When I started in the Metro College Program in Louisville, KY I had lots of questions. REAL honest answers were hard to come by. I try to answer theses questions on this page. Please remember that the experience is not the same for everyone. I try to take an objective point of and try not to make bias generalizations.

January 15, 2012

Last Update

I managed to work at UPS for 2.5 years while going to U of L. It caused me to be put on academic probation and suspension. So if your working 3rd shift and falling behind in your school work don't be surprised. It's really tough if not impossible. Look around while your at work. How many really good students are there? Probably, not that many.

April 15, 2010

Students Are Already Workers

Louis Proyect
Wed, 16 Jul 2008

April 10, 2010


The benefits package from UPS is better most if not all other part time jobs.

I think I had a choice between Humana and Blue Cross of Illinois for health insurance but either way they were both PPO (opposed to HMO) with out a deductible for any type of care.

There have been a few times that my back was a little sore and I made a trip to the chiropractor who was happy to take my insurance and charged me only a $10 dollar co-pay. 

The benefit package is comprehensive and includes vision insurance from VSP, Atena dental insurance and Medco prescription insurance.

There is no charge to the employee for these benefits. However, part time employees are required to pay union dues every month ($23).

March 14, 2010

The Part-Time Supervisor

As a part time package handler you will have a Full -Time supervisor and a Part Time Supervisor. The part time supervisor is likely a recently promoted Package Handler. 

All Package Handlers and  Part Time Supervisor s who work in the same area have the same Full Time Supervisor.

If something is not going well in your immediate area (about 6- 15 people) the Full Time Supervisor will put pressure on the Part Time Supervisor to improve whatever  needs improvement (for example how neatly the packages are stacked inside the container). 

To no fault of their own most  (not all) Part-Time supervisors are not good "people managers". The biggest reason is that they are inexperienced at managing people and they too had an inexperienced Part Time Supervisor to learn from. 

Often when a Full Time Supervisor puts pressure on a Part Time Supervisor the part time supervisor will begin to micro-manage the Package Handlers in their immediate area.  

It can be unpleasant. How to deal with this? Be prepared for it  don't take it personally, don't let it bother you, do your work and go home.

You may see a Part Time Supervisor being yelled at from time to time. Package Handlers are not yelled at because they are union employees. Part Time and Full Time Supervisors are not union employees.

March 11, 2010

History of Meto College

This link is about why Metro College was created.

March 9, 2010

Tuition Free

One of the biggest obstacles of getting through college is paying for it. Metro College is for many students the only chance at higher education. Here are dates that you have to work to get your tuition paid for.

Fall: September 15 - December 31
Spring: Febuary 1 - May 31
Summer: July 1 - September 30

UPS Worldport Video

This is a video from the UPS website about the Louisville operations.

March 6, 2010

As a Metro College student will I go to JCC or U of L

You can't get a bachelors degree from Jefferson Community College.

This might sound obvious but a lot of kids that I have worked with did not know that.

Metro College pays for students to go to U of L when they have less than 60 credits if their ACT scores are above a certain number (this number has changed over the years so check in to it).

If your ACT scores are less than that number then students have to go to JCC until they have 60 credit hours completed.

Jobs "Shift"

If you have the choice between HUB and RAMP. Choose the RAMP. The "shifters" move the containers that the "Loaders" fill out to the jets. The RAMP jobs are less demanding physically since most of the time is spent driving small vehicles called Tugs. Many tug drivers spend their nights waiting for containers to be filled by "loaders". Many tug drivers read books or study while they wait. Shifters or Tug drivers work a little longer than loaders.

Jobs "Loader"

Not all jobs at UPS where created equal. There are many different jobs that you could have as a Metro College student working at UPS. The largest number of jobs probably fall under the category of loader. Loaders generally work from 3 to 4 hours per night. For loaders the work can be intense and at times rather difficult. A loader has packages coming to them throughout the night. The volume of packages varies. Loaders don't control how hard they work. The volume of packages does. The packages come by some sort of conveyor the "loader" then loads the packages into a container that varies in size. When you interview for a position at UPS your given the choice of RAMP or HUB. Loader is a hub job.

