Dollywood, Herschend Enterprises launch substantial education benefit available to all team members, starting day one of employment
PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Tuesday, February 8, 2022) —Officials with Dollywood Parks & Resorts today announced it will cover 100% of tuition, fees and books for any employee who chooses to pursue further education.
The significant investment in employee education will be made through Herschend’s GROW U., a new program, piloted by Herschend Enterprises, Dolly Parton’s operating partner in Dollywood. The program makes it exponentially easier for employees—or hosts as they are known at Dollywood—at all levels to pursue their personal and professional dreams through education. The program officially launches Feb. 24, for all seasonal, part-time, and full-time employees at Dollywood Parks & Resorts. Hosts can enroll in the program on their first day of employment.
“Our goal at Dollywood Parks and Resorts is to provide the best possible experience for both our guests and our hosts,” said Eugene Naughton, President of The Dollywood Company. “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.
“One of The Dollywood Foundation’s key tenets is to ‘learn more.’ This program is created with that very tenet in mind. We want our hosts to develop themselves through advanced learning to fulfill the foundation’s other tenets: care more, dream more, and be more. When our hosts strive to grow themselves, it makes our business and our community a truly better place. We care about our hosts’ development and we want their future to grow because of love—not loans.”
“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.”
Herschend’s GROW U. offers eligible seasonal, part-time and full-time hosts more than 100 fully-funded (100% free) diploma, degree and certificate programs across 30 learning partners, including programs in high-demand fields such as business administration and leadership, culinary, finance, technology and marketing. Additionally, the company will provide partial funding, up to $5,250/year, for 150 additional programs in fields including hospitality, engineering, human resources and art design.
Guild Education, the nation’s leading education and upskilling platform, powers the program. Guild was selected because of their strong reputation for connecting employers and high-value learning providers to create opportunities for America’s workforce. Dollywood Parks & Resorts hosts will have access to Guild’s proprietary Learning Marketplace to select from more than 30 learning providers and utilize resources like professional coaches to support their educational journey.
For anyone looking to take advantage of the opportunity, as well as the other unparalleled benefits Herschend and The Dollywood Company provides, positions are available at each of the company’s properties and are posted at Dollywoodjobs.com. Upcoming Hiring events are slated for Seymour Heights Christian Church (Saturday, Feb. 19) and Sevier County High School (Saturday, Feb. 26). Both hiring events take place from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Most event attendees are hired on the spot with a position for the 2022 season at either Dollywood, Dollywood’s Splash Country or Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa.
Positions are available for the entire length of the 2022 operating season, as well as shorter peak season openings, which are perfect for applicants looking for a fun summer position or for those looking to earn a little extra money during the Christmas holidays. Applicants must be 14 years of age or older.
Dollywood Parks & Resorts hosts receive a variety of unique benefits including access to the Dollywood Family Healthcare Center, along with complimentary Dollywood and Dollywood’s Splash Country admission for family and friends. Hosts are provided free meals for every working shift, and also take part in Dollywood’s Park Perks program which provides free or reduced admission to a large number of regional attractions, theaters and experiences. A comprehensive benefits package, including medical, dental and vision, is available for qualified full-time employees.
Dollywood also pays a portion of childcare costs for hosts whose children are cared for at a WeeCare-affiliated provider. Additionally, numerous development opportunities also are available to help employees develop leadership skills, including an apprenticeship program in conjunction with Walters State Community College.
For more information about working at Dollywood Parks & Resorts, please visit dollywoodjobs.com.
About The Dollywood Company: A highly-awarded and widely-recognized leader in the amusement industry, The Dollywood Company consists of the 160-acre Dollywood theme park; the 35-acre Dollywood’s Splash Country; Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa; and Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins. As unique as its namesake and owner Dolly Parton, Dollywood is the 2010 Applause Award winner, the theme park industry’s highest accolade; winner of more than 40 Golden Ticket Awards; and recipient of 27 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment (more than any other theme park in the world). The park is located near Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and has been named a top-three U.S. theme park by USA Today on multiple occasions and a top-10 world theme park by TripAdvisor. Dollywood is open mid-March through early January and offers rides and attractions, shows and crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region. Dollywood’s Splash Country, recognized by the Travel Channel and TripAdvisor as one of the country’s most beautiful water parks, operates from mid-May to Labor Day. Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa, a favorite of USA Today voters and TripAdvisor reviewers, provides guests with spectacular mountain views and family-friendly amenities next door to Dollywood theme park and Dollywood’s Splash Country. Dollywood’s Smoky Mountain Cabins offers luxurious cabin accommodations overlooking Dollywood. For more information, call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD or visit dollywood.com. Operating days and hours vary.
About Herschend Enterprises: Launched in 1960, Herschend Enterprises is a family of companies that focus on family entertainment. Its operating companies include Herschend Family Entertainment (Dollywood® Parks & Resorts, Silver Dollar City®, Adventure Aquarium®, Newport Aquarium®, and Wild Adventures®), Herschend Live (Harlem Globetrotters®), Herschend Entertainment Studios (Splash & Bubbles® and Chuggington®) and Herschend Adventure Holdings, LLC (Pink Adventure Tours®). Herschend properties entertain more than 14 million guests annually. For six decades, Herschend has operated with the purpose of bringing families closer together by Creating Memories Worth Repeating®. For more information, visit www.herschendenterprises.com.
About Guild Education: Guild Education is on a mission to unlock opportunities for America’s workforce through education and upskilling. A certified B-Corp, founded to bridge the gap between education and employment for working adults in the U.S. in need of upskilling for the future of work, Guild’s industry-leading technology platform allows the nation’s largest employers — including Bon Secours Mercy Health, Chipotle, Discover, Hilton, Macy’s, Target, Walmart and The Walt Disney Company — to offer strategic education and upskilling to their employees. Guild connects workers to a learning marketplace of the nation’s best learning partners for working adults with tuition paid by the company. Guild’s payments and technology platform, curated learning marketplace, and advanced education and career services come together to help working adult learners advance in their education and career, debt-free. For more information, visit https://www.guildeducation.com/.