February 26, 2019 Grantley Adams

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WINSTED, CT – February 26, 2019 – For the first time the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities (CSCU), commissioned a study to thoroughly examine the overall economic impact of all of its 17 institutions on the state of Connecticut.

The seventeen institutions that comprise CSCU include four regional comprehensive state universities, 12 community colleges and one online state college that work together to offer hundreds of affordable education options to the state’s residents.  Every year, CSCU institutions, with its 10,687 employees, enroll more than 140,000 credit and non-credit students, 3% of whom come from outside the state.  In total, CSCU offers more than 1,300 different programs of study, which include 684 Associate Degrees, 203 Bachelor’s Degrees, 121 Master’s Degrees, 443 Certificates, and 8 Doctoral Degrees.  These options make it possible for Connecticut residents to take the next steps in their lives and careers regardless of where they currently stand in their educational path.  Collectively, the CSCU system of 17 institutions generated approximately 4.1% of the total gross state product (GSP) of Connecticut, which equates to over $11.1 billion in state income during the analysis year.  This figure includes a combination of $9.9 billion in alumni income, $1.0 billion in operating spending and $138 million in current student spending.  For every $1.00 of public money invested in CSCU, taxpayers will receive $3.80 in return over the course of students’ working life.  The average annual rate of return for taxpayers is 9.4%.

The economic impact study conducted for Northwestern Connecticut Community College (NCCC) indicated the college, its students and regional alumni added $174.8 million to the local economy in FY 2016-2017. The value of NCCC influences both the lives of the students and also the regional economy.

The study found that for every $1.00 invested in NCCC, Connecticut will gain $5.70 in added state revenue and social savings.  In addition, for every $1.00 students spend on their NCCC education they will gain $6.10 in lifetime earnings; and for every $1.00 invested by Connecticut taxpayers in NCCC, they will gain $1.70 in added tax revenue and savings.

80% of NCCC graduates work in Connecticut within 9 months of graduation.  The report also touched on the accumulated contributions of NCCC alumni currently employed in the regional workforce, showing an annual income of $150.7 million. Northwestern Connecticut Community College added $16.1 million in added income to the region during the assessment year, as a result of its day to day operations. The spending by NCCC students while in college, during the same period, was $1.9 million or the equivalent of 30+ jobs, while construction spending was $6.1 million or the equivalent of 75+ jobs.

“The numbers speak for themselves,” said NCCC President, Dr. Michael Rooke, “and confirms that Northwestern Connecticut Community College and the CSCU system as a whole are a great investment for the students, the community and the state.  This data supports what we have been saying, that education, and higher education in particular, are an essential element in any state’s economic vitality, and in an increasingly technological world, this investment will pay off if the state values and supports it.   We are grateful for the support of our community.”

This study was conducted by Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI), of Moscow Idaho, a leading global provider of economic impact and labor market data utilizing analysis of industry and employment data, academic and financial reports, US Bureau of Labor Statistics, US Census data, and a variety of sources related to education and social behavior.

The results show that Northwestern Connecticut Community College and CSCU  as a system, create a positive net impact on the state economy and generates a positive return on investment for students, taxpayers  and society overall.