March 2, 2010

Metro College from U of L website

I found it interesting that U of L encourages students to attend part time. I can't say that I disagree. It is really tough to attend full time and maintain your GPA above 3.0.

February 27, 2010


According to Jonathan Rivers Textbooks are one of the biggest rip offs in America.

College textbooks have the unique feature of being a ripoff on at least two different dimensions. First is the price charged to students. CNN cites a study by the Government Accountability Office showing that “textbook prices nearly tripled from 1986 to 2004 — a jump that’s twice the rate of annual inflation over the last two decades.” In fact, the average estimated cost of books and supplies in a given college year is $900, and many students report paying far more than that. However, it’s not just the actual price of the textbooks. In many college courses, the textbooks are never or seldom even used! Savvy college students have found that they can often glean the material needed from the Internet, or simply by looking on with a friend on rare days when the text is being used by the professor. It’s bad enough to be gouged at the checkout counter, but to rarely even use the textbooks takes the ripoff factor to new heights! 

UPS reimburses Metro College students up to $65 per class for text books, but remember that you have to get at least a "C"to qualify for reimbursement. Students can make this work and maybe even break even during their college career by following these steps. Remember the reimbursement is per class not per book. So if you buy two books your still reimbursed $65.
  1. Never buy a textbook before you need it. This can be tricky. How do you know if you will need the textbook in a particular class? Think about the subject and the assignments. For example,Math is not a subject that changes or is updated with new information. For example, MATH 101 - College Algebra, is a class that you will be able to find all the information you need online. If you have a class called Renewable Energy Sources,  then you should probably try to pick up the most current addition of the textbook online at Amazon.com.  
  2. Maximize the return of the text books value. You do not maximize the return you can get when you sell your books back to the book store for cash. Last semester I had a class which I bought 2 textbooks for. One was $60 and one was $40 both were used. As an experiment only, I went to the book store to see what they would offer me. Their offer, $13 dollars for both books.... When I got home with my books I listed them for $30 and $40 on Amazon and both of them sold quickly. So I spent $100. Got $65 from UPS and $70 from Amazon.com which means that I came out of the whole deal with $35 bucks.I sell all my books on Amazon. I use accurate descriptions and ship them the next day. UPS is too expensive so I go to the US Post Office.
  3. Shop around. Look for books on Amazon.com or ask a student taking a class your going to take next semester if you can purchase it from him or her at the end of this semester. You'll get a deal if he or she usually sells it back to the bookstore for cash. 
  4. Only buy used books in very good to like new condition. If the used price is only a few bucks less than the new price it probably worth it to go with the new one. Textbooks in poor condition don't sell quickly and require a large discount.
  5. Take care of your books. Don't highlight or use pen. I write in pencil in all my books and erase it when I am studying for final exams. Sometimes if the book is a paperback I'll use packaging to keep the corners from being damaged. Keeping your study area or desk clean an free of food and drinks is a good way to avoid a costly mistake. Dropping a meatball in the middle of a book will definitely leave a mark.
  6. Sell your books online. List your books as soon as possible. For example create the listing while your studying for your final exam on sites that get a lot of traffic like Amazon or Ebay. You don't have to be the lowest price but definitely look at what others are selling the book for, consider the condition of your book, be honest in the description and click the "submit listing" button. It is really that easy after you create a seller account on either site.

