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A third-party analysis conducted for the Colorado Community College System found that the Community College of Aurora (CCA) creates a significant positive impact on the business community and generates a return on investment to its major stakeholder groups—students, taxpayers, and society. Using a two-pronged approach that involves an economic impact analysis and an investment analysis, this study calculates the benefits to each of these groups. Results of the analysis reflect Fiscal Year (FY) 2015-16.
During the analysis year, CCA, its students, and alumni added $242 million in income to the CCA Service Area economy, approximately equal to 0.9% of the service area’s total gross regional product (GRP). By comparison, this impact from the college is nearly as large as the entire Mining industry in the service area, which contains industries related to oil and gas extraction. The economic impacts of CCA break down as follows:
Operations Spending Impact
Student Spending Impact
Around 70% of CCA students originated from the CCA Service Area in FY 2015-16. A number of these students would have left the service area if not for CCA. These retained students spent money on groceries, transportation, rent, and so on at service area businesses.
The expenditures of retained students during the analysis year added approximately $3.5 million in income to the CCA Service Area economy.
Alumni Spending Impact
Over the years, students have studied at CCA and entered or re-entered the workforce with newly-acquired skills. Today, thousands of these former students are employed in the CCA Service Area.
The accumulated contribution of former students currently employed in the service area workforce amounted to $212.6 million in added income during the analysis year.
The study was conducted by Emsi, a leading provider of economic impact studies and labor market data to educational institutions, workforce planners, and regional developers in the U.S. and internationally.