company through completion of their education. College tuition is paid upfront by the company, team members will not need to take out loans to cover tuition and people can pursue whatever program they choose. Better Futures is open to all qualified team members and eligible dependents of team members.
“We believe in the power of education to improve lives, and the Better Futures program is an extension of our promise to offer opportunities for a better future to our team members,” said Fabio Sandri, chief executive officer, Pilgrim’s. “Better Futures will open doors for our team members and their families to learn and grow as they work to achieve their dreams.”
The company is establishing long-term partnerships with community colleges in parts of the country where it operates at a time when community college enrollment rates are shrinking across rural America. As a large employer in many rural communities, JBS USA and Pilgrim’s believe providing free access to community college and technical training programs can help play a role to sustainably build rural economies and make a lasting and meaningful difference in people’s lives.
"We are so pleased to be able to provide quality educational opportunities to the outstanding employees of JBS and members of their families,” said CCC President Dr. Matt Gotschall. “This is definitely a win-win-win partnership between individuals, private industry and public higher education, which will make a positive difference for generations to come.”
If there is a facility where a college is not conveniently located, the companies will provide an online community college option.
Many of the program participants will be first-generation college students, and the companies are actively promoting the program with their workforce in multiple languages to encourage participation. The first class of students will be eligible for the upcoming 2021/2022 school year.
The other college partnerships include:
- Riverside, Calif. – Riverside City College, Norco College, and Moreno Valley College of the Riverside Community Council District
- Greeley, Colo. – Aims Community College
- Omaha, Neb. – Metropolitan Community College
- Hyrum, Utah – Bridgerland Technical College
- Online Partner – Rio Salado College