UPS Metropolitan College celebrates its 10th anniversary

It's where students can go to college for free, but have to work part-time for 20 hours a week.  UPS's Metropolitian College is marking its tenth anniversary.
More than 10,000 people have participated in the program.  More than 2200 have received their degrees.
Jason Koerner was one of the first graduates of the Metropolitan College:  "I feel successful, but only successful because of the assistance that was given to me."
Koerner is in his first semester as a psychology teacher at Jefferson Community and Technical College:  "Financially, I was in no position to be able to attend college like I wanted to.  And I still remember how excited I was to hear that they had this program available, and I came to UPS directly out of high school."
He now has his Master's degree and also supervises the school-to-work program for high school students at UPS.
Those who are enrolled in the Metropolitan College either attend JCTC or U of L.  They receive free tuition and work about 20 hours a week at the UPS hub overnight where wages start at $8.50 an hour.
Student and mentor Ashley Chapman explains, "I work five hours a night, and go to sleep when I get home, and a lot of students have a hard time falling asleep.  But I go straight to sleep and schedule afternoon classes so that I'll get enough time to sleep and study before I have to go to work again."
Ashley says the schedule can be demanding, and that time management is important to being a successful Metropolitan College student.
Some of the students serve as mentors to help others get thru the program.  One of them, Cheryl Davis, says, "Sometimes, especially new students starting, I see them real agressive and wanting to take a full load and feeling they can do it -- to make sure they understand that they need to do well in classes as well, making sure they can take on the amount they can handle and manage their job as well."
The program not only is an opportunity for students to be able to go to college, but it guarantees that UPS will have a stable workforce.
George Poling of UPS Metro College points out, "As you can imagine, it's really hard to staff an operation that only uses people for a few hours every night and in the middle of the night to boot.  And UPS knew that college students made really good workers, so we entered into this partnership back in 1998 and I think it's been a tremendous success."

-copied from FOX41.com
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February 25, 2010

Understanding Motives.

Why is UPS willing to pay for you to go to school. The first reason is how working 3rd shift affects your life. Assume that you will get to sleep around 6 am on the nights after you work. 6 - 8 hours of sleep means that you will wake up between 12 pm and 2 pm. As a student one of the most difficult things to do is create a class schedule. As you get closer to graduation this becomes more and more difficult because once you get into the 300 and 400 level classes (your junior and senior year) they are only offered once or twice per semester. In the business school at U of L every student takes Corporate Finance (FIN 301) so this class is available in about 5 sections every semester (offered at 5 different times during the week). So its relatively easy to find something that fits into your schedule. However, if you are a Finance major( you don't have to be a Finance major to have this problem its just an example)  the following semester you need to take Finance 350. Only Finance majors need to take FIN 350. Therefore, this class is offered only once per semester. Why is that a problem? For example, what if the only section offered is at 10:00 am? Your faced with two choices when you get home from work at 6 am. Sleep or don't sleep. If you sleep you will probably sleep through it a few times here and there but if you choose not to sleep it may be difficult to pay attention during the class. Possible outcomes. Take FIN 350 at 10:00 am and earn a "D", Metro College does not pay for classes you earn a "D" so you owe U of L about a $1000 dollars for the class, your GPA goes way down. You wait until the class offered next semester in the afternoon which is usually the case. Now you have extend you college career 6 months. If you figure that your going to make 40K when you get out it doesn't really make sense to stay at UPS where you make 10K per year + 8K per year in tuition any longer than you have to since you will make twice as much when you get out.

February 2, 2010

What is MetroCollege?

.... here is a description from http://www.gohigherky.org

Metropolitan College is a joint venture between the University of Louisville, Jefferson Community College, Jefferson Technical College and United Parcel Service (UPS). To participate in this program as a U of L student, you must be admissible to the university in one of the degree-granting units and meet the MC/U of L admission requirements. Any student interested in participating in the Metropolitan College program with less than 60 credit hours must submit their high school transcript and ACT/SAT scores. If you have questions regarding MC, please call MC/U of L office at (502) 852-2749 or visit the MC web site at www.metro-college.com. To indicate an interest in this program, please check the appropriate information on the admissions application–section 21.

January 26, 2010

What is it all about?

I'm starting this blog for one reason. To inform students in Louisville about the Metro College, UPS, Jefferson Community College and the University of Louisville. There is information that would have been useful for me to know about before I became a Metro College student and UPS employee. Hopefully this blog will cover that information. I'm am going to be objective and try not to make generalizations about UPS or U of L.