Starbucks partner finds success through College Achievement Plan

Growing up, 27-year-old Starbucks partner Andrew Pearce didn’t expect to pursue a college education after finishing high school. It was something, he said, that just didn’t seem feasible at the time.

“We always had this idea growing up that college would be really great … but so was winning the lottery,” Pearce said.

But because of the Starbucks College Achievement Plan, Pearce is now a junior studying technological entrepreneurship and management through Arizona State University.

The College Achievement Plan is a partnership between Arizona State University and Starbucks that gives eligible partners the opportunity to earn a bachelor’s degree from ASU’s top-ranked online degree programs. It’s this program that has allowed Pearce to take classes online and work towards a degree he’s interested in.

When he’s not studying or pursuing his hobbies, he’s often working at the Starbucks Reserve Roastery in Seattle. He says that some of the skills he uses in his job, like analyzing the needs of customers and switching between tasks quickly, have similar application in his studies.

“Part of our mission statement, which is to inspire and nurture the human spirit … I’ve found a real place for that in school,” he said.

Pearce says that the College Achievement Plan has taught him “how to make your own luck,” something he thinks is especially relevant to his studies in tech entrepreneurship.

“Once I looked deeper into the ASU program and our partnership with them, it made great sense,” he said. “My experience so far has been incredible, and I actually believe that we’re changing the way we educate people in this country through it.”

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5 things to know about first-ever Starbucks Promises Day