PLANO (Nov. 3, 2015) — Collin College impacted the local economy to the tune of more than a half-billion dollars in a single year, according to a new study released recently. The study, called Empowering Prosperity, details the college’s economic impact on the business community as well as the return on investment to our community, taxpayers, students and alumni.
The study stemmed from community feedback showing that many local residents were scratching their heads about the college’s role in the economy. Economic Modeling Specialties International, an economic and labor market research firm, conducted the study using a model developed specifically for community colleges.
“College towns have booming economies for a reason, and, as a taxpayer, I want to know the return on my investment,” said Dr. Bob Collins, who is a founding trustee and chair of the Collin College Board of Trustees. “The revenue and savings may not be visible, but higher education is empowering prosperity in our region. In the course of 30 years, the college has become a major engine for commerce.”
The service area for Collin College spans Collin and Rockwall counties along with the city of The Colony, so the impact stretches across a populace of more than one million.
In the first section of Empowering Prosperity, a regional economic impact analysis looked at the impact of Collin College through increased consumer spending and enhanced business productivity in terms of added income. The data showed Collin College’s overall annual economic impact at $528.5 million. That figure includes the added income each year for alumni employed in the local workforce and student spending in the community, as well as jobs and operations at the college itself.
“If you consider the impact of Collin College alumni the workforce, that alone contributes $372.6 million to the economy every year,” said Collin College District President Dr. Neil Matkin.
Overall, alumni with an estimated 3.4 million credit hours of Collin College education are active in the regional workforce, and the added income created by Collin College and its students supported the equivalent of 10,145 jobs.
“Corporations look very carefully at higher education when they are considering a move or extending business into a new market. Collin College is very attractive to corporate America because we are flexible and can move quickly to strike new partnerships and provide critical training,” he said.
The final section of Empowering Prosperity is an investment analysis looking at cost versus benefits for students, community members and taxpayers within the Texas economy. For every dollar invested at the college, the study shows that a student will receive $3.70 in lifelong income, taxpayers gain $4.20 in added benefits, and the community as a whole will receive a $13.70 for as long as alumni remain active in the state workforce.
Collin College students collectively will receive an estimated $1.2 billion in increased earnings over their working lives. They also benefit from the equivalent of a 15.6 percent rate of return on their investment.
The State of Texas will see $6 billion in added state income over the course of students’ working lives, and the community as a whole will benefit from $86.9 million in social savings as costs decrease for crime, unemployment and health care across the state.
State and local taxpayer returns come as Collin College students earn more and pay more tax dollars into the economy. Employers will also make higher tax payments as alumni increase their output and purchase more supplies and services. In the course of the students’ working careers, state and local governments will have collected $400.1 million in added tax dollars. As the demand for welfare, unemployment and crime reduces and wellness increases, the taxpayers will also benefit through $26.2 million in savings. The rate of return for state and local taxpayers is 12.7 percent.
For the full copy of the report, visit collin.edu/prosperity.
About Collin College
Collin College is a community college located in North Texas’ Collin County, the only public college in the county. One of the fastest-growing community colleges or universities in Texas, the college serves nearly 52,000 credit and continuing education students annually and offers more than 100 degrees and certificates in a wide range of disciplines. With seven campuses throughout the college district, Collin College is a partner to business, government and industry, providing customized training and workforce development. Collin College has locations in Plano (Spring Creek Campus), McKinney (Central Park Campus) and Frisco (Preston Ridge Campus). In addition, there are satellite centers in Allen, Plano and Rockwall. For more information, visit collin.edu.