GGC worth $296 million to local economy last fiscal year

Georgia Gwinnett College continues to be a driving force in the local economy, according to an annual study of the University System of Georgia’s (USG) economic impact on the state.

“All colleges act as economic engines,” said Stas Preczewski, interim president. “This impact can be seen the most at the local level, but because of the way dollars are spent and re-spent, that impact is multiplied and spread throughout our Gwinnett region. This is one of the many ways in which GGC has become woven into the fabric of our community – not to mention the future value provided by our 1,200 newly minted, talented and productive graduates.” 

According to a July 10 news release issued by the USG, GGC was second among state colleges, generating $296 million in economic impact, including the creation of 3,029 jobs. The college itself employs 1,026, roughly aligning with the USG’s overall employment of about 33 percent of the jobs it creates. The other 67 percent are off-campus positions in either the private or public sectors. On average, for each job created on campus, there are two off-campus jobs that exist because of spending related to the institution.

To calculate the economic impact for FY12, the Selig Center for Economic Growth in the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business analyzed data collected between July 1, 2011, and June 30, 2012. The annual study is conducted on behalf of the USG Board of Regents and the study is conducted by Dr. Jeffrey M. Humphreys, director of the Selig Center.

In the report, the USG’s economic impact increased 7.4 percent from fiscal year 2011 to 2012 – a jump of $980 million to a new high of $14.1 billion of direct and indirect spending fueling the regions served by the system’s 31 colleges and universities. Most of the $14.1 billion consists of initial spending for salaries and fringe benefits, operating supplies and expenses, and other budgeted expenditures, as well as spending by students. This initial spending equaled $9.8 billion, or almost 69 percent of the total.

The remaining $4.4 billion, or 31 percent, was created by respending – the multiplier effect of the dollars that are spent again in the region. For every dollar of initial spending by a University System institution or its students, research found that, on average, an additional 45 cents was generated for the local economy.

The first study in the series calculated the USG’s impact at $7.2 billion in FY 1999. The latest $14.1 billion represents a $7.0 billion increase since FY 1999 – or 98 percent growth in the system’s economic impact on Georgia’s communities, far surpassing inflation, which was only 38 percent over the same time period.

Since the “Great Recession” (Dec. 2007-June 2009), the USG’s institutions proved their economic worth, with their economic impact rising by $2 billion – from FY 2008’s $12.1 billion to FY 2012’s $14.1 billion.

For the full study, visit http://www.usg.edu/economic_development/studies/year/2013.

Current and past studies can be found at: http://www.usg.edu/economic_development/publications/studies

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