Businesses leading the way to economic opportunity for America's workers

News + Resources


Employer Update: Five Questions for Bonny Simi, Founder of JetBlue Scholars

1) What is the JetBlue Scholars program? JetBlue Scholars is an innovative program that offers our crewmembers an opportunity to earn a fully accredited college degree with the company covering most of the cost. In our annual crewmember engagement surveys, we saw a reoccurring theme – crewmembers asking for help completing their degrees. JetBlue Scholars … Read More

Employer Update: Whole Foods Trains Associates for New 365 Store Openings with LearnUp

Forbes reports that in order to effectively hire a cadre of enthusiastic associates, 365 by Whole Foods engaged LearnUp to help screen applicants and offer them the opportunity to train for the job online prior to being hired. Going through the training period triples the chances a candidate will be hired since they are now … Read More

Employer Update: Walmart’s High School Diploma Program Helps Employee Keep a Promise to his Mother

Jason started working at a Walmart distribution center in Washington Courthouse, Ohio, nearly six years ago. He’d worked a variety of jobs before but, having never earned his high school diploma, he felt his chances for advancement were limited. Walmart’s high school diploma program with Cengage Learning’s Career Online High School gave Jason the help … Read More

Employer Update: How FCA US LLC and Its Dealers Built a No-Cost College Degree Benefit Program

By removing upfront costs and partnering with Strayer University to tailor degree programs to busy work adults, the automaker found early success and return on investment through employee retention. Recently, I joined business leaders at an event on employer talent investment hosted by UpSkill America, the Lumina Foundation and the Business Champions Supporting Credential Completion. … Read More


Communications Technology Company Realizes Returns for Investments in Tuition Assistance

Lumina Foundation released the second study in their series: Talent Investments Pay Off which shows a communications technology company which provided employees $138M in tuition assistance through its Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) realized a 39.2% ROI ($54.2M net savings), as a result of avoided talent management costs. Check out the briefing or the webinar for … Read More

Talent Investment Pays Off: Cigna Realizes Return on Investment from Tuition Benefits, Lumina Foundation Study Reveals

An analysis of health insurer Cigna’s Education Reimbursement Program (ERP) shows every dollar the company puts into the program is returned and generates an additional $1.29 in savings—a 129 percent return on investment. Lumina Foundation, a national foundation focused on increasing postsecondary attainment partnered with Cigna to design the study, which was conducted by Accenture, … Read More

Join the Movement

Join the upskilling movement by becoming an UpSkill America Partner.

UpSkill America is an employer-led movement to expand opportunity for America’s workers and help our economy and communities thrive by promoting training and advancement practices to help workers progress in their careers and move into better-paying jobs.


UpSkill America Statement of Principles

UpSkill America and its partners believe:

  • Investing in the skills of workers is good for businesses, employees, communities and the nation.
  • Education, training and development is critical in order for workers to advance in their careers and earn better wages.
  • Upskilling is most effective when employers, workers and education/training providers are all fully committed in partnership to the success of the endeavor.
If you agree with our Statement of Principles (above), join the movement now!

Who We Are

UpSkill America is an employer-led movement to expand economic opportunity for America’s workers.

As the economy continues to improve, many employers are struggling to find skilled workers to fill the jobs they are creating. At the same time, tens of millions of frontline America’s workers in low-wage jobs could be trained to fill more skilled roles but lack a clear career path.

These workers are only half as likely as their higher-skilled colleagues to receive career-relevant training.

We recognize the critical need to help frontline employees—from food service workers to daycare providers, from health care workers to construction laborers—obtain new skills.

We need more American business leaders to invest in effectively upskilling their workers. Leading the way to the middle class for more hardworking Americans is good for business and good for America.

A Three Part Mission


leading employers that provide expanded career opportunities for their workers


the widespread adoption of business policies and practices that increase economic opportunity


public-private education and workforce development efforts that support and advance these initiatives

Leadership Council

A coalition of business, education, workforce training, and human resource organizations will lead the effort

Skill for America's Future
National Fund for Workforce Solutions
Business Leaders United for Workforce Partnerships
Committee for Economic Development
Bay Area Council
Business Champions
HR Policy Foundation
Small Business Majority

“Today we are partnering with business across the country to UpSkill America. To help workers of all ages earn a shot at better, higher paying jobs even if they don't have a higher education. We want to recruit more companies to help provide apprenticeships and other pathways so people can upgrade their skills. We are all going to have to do that in this new economy.”— Barack Obama

Barack Obama via Flickr