ALBANY — Albany State University continues to be an important contributor to southwest Georgia’s regional economy.
An annual economic impact study shows that in Fiscal Year 2020 ASU contributed $181.9 million to the local economy, supported 2,328 jobs and businesses in eight local counties where its students, faculty and staff live, work and shop. ASU’s regional impact is part of the University System of Georgia’s collective statewide impact.
Albany State’s 2020 graduates who work in Georgia are expected to bring in a combined of $2.7 billion in lifetime earnings, of which $866.8 million can be attributed to their degrees. The University provides opportunities for nearly 6,000 students each year to grow and explore paths that can make a difference in the world and in the lives of others.
“Albany State University is a driving force in Georgia’s economy, especially in this region as we fulfill our mission of educating diverse student talent that is leading in the fields of health, education, arts, STEM, business and more,” ASU President Marion Fedrick said. “ASU is an essential part of the fabric of the community and the state. We are proud of the economic impact the University makes to the state and beyond.”
Each year, the University System of Georgia’s Board of Regents commissions an economic impact study conducted by the Selig Center for Economic Growth at the Terry College of Business at The University of Georgia. The study reports that this fiscal year, the USG served as a significant source of stability and played a critical role in the state’s recovery with an $18.6 billion statewide economic impact. USG’s impact grew 0.6 percent over Fiscal Year 2019. The system directly and indirectly generated 155,010 jobs.
In addition, the study found every dollar spent directly by USG institutions and their students generated an additional 47 cents for the surrounding region’s economy. While $12.7 billion of the $18.6 billion was a result of that direct spending, the remaining $5.9 billion was additional spending within local communities sparked by the presence of 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 work force to grow Georgia’s economy.”
The Selig Center also conducted a companion study led by Humphreys and Alexandra P. Hill titled “Lifetime Earnings for University System of Georgia Class of 2020.” The lifetime earnings report showed how work-life earnings increase substantially with each step up in earned degree.
In addition, the study shows that higher education credentials increase the work-life earnings of the median Georgia resident by $238,455 (certificate), $377,000 (associate’s degree), 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 an additional $1,015,000. Finally, a Ph.D. increases work-life earnings by an additional $638,000 over a master’s degree.
The full economic impact report and the lifetime earnings report are available online on the USG website.