Good grief. Just a few weeks ago, we were counting down some of Dolly Parton’s greatest charitable acts and now that list is out of date because Dolly doesn’t sleep. On Tuesday, Dollywood Parks & Resorts announced that it would cover tuition for all employees who want to pursue their education. And not just tuition either — fees, books, everything, for all employees, whether full-time, part-time and seasonal, all of whom can enroll day one of their employment.
“Our goal at Dollywood Parks and Resorts is to provide the best possible experience for both our guests and our hosts,” Eugene Naughton, President of The Dollywood Company, said in a statement. “We know when our hosts are happy and feel cared for that they are going to pass that along to our guests. The creation of the program allows another avenue for us to care for our hosts.”
The investment partly comes from Herschend’s GROW U., a new program working with Dollywood to make it as easy as possible for employees to pursue their own academic, professional and personal goals. “Herschend’s GROW U. is not only a significant and transformational investment in our employee’s growth but also our love culture in action,” said Andrew Wexler, CEO of Herschend Enterprises. “Herschend is rooted in love – it’s evident at every Herschend property, every day –in the way we treat and support each other, how we Create Memories Worth Repeating for guests, and most importantly, how we care for our employees.”
Even without the remarkable investment in education, Dollywood is a pretty good place to work. Employees have full access to the healthcare center and complimentary year-round access to the theme park for friends and family. Employees get free meals with every shift, reduced fees for tons of local attraction, theaters and activities, a comprehensive benefits package and comped childcare costs. Oh, and guess what? They’re hiring.