Wake Forest University’s $3.3 billion economic value to region measured

(Winston-Salem, N.C. – Feb. 18, 2015) – A comprehensive analysis of the economic impact of higher education in North Carolina has found that Wake Forest University created $3.3 billion of added economic value during the 2012-13 fiscal year.

The study was commissioned by the University of North Carolina system, the North Carolina Community College System and North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities (NCICU). Wake Forest University is an NCICU member.

Conducted by Economic Modeling Specialists International, the study is the first-ever multi-sector analysis of higher education’s impact on the state’s economy, and one of the most comprehensive reports of its kind ever done for a single state.

The total economic impact is broken down into several categories that include operations spending, construction spending, student and visitor spending and business start-up impact. It also includes research and clinical spending which encompasses Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.

“This analysis demonstrates that what we do at Wake Forest University has a significant impact on our local and regional economies and puts the economic value of the University into perspective,” said Wake Forest President Nathan Hatch.

Overall, the public and private colleges and universities had an impact of $63.5 billion in state, including payroll, operations, the purchase of goods and services, start-up companies, and spending generated by students and alumni.

Other notable facts about Wake Forest from the report include:
• Student spending impact is $41.9 million. Around 75 percent of graduate and undergraduate students attending Wake Forest originated from outside the region and their spending impact affects a multitude of businesses.
• Out-of-region visitors attracted by Wake Forest activities brought new dollars to the economy through their spending at hotels, restaurants, gas stations and other regional businesses. Visitor spending added $23.4 million to the area.
• The accumulated contribution of alumni currently employed in the service area work force amounted to $294.2 million in income added to the area economy, which is equivalent to creating 3,971 new jobs.

The 36 campuses of NCICU, which together enroll almost 90,000 students from around the world, generated a combined $14.2 billion in added state income. This includes more than $4 billion on payroll and benefits for 66,309 full-time and part-time employees and $6.8 billion on goods and services to carry out their day-to-day operations, research, and clinical activities.

The rest comes from construction and the spending of their students, visitors, start-up companies, and alumni, which in turn creates more spending and employment across the state. The added state income, or ad¬ditional Gross State Product, of $14.2 billion created by NCICU’s institutions is equal to approximately 3.2 percent of the total Gross State Product of North Carolina, and is equivalent to creating 219,590 new jobs.
The full report and NCICU sector report are available at: www.ncicu.org/economic-impact-2015. The North Carolina Business Higher Ed Foundation, the N.C. Community Colleges Foundation, the University of North Carolina system and NCICU campuses funded the study.

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