UCMC’s Tuition Reimbursement Proposals

The University of Chicago Medical Center is a market leader in offering competitive pay and benefits to attract and retain the best nurses and provide them a professional home for years to come. Our unparalleled benefits and career development programs make UCMC an employer of choice for nurses and the colleagues who support them.

UCMC is committed to educating the next generation of clinicians and furthering the knowledge of those who are currently part of our organization. Our tuition proposal brings NNU nurses’ education benefit in line with that at Ingalls and our non-union nurses.

Under our proposal, we’re offering to expand our market-leading tuition benefits, making this perk available sooner — to more nurses — while enhancing reimbursement for the most advanced degrees. Specifically, we want to eliminate the two-year waiting period for nursing tuition reimbursement by moving to network of approved nursing schools and increase the tuition coverage for DNP degrees.

  • Full-time nurses would receive 100% reimbursement for BSN, MSN, MSN/MBA (or other combined nursing degrees) and DNP.
  • Part-time nurses (20-34 hrs/week) would receive a 50% tuition benefit.
  • Tuition would be covered at a network of approved nursing schools, which were selected based on their geographic location in both Illinois and Indiana, robust online programs for those who prefer the flexibility of learning and studying from home and exceptional graduation and NCLEX pass rates.

This nursing education network is already in use across our health system for NNU nurses at Ingalls Memorial and non-NNU nurses at UCMC. We are working to establish direct billing with those schools, which saves employees from having to pay out of pocket and be reimbursed. So far, feedback has been positive from both a recruitment and a retention standpoint for nurses already participating in this program.

Current Schools/Programs 

Lewis University, Saint Xavier University, Rush University, Elmhurst University, DePaul University, Loyola University, University of Pittsburgh, Western Governors, Olivet University, Purdue University (all campuses), UIC (MSN and DNP programs only) and Chamberlain (all accredited programs)

In addition to our regular tuition program, we propose creating a new CRNA program that lets nurses attend school full-time with jobs waiting after graduation:

  • 100% tuition reimbursement for nurses who are obtaining a CRNA degree.
  • No requirement to remain in full-time or part-time role at UCMC while studying study for this degree. However, nurses would need to stay on our In-House Registry (IHR) during school and agree to two years of full-time CRNA employment at UCMC after graduation.
  • The CRNA program does NOT need to be part of the above network of nursing schools.

In 2021 and 2022, the Medical Center paid more than $2.5 million each year toward tuition for our nurses to grow professionally. In 2023, through September, that figure stood at $1.7 million. So far in 2023, more than 260 employees have participated in this program.