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School to Work

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the UPS School to Work Program?

The UPS School to Work Program is a co-op program that provides high school seniors the opportunity to attend high school in the morning, work at UPS three to four hours per day as a package handler, and take extended academic courses during their senior year. The program allows a student to earn high school credit, earn college credit, and earn a paycheck while gaining valuable job experience, as they complete the requirements needed for their high school diploma. A STW student has the opportunity to stay at UPS after graduation to take advantage of UPS’s post-secondary education programs.

What does a student need to be qualified for the School to Work Program?

Have a 2.0 cumulative GPA (freshman, sophomore, and junior year)
Have a good high school attendance (90%)
Get a recommendation from student’s high school counselor
Be 16 years of age

What benefits does a student receive as a UPS employee?

UPS employees receive a weekly paycheck, health, dental, vision, prescription, life and disability insurance after 9 months of employment. Employees also earn paid holidays and vacation time.

Does a student get additional benefits from being in the STW Program?

Yes, students earn the same benefits that any employee earns, but STW students receive additional benefits that include: high school elective credit, up to six college credit hours (one class each semester), UPS-paid tuition, UPS-provided textbooks, support from a STW mentor, and automatic placement into UPS’s post-secondary education programs, Metropolitan College and Earn & Learn, plus job experience working for a Fortune 50 company.

What is a mentor?

The role of a School to Work mentor is to assist high school seniors in successfully completing all three parts of the STW program: high school, work, and extended academic courses that may include college classes. The STW mentor works directly with the students by visiting them in the workplace and before the college classes. Mentors assist students with questions, issues, etc. Mentors also provide information and direction to help students continue their path to post-secondary education.

Can a student play sports and participate in the STW Program?

Most major sports do not work with the STW program due to the release times from work and the college class, along with the time commitment a student athlete would need to make to their team. If a student is interested in the STW program, it is recommended they talk with their coach to see if they will work around the STW schedule. Students that are in the program must be able to work their scheduled hours and attend their college class on scheduled days.

Can a student participate in extracurricular activities and participate in the STW Program?

Yes, as long as the activity or club does not interfere with the student’s work release time and/or their college classes. See the sports response above.

How does a student apply?

High School Juniors must attend a presentation on the STW program, be eligible, and get a recommendation to participate. A student must wait until a recommendation is received from the high school counselor before applying. Eligible students will receive a letter with instructions on the online application and the interview process once they are recommended.

Can a student work at UPS while in high school without participating in the STW Program?

No, the only way to work at UPS during high school is through the STW program. Students that do not participate in the STW program can apply to UPS before the end of their senior year. A high school student will not be hired until after they graduate from high school. If there is a need for seasonal help at UPS, students who are at least 17 years of age could be considered. UPS package volume and school schedules determine this each year.

Can a STW student work only during summer break?

No, the student will start their co-op in the summer, but the job is a commitment until graduation.

Can a student get more hours than the usual 15-20 per week?

Normally, a STW student works 15-20 hours per week but there are times that the sort span may last longer, especially from November through December (our busiest time of the year). A student may be scheduled to work additional days during peak season. There are opportunities to double shift during the year.

Can a STW student report to work if they do not attend school?

No, they cannot report to work if the absence is due to an illness. Yes, if the student has a doctor or dentist appointment, they must supply a note and report directly to work.

What if there is a day that a student is required to stay at school?

If the high school requires a student to stay at school due to a mandatory event, students will be scheduled off from work that day. These days are normally worked out in advance. If the event is not mandatory a student must ask off just like any other job. There is no guarantee of time off on non-mandatory days.

Is Spring Break a holiday from work?

No, Spring Break is a normal work week. If a student wants that week off, they need to request the time off from their supervisor. There is no guarantee of time off on these days.

How is a student’s high school co-op grade determined?

The co-op grade is determined by the student’s performance and attendance both at work and in their college class/extended academic course.

What college classes are offered with the STW program?

We offer basic education requirements that are needed for most degrees that are pursued in college. For example: English 101, English 102, College Algebra, Basic Public Speaking, Psychology, Humanities, Introduction to Business, Osha Safety, Blueprint Reading, etc. The classes are taught on site at UPS in our UPS Education and Technical Center (UPSTEC) by Jefferson Community and Technical College. A College Ready course is offered to students that do not meet the minimum requirements for JCTC. This course may assist students to meet high school benchmarks.

How many days a week does a student attend the JCTC college class?

We offer many options for our students to be successful. The hybrid classes meet once a week, which includes extensive online coursework outside the classroom. Students are in class from 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm one or two days per week. Students will take one class in the fall and one in the spring.

What if a student does not pass the college class?

If a student does not successfully complete their college class, they will be responsible to reimburse UPS for the cost of the class. The failure will also show on the student’s college transcript.

What if I leave the program early?

The commitment to the STW program is until high school graduation. If a student leaves before graduation, they would receive a W (Withdrawal) in the college class and be responsible for reimbursing UPS for the cost of the class. The student may receive a failing grade for their high school co-op, in addition to the concerns with returning to a full day of high school classes. The high school consequences depend on the policies of each individual high school.

What are the student’s options after high school graduation?

A student in the STW program has several options once they graduate high school:

Leave UPS after high school graduation.
Continue with employment at UPS.
Continue with employment at UPS and utilize Metro College or Earn & Learn.