As back to school shopping season gets into full swing (gulp, already!?), the cost of college is top of mind for many – and with good reason. According to the College Board, the average cost of tuition and fees for the 2017–2018 school year was $34,740 at private colleges, $9,970 for state residents at public colleges, and $25,620 for out-of-state residents attending public universities.

That’s why Walmart’s announcement that it will pay for associate’s or bachelor’s college degrees for its 1.5 million full- and part-time employees is kind of a big deal. The nation’s largest retail employer announced in late May that employees will be able to pursue degrees in business or supply-chain management at three non-profit schools for just one dollar a day. The program, which is available to all Walmart U.S. and Sam’s Club employees, will subsidize the cost of higher education. Degrees are being offered through the University of Florida, Brandman University in Irvine, California, and Bellevue University in Nebraska – nonprofit schools selected for their focus and strong outcomes on serving working adult learners.

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Rainn Wilson drinks a Shamrock Shake during an interview on March 17, 2011 (Stacie McChesney/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

The Shamrock Shake was first introduced by McDonald's in 1970. Since then, more than 60 million minty green shakes have been guzzled down, according to the Huffington Post. While you may enjoy a Shamrock Shake from Mickey D's in the spirit of St. Patrick's Day, you can definitely do without some of those ingredients. Did you know that there are 54 ingredients in total that make up the Shamrock Shake? That's pretty crazy. There are weird food colorings, carrageenan (which is a possible carcinogen), high fructose corn syrup, and—drum roll please—absolutely no mint. There is of course "natural flavor" listed, so who knows, maybe that's what gives it the minty goodness.

You can easily make your own Shamrock Shake at home and avoid suspicious ingredients and the 820 caloric bomb. Say goodbye to McDonald's and hello to the far superior homemade Shamrock Shake.

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SAN FRANCISCO - FEBRUARY 09: A sign stands outside of a McDonald's restaurant February 9, 2009 in San Francisco, California. Fast food chain restaurant McDonald's reported a 7.1 percent increase in same store sales for January as people look towards cheaper food alternatives in the weakening economy. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

A Lynwood, California McDonald's restaurant has flipped its iconic golden arches upside-down to show support for International Women's Day, which occurs tomorrow. The franchisee who owns the restaurant, Patricia Williams, started the trend and McDonald's corporate thinks it's a great idea.

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2017 has been a year of tremendous social unrest. From sexual misconduct scandals to the nearly daily PR scandals surrounding the Trump administration, people are more responsive and sensitive to injustices than ever before. Advertising was no exception.

In addition to the numerous PR disasters within the world of politics, several major corporations found themselves in hot water following their own instances of branded disaster. 2017 reached a fever pitch in terms of cultural appropriation and societal insensitivity.

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Vet administering an antibiotic tube to prevent mastitis in dairy cattle. (Wayne Hutchinson/Farm Images/UIG via Getty Images)

Our best medicines are losing their power. Since the 1940s, antibiotics have stopped infections from turning deadly, saving millions of lives around the world. Prior to the discovery of antibiotics, surgery was more dangerous, now-curable diseases like STDs and tuberculosis killed millions, and a paper cut could be fatal. However, overuse and misuse of these drugs have led to the rise of antibiotic-resistant strains of “superbugs.” Older types of antibiotics have been rendered useless by these powerful bacteria, compelling researchers to develop new generations of stronger varieties. Now those newer drugs are losing their effectiveness as well, and the World Health Organization has raised the alarm: We are running out of cures.

“Antimicrobial resistance is a global health emergency that will seriously jeopardize progress in modern medicine,” said Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of WHO. “There is an urgent need for more investment in research and development for antibiotic-resistant infections including TB, otherwise we will be forced back to a time when people feared common infections and risked their lives from minor surgery.”

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Increasingly, large corporations like Walmart and McDonald’s are buckling under pressure to better support their employees. The long overdue yet somewhat lackluster result: these companies have started to offer their low-wage workers slightly higher wages and a few basic benefits. Walmart, for example, announced in February that it would raise wages for its lowest paid employees to at least $9 an hour, and McDonald’s announced in April that, in addition to increased wages, employees may now accrue up to five days in paid time off per year. These concessions are certainly improvements for low-wage workers, but the recent financial crisis has created somewhat of a “rearview mirror effect.” In other words: Warning— victories may be smaller than they appear.

But as the economy strengthens and employers find themselves in a buyer’s market for low wage jobs, companies like Walmart will need to act more aggressively to keep their employees happy—especially with the increasingly attractive benefits, including tuition reimbursement, offered to employees of Starbucks and Chipotle.

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