WILBERFORCE — Central State University was recently included in an economic impact study conducted for the Inter-University Council of Ohio indicating that the state’s public universities, their students, and regional alumni added $42 billion in income to the state economy in 2016-17.
The $42 billion figure represents about 6.7 percent of Ohio’s total gross state product.
Conducted by Economic Modeling Specialists International in Moscow, Idaho, the study demonstrates how the value of public universities in Ohio positively influences both the lives of students and the state’s economy. The 14 universities serve a range of industries in Ohio, support local businesses and benefit society as a whole from an expanded economy and improved quality of life. The benefits also extend to the state government through increased tax revenues and public-sector savings.
The universities’ $42 billion of economic impact supported 558,841 jobs in 2016-17. That means one of every 12 jobs in Ohio is supported by the activities of universities and their students.
“As a driver of the economy, the impact that public universities have in Ohio is undeniable,” said Dr. Cynthia Jackson-Hammond, president of Central State University. “Our economic focus at Central State is to develop and contribute to a high performing workforce, continue to seek innovative ways to build business partnerships and to drive economic vitality that benefits the University and local communities.”
The study makes clear that whether from a student perspective, a taxpayer perspective or a social perspective, higher education’s return on investment is solid. The study reports, for example, that students at Ohio’s public universities realize a 13.7 percent return on their investment – or $4.60 in future earnings for every $1 a student spends on tuition, supplies and opportunity costs.
“When it comes right down to it, Ohio’s public universities are one of the best investments available,” said IUC president Bruce Johnson. “University graduates benefit from a significant earnings premium. Public universities generate more tax dollars than they take. They create and retain wealth. And they perform better than the stock market. These are compelling reasons why supporting higher education should be a public policy priority in Ohio.”
The benefits to students are reflected largely in increased earnings over a lifetime. Benefits to taxpayers consist primarily of taxes paid to state government and used to benefit the state. Taxpayers realize additional benefits in the form of reduced costs incurred by the state to pay for healthcare, crime, and unemployment.
For additional information about benefits provided by Ohio public universities, please visit – https://forwardohio.org/