Economic Impact Increases


(July 13, 2013) According to the release of the University System of Georgia’s annual economic impact study, Armstrong’s impact on the Savannah region increased over the 2011 fiscal year. From July 1, 2011 through June 30, 2012, Armstrong’s economic impact exceeded $214 million. The 2011 economic impact was close to $209 million. Much of this gain was seen in jobs data, which rose 9.8 percent.

The annual economic impact study is conducted on behalf of the University System of Georgia by the Selig Center for Economic Growth in the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business and is directed by Jeffrey M. Humphries, director of the Selig Center.

The total economic impact figure is derived from both payroll and goods and services, which came to more than $108 million, and student spending, which exceeded $106 million. The university accounted for 2,276 jobs in the region, plus an additional 43 jobs generated from capital improvements, such as Armstrong’s new Learning Commons. The jobs number reflects not only positions on campus but also work generated in the community due to university-related spending on goods, services and payroll.

“The regional impact extends far beyond the jobs, dollars and spending data,” explained Michael Toma, Armstrong’s Fuller E. Callaway Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Regional Analysis. “The cultural fabric of the region is enhanced by many fine arts performances, lecture series, distinguished guests and special events hosted on campus. In addition, the community-mindedness and civic engagement of Armstrong students, faculty and staff contribute greatly to the region, such as the nearly 600 individuals who volunteered for off-campus service projects during the fall and spring Treasure Savannah Day of Service campaigns.”

The University System of Georgia’s statewide economic impact rose 7.4 percent over 2011 to a record-high $14.1 billion of direct and indirect spending fueling the regions served by the system’s 31 colleges and universities. This $14.1 billion represents a $7 billion increase since fiscal year 1999–or 98 percent growth in the system’s economic impact on Georgia’s communities. The 2012 study found that Georgia’s public university system generated nearly 139,263 full- and part-time jobs, or 3.6 percent of all the jobs in Georgia. One job out of every 28 in the State of Georgia is due to the University System.

“The workforce development impacts are arguably much more significant than the dollar spending impacts,” added Toma. “Graduates’ labor market skills are significantly enhanced by their education and thus, life-long earnings potential is substantially higher because of matriculation from Armstrong.”

The full study with data for all 31 USG institutions is available at: http://www.usg.edu/economic_development/documents/usg_Impact_fy2012.pdf .

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

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