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Perris to help city employees obtain bachelor’s degrees through online classes

By in Press Enterprise on February 3, 2018

By Shane Newell

The city of Perris is making it easier for its employees to obtain bachelor’s degrees online.

Following a unanimous Jan. 30 council vote, the city is moving forward with the Perris Scholars Program.

The program gives city employees the opportunity to take online courses at, transfer the credits to the nonprofit and accredited Thomas Edison State University and work toward completing a bachelor’s degree online, according to a staff report.

In addition to making the courses available for employees, the city has agreed to pay the $3,500 cost of the courses.

“We have a lot of staff who want to further their education,” City Councilwoman Tonya Burke said. “Us being a city that prides itself on encouraging staff to move up, move on and do great things — we felt like this was a perfect program for them.”

Nearly 30 employees have expressed interest in joining the program.

“I believe that this will help them in their career endeavors and earning potential,” Burke said.

Once employees complete the classes, which take about two years to complete, they are expected to pay a transfer cost of $4,000 to Thomas Edison State University — a cost that can be paid in yearly $2,000 increments, according to a staff report. Employees may be eligible to recoup some of the transfer costs through federal financial aid or the city’s existing educational reimbursement program.

The bachelor’s degree obtained from Thomas Edison State University’s online program will be in business administration or liberal studies, city spokesman Joe Vargo said. The information technology major will be available in the near future, he said.

City officials say Perris is the first city in Southern California to partner with the Mountain View-based, which has worked with a few cities in Northern California.

“It’s a great program and I think it’s going to be […]    

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