An economic impact study by the Southwestern Ohio Council for Higher Education (SOCHE) shows Clark State Community College nearly doubled its local impact in fiscal year 2016. SOCHE completed the last economic impact study in 2011.
The total economic impact of Clark State on Champaign, Clark, Greene and Logan Counties reached approximately $161 million last year. This includes the impact of operations, student spending and capital investment. The college directly supported 1,482 jobs and indirectly supported another 425 full- and part-time jobs in the four-county region.
"SOCHE's impact study reinforces the role of higher education as a regional economic driver,” explained Dr. Jo Alice Blondin, president of Clark State and chair of the SOCHE Board of Trustees. “Through changing times and economic climates, our two- and four-year intuitions have continued to provide the quality training and education needed for individuals to better themselves, their careers and their lives. Through internships, capstones and other immersive work experiences, our students are connecting with in-demand industries and employers to advance our regional economy.”
The 2011 SOCHE study measured Clark State’s economic impact on Clark, Champaign, Greene and Logan Counties at $96 million and included an area wage impact of $33.6 million and 728 jobs. Blondin said as Clark State continues to grow programming and add value to the community, she expects the college’s economic impact to continue to increase.
“It is important to demonstrate Clark State’s value and impact to the communities that we serve,” said Blondin. “Our focus is on student success and economic prosperity—and the public and our students make a significant investment in Clark State, so we want to share the impact of that investment.”
The majority of jobs supported by Clark State resulted from student spending in the local economy. The college’s operations led to $51.3 million in wages paid in the area.
Economic impact figures represent the effects that a given development project and its associated economic activities have upon a surrounding community. Developments affect local communities through the purchases of goods and services made by the facilities and its employees. In turn, those local businesses and households purchase goods and services at local businesses. Applying the relevant multipliers for each industry allowed the Economics Center to give a realistic picture of the economic impact of Clark State’s capital and ongoing operations expenditures as well as student spending.
“Clark State is an incredible workforce and economic development partner in Springfield and Clark County,” said Horton Hobbs, vice president, economic development for the Chamber of Greater Springfield/Community Improvement Corporation of Springfield-Clark County. “Their aggressive approach to curriculum development and corporate training have become a hallmark of our successes with job growth. I know that when called upon they will produce incredible results, but more important, they are always working behind the scenes to prepare our workforce for the opportunities that lie ahead. With that, brings a tremendous amount of confidence in their entire organization.”
The SOCHE economic impact study concluded that Clark State is embedded in the local community and economy of the four-county region it serves; it directly and indirectly supports the local economy through the college’s purchases and its ability to attract students and workers, who then expend money in Champaign, Clark, Greene and Logan Counties.
The college also brought local governments $1.8 million in gross tax revenues and the State of Ohio $6.1 million in 2016.
“As demonstrated by our economic impact, Clark State is both an excellent investment and a strong steward of resources,” said Blondin.
Celebrating its 50th anniversary, SOCHE is the trusted and recognized regional leader for higher collaboration, working with more than 20 colleges and universities to transform their communities and economies through the education, employment and engagement of nearly 150,000 students in southwest Ohio. For more information about SOCHE, visit http://www.soche.org/.