Study reveals Gordon State’s Latest Economic Impact Exceeds $129 Million

The University System of Georgia touts $18.6 Billion Economic Impact to the State

Gordon State College continues to empower the region and contributed more than $129 million to the regional economy and provided 1,088 jobs in fiscal year 2020, according to a report released Monday by the University System of Georgia.

The fiscal year spanned July 1, 2019, to June 30, 2020.

Of the college’s total job impact, 305 jobs existed on campus with 783 off-campus jobs that existed due to institution-related spending.

In FY20, Gordon had more than 3,200 students enrolled.

“Our five-year strategic plan, Building the Power of WE! is in motion, and we are seeing the benefits of our collaboration with partnerships within our region,” said GSC President Kirk A. Nooks. “We know our graduates leave Gordon equipped with The Highlander EDGE, which gives them an advantage in the workforce.”

The Highlander EDGE are noted qualities that set Gordon graduates apart: Engaged Innovators, Dedicated Scholars, Gifted Communicators and Ethical Leaders.

The report shows that the University System of Georgia (USG) played a critical role in the state’s recovery and recorded a statewide economic impact of $18.6 billion for fiscal year 2020, a 0.6 percent increase over fiscal year 2019. USG also generated 155,010 jobs.

Additionally, a new study shows that Class of 2020 graduates on average are predicted to earn $852,162 more over the course of their career as a result of their degree from a USG institution.

“With strong support from the state and significant planning from our campuses, USG’s economic impact on local communities across Georgia held steady despite a challenging year,” Acting Chancellor Teresa MacCartney said. “At the same time, a degree from a USG institution continues to add real value to the lives of our graduates and their families. We remain focused on doing everything in our power to help more Georgians complete college and ensure our state has a well-prepared, highly skilled workforce to grow Georgia’s economy.”

The annual economic impact study revealed every dollar spent by USG institutions generates an additional 47 cents for the regional economy.

Of the 155,010 jobs generated by USG, 34 percent are on campus, while the remaining 66 percent of those jobs are located within institutions’ home communities. On average, each on-campus job led to the creation of two additional off-campus jobs as a result of spending by the institution.

The 2020 study also showed $12.7 billion of the $18.6 billion came from direct spending by institutions, while $5.9 billion came from additional spending within their local communities.

The annual study is conducted on behalf of the Board of Regents by Jeffrey M. Humphreys, Ph.D., director of the Selig Center for Economic Growth in the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business.

This year, Humphreys and Alexandra Hill of the Selig Center also conducted a companion study titled “Lifetime Earnings for University System of Georgia Class of 2020.” The Center’s research shows how work-life earnings increase substantially with each step up in postsecondary educational attainment, a finding that holds true for both Georgia and the nation as a whole.

The University System of Georgia (USG) 2020 graduates who will work in Georgia, can expect lifetime earnings of $175 billion, of which $59 billion (34 percent) can be directly attributed to their degrees.

More specifically, higher education credentials increase the work-life earnings of the median Georgia resident by $238,455 (certificate), $377,000 (associate), and $1,152,500 (bachelor’s degree). Beyond a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree is worth an additional $247,000 and a professional degree is worth $1,015,000. Finally, a PhD increases work-life earnings by $638,000 over a master’s degree.

The full economic impact report and the lifetime earnings report are available online.