EMSI recently completed an Economic Impact Study for Washburn University, a publicly funded university in Topeka, Kan., and the results were striking.
Washburn contributes nearly $480 million in annual added income to the northeast Kansas economy, as reported in the Topeka Capital-Journal. But that’s not all. Students see a 15.9% average rate of return on their investment in WU and an increase of $5.60 in discounted lifetime income for every dollar invested in the four-year school established in 1865.
“What other kind of investment could a person hope to have year over year that it’s going to be a 16 percent rate of return?” Washburn President Jerry Farley told the Capital-Journal in December.
What other kind of investment could a person hope to have year over year that it’s going to be a 16 percent rate of return?” — Jerry Farley, Washburn University President
Washburn’s regional economic impact is derived from its daily operations, spending from students and visitors, and, most of all, from the institution’s alumni who continue to work in the region and expand the economy through their added skills and increased productivity. Measuring the impact of the increased human capital on a region is what sets EMSI’s Economic Impact Study apart from traditional impact reports.
Finally, the largest effect comes from Washburn students — both completers and non-completers. The study found the accumulated contribution of Washburn instruction received by former students over the past 30 years adds some $422.7 million annually to the 19-county region that makes up northeast Kansas.
There were 12,045 Washburn graduates in Shawnee County and 15,639 over 13 counties in northeast Kansas.
For the Washburn study, as it does for all impact studies, EMSI relied on local economic data and used a conservative modeling approach, so the impact figures are not inflated. EMSI has produced more than 1,000 such studies for colleges and universities in the US, UK, Canada, and Australia in the last decade. Read more at this link.