UMass Dartmouth generates nearly half billion dollar annual economic impact

Donahue Institute study finds return on state investment is nearly 7 to 1, including 2,255 jobs beyond the campus

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UMass Dartmouth generates $466 million in statewide annual economic impact, including the creation of 2,255 jobs beyond the campus, according to a study released today by the Donahue Institute, the economic research unit of the University of Massachusetts.

The study measures the impact of the university’s local operating expenditures, major construction projects, and the spending of campus faculty, staff, and students. “UMass Dartmouth is a key economic driver in the Commonwealth, directly or indirectly affecting every person in the state,’’ according to the study.

“This study confirms that UMass Dartmouth is a powerful catalyst for the economic advancement of this region and the Commonwealth,” Interim Chancellor Peyton R. Helm said. “The data demonstrates that a dollar invested in UMass Dartmouth generates a remarkable return on investment for individuals and communities.”

Among the highlights of the study:

- Spending flows beyond the campus to a variety of suppliers of goods and services, generating significant benefits for the state and regional economy, including the creation of 2,255 non-UMass jobs.

- UMass Dartmouth spent $48 million on construction and related activity in 2015, generating 264 jobs. Projects include the expansion of the School for Marine Science and Technology, Charlton College of Business, classrooms, teaching laboratories, and learning spaces.

- As of fall 2014, UMass Dartmouth employed 1,329 full- and part-time faculty and staff whose salaries and wages circulate throughout the regional economy.

- The university’s 9,111 students as of fall 2014 directly spent a significant amount of money off-campus in the economy.

Beyond the impacts captured in the report, UMass Dartmouth, the only Massachusetts research university south of Boston, also generates economic activity through its research, teaching and community service enterprises.

- Students contribute more than $5 million of service to the community by providing 200,000-plus hours of activity. For instance, Charlton College of Business students assist individuals of modest means with their taxes, saving these individuals money that is then spent in the community.

- Scientists at the School for Marine Science and Technology have helped sustain the fishing industry, allowing New Bedford to retain its position as the number one fishing port in the nation.

- The UMass Dartmouth Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship is working with dozens of startup companies to incubate and grow their business. One of the recent “graduates” of the CIE is Aquatobix, which manufactures underwater remote controlled vehicles, and has set up its headquarters in Fall River.

-- The UMass Dartmouth College of Visual and Performing Arts in downtown New Bedford, which has been a catalyst for the development of that city’s creative economy.

-- The UMass Dartmouth Public Policy Center is examining the impact of housing development, from subsidized to market rate, on communities.


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