FedEx Express and University of Memphis Launch Program to Offer Indianapolis Hub Employees an Opportunity to Earn Tuition-Free Degree

More than 3,500 Indianapolis-area FedEx Express employees are now eligible to take part in UofM Global program, LiFE

September 26, 2018 - Just over a month since the Memphis launch of the new program, LiFE: Learning inspired by FedEx, the University of Memphis and FedEx Express announce the expansion of the tuition-free degree opportunity to employees of the Indianapolis Hub.

"FedEx and the University of Memphis have seen a tremendous response in a short period of time in the LiFE program locally," said M. David Rudd, President of the University of Memphis. "We are very excited to see this phenomenal initiative grow and allow thousands of FedEx employees in the Indianapolis Hub the opportunity to pursue a degree through UofM Global."

LiFE: Learning inspired by FedEx is a unique new initiative that will provide FedEx Hub employees in Memphis and Indianapolis the opportunity to earn a bachelor's degree through the University of Memphis online program, UofM Global, at potentially no cost to the employees. As long as students remain in good academic standing and are employed at the FedEx Memphis or Indianapolis Hub, tuition expenses will be directly billed to FedEx.

"Our team members have the potential to do great things at FedEx, with opportunities to move throughout the organization learning new skills, build upon existing ones and grow in their careers," said Barb Wallander, Senior Vice President of Human Resources, FedEx Express. "We're thrilled to be expanding the LiFE program at the Indianapolis Hub, which is another example of the competitive benefits FedEx offers to support the well-being of our team members."

Since the launch of the program in Memphis last month, almost 2,000 employees have submitted interest forms, and more than 1,000 are already enrolled in one of the three journey pathways. Pathways start with either High School Equivalency, LiFE Prep Academy or degree-required courses.

The LiFE program, specifically the LiFE Prep Academy, was specially designed by UofM Global to meet three obstacles posed by FedEx in regard to challenges their employees face in pursuing a higher education: financial constraints, anxiety of returning to school and, in some instances, lack of a high school diploma.

UofM Global partnered with local organizations in Memphis and Indianapolis to provide assistance for those needing to earn their high school equivalency. The LiFE Prep Academy is an innovative program designed by UofM Global to help students ease into the college curriculum. Successful completion of the no-risk, self-paced online coursework will result in automatic enrollment to UofM Global and 12 college credit hours. This program, along with 24/7 tutoring; Smart Start, a readiness assessment tool; academic coaching; and a LiFE Coach who serves as each student's primary contact at the UofM from enrollment to graduation, provides the tools needed to help ease anxiety and to support adult learners.

"We are delighted to collaborate with FedEx to use higher education attainment as a solution to an employee retention challenge," said Dr. Richard Irwin, UofM Vice Provost for Academic Innovation and Support Services and Dean of UofM Global. "In six short weeks almost 2,000 FedEx employees have expressed interest in LiFE. We've heard compelling stories from many who now have a path to a four-year college degree who previously thought that was out of their reach. We are very fortunate to share this same life-changing opportunity with the Indianapolis Hub employees."

Indianapolis and Memphis FedEx World Hub employees can start their LiFE journey at http://uofmglobal.memphis.edu/LiFE.

About the University of Memphis

Founded in 1912, the University of Memphis is nationally-recognized for its academic, research and athletic programs. The UofM educates more than 21,000 students and awards more than 4,000 degrees annually. The UofM is proud to offer the Helen Hardin Honors College is the largest honors college in the state. Additionally, the FedEx Institute of Technology, based at the UofM, is a flagship global research initiative that partnered with the University to secure a record 10 technology patents in 2017. The prestigious Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law, which was listed as having the "Best Law School Facilities" in the nation, had a seven percent federal judicial clerkship rate for the Class of 2017, placing it among the top law schools in the United States. The UofM is also pleased to offer Tennessee's only doctoral degree program in music through the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music, which will be opening a new 40,000-square-foot music center.

The Loewenberg College of Nursing, in its 51st year, was nationally-recognized for diversity. As the largest Graduate School in the Mid-South, the UofM had four graduate programs ranked among the best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report while the publication ranked two UofM online programs nationally. The UofM Lambuth with its 57-acre, tree-filled, tranquil campus in Jackson, Tenn., was acquired in 2011. The University of Memphis has a close academic relationship with a number of Fortune 500 companies, including FedEx, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, AutoZone and International Paper, located in the City of Memphis.