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Sellen Construction Lightens Employees’ Student Loan Burden


Sellen Construction, located in Seattle, Wash., is proud to be the next cutting-edge employer to offer a rich student loan repayment program to their employees. Student loan debt is a pressing burden for millions of employees nationwide. Sellen’s leadership recognized this issue and decided to help their employees.

To better the lives of their employees and stand out from competing general contractors in the Seattle area, Sellen now offers student loan repayment to a large number of people in its workforce. The company has committed to contributing up to $1,000 annually toward a student loan, with a $10,000 lifetime cap.

In addition to helping employees pay off student loans, Sellen is offering a 529 college savings plan contribution. For employees who do not currently have a student loan, or who would prefer to have contributions go toward a 529 plan instead, Sellen will give the same $1,000 annual contribution. Sellen’s employees can enroll in the program in June; initial contributions will begin in July of 2019.

Sellen knows that a student loan repayment program through BenefitEd will differentiate their benefits package and help them stand out from peers in their industry.

Kate Harkess, Sellen’s Director of Human Resources, stressed that Sellen didn’t just want to add dollars to traditional benefits, or lower their competitive insurance premiums; Sellen’s leadership felt it needed to offer a new benefit specific to the needs of their employees. A recent American Student Assistance Survey reports that 86% of young workers say they would commit to an employer for five years if the company helped pay back their student loans1.

“We chose BenefitEd because of the ease of communication between the employee and BenefitEd, the ease of administration, and the fact that BenefitEd is a vendor that is secure and dominant in the student loan repayment space,” Harkess said.

Additionally, one of Sellen’s core values is its people. The company strives to help its employees learn and grow in many different facets of their lives. For Sellen, a student loan repayment and college savings program through BenefitEd not only differentiates its benefits package, but also aligns with its values of people by investing in their education and financial future.

“Financial stability makes us all better employees, parents and people,” Harkess said. “We value our employees and recognize that these loans – which they took on to work for us – are a personal cost to them. We want to show our employees that we’re investing in them as well.”

About Sellen Construction

Sellen Construction is a locally owned and operated commercial builder. Founded in 1944 and headquartered in the South Lake Union neighborhood of Seattle, Sellen builds iconic projects for the region’s tech, science, arts, healthcare and hospitality leaders. We believe in building community by creating unique spaces where significant things happen, and in giving back to non-profit organizations that make our community a great place in which to live and work. Sellen’s notable projects include the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Campus, Seattle Children’s Hospital Building Hope Expansion, the Museum of History and Industry at South Lake Union, King Street Station Restoration, and the new Amazon office towers in Seattle’s Denny Triangle neighborhood. For more information, go online at

About BenefitEd BenefitEd offers student loan repayment and college savings programs that help progressive employers create a more engaged and productive workforce. As a joint venture between Ameritas and Nelnet, BenefitEd leverages a deep understanding of employee benefits programs and expertise in education payment processing. For more information, go to