As the economy’s prolonged slump continues, it’s become all the more important for educational institutions to demonstrate their worth to their communities. Community colleges play an especially vital role in the economic development of their service regions. This has been shown time and again, but two recent articles serve as a healthy reminder:
South Plains College in Texas has unveiled the details of an EMSI impact study that shows the two-year college contributes $240.2 million per year to Lubbock and Hockley counties. That’s roughly 2.3% of the area’s total annual income, according to the school’s website. You can find more here.
In an op-ed piece released this week in The Advocate of Stamford, Conn., the president of Norwalk Community College, David L. Levinson, cites a statewide study done by EMSI that demonstrated the high rate of return for investing in the Connecticut community college system. He writes: “And as our population becomes ever more culturally and economically diverse, this is the time for America’s community colleges to shine and be validated — for they are truly an ‘economic stimulus package’ that give taxpayers more than they take. Every $1 in taxes invested today in the Connecticut community college system returns a cumulative $16.40, according to a 2008 economic study by Economic Modeling Specialists Inc.”
With higher education budgets getting pared down in nearly every state at the same time community college enrollment is skyrocketing, showing the value of your institution can go a long way in convincing state legislators to reconsider or at least minimize funding cuts. Proper support is vital considering community colleges are on the front line of training the growing numbers of jobseekers and displaced workers.
For more on the value of EMSI’s Socioeconomic Impact (SEIM) studies, feel free to contact us.