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Following a ribbon-cutting ceremony today, Walgreens University, in Deerfield, Ill., will officially open its doors, the company announced in a statement.
With technology-enhanced classrooms, a mock drugstore, and video-conferencing capabilities, the school will give Walgreens' 240,000 employees the opportunity to further their education and their careers in the industry.
The school doubles the company’s annual investment in employee education and development, and it will serve as the base of operations for classroom, online, and regional educational programming.
“Walgreens University is not solely a building, but a national program with national access and offerings for team members at every level of the company,” said Kathleen Wilson-Thompson, the company's chief human resources officer. “For Walgreens to compete effectively and expand our business, our team members need to continuously grow new skills and capabilities throughout their careers with us.”
More than 100 courses will be available through a corporate training program that offers college credit for certain classes, such as pharmacy tech training and management and retail fundamentals.
Education providers include Lake Forest Graduate School of Management, which will offer a customized MBA program; University of Maryland University College (UMUC); Webster University; the University of Phoenix; and DeVry University, Keller Graduate School of Management.
Many employees will be able to receive tuition discounts, ranging from 10% to 25%, and UMUC’s 25% discount will also be offered to employees’ spouses and dependents.
“The launch of Walgreens University is a significant step toward consistent, higher-quality training for our entire team at every corner of America,” said Bruce Bryant, Walgreens senior vice president and dean of the university, who also has 40 years of experience with the company.
The curriculum and system of instruction were built by a Walgreens learning and development team led by Warren Lindley, divisional vice president, organizational design and effectiveness, and through extensive consultation with Walgreens leadership and external experts.