A new study reveals that the Grand Rapids Community College (GRCC) had a $1 billion impact on the local economy in the 2020-21 fiscal year, with $726.6 million impacting Ottawa County alone. The majority of the impact comes from alumni, which accounts for $898.4 million, with operations spending at $110.2 million, student spending at $31.9 million, and construction spending at $7.3 million. The study also identified social benefits from the GRCC, including additional student income, business income, income from college activities, and social savings related to health, justice, and income assistance, valued at $2.8 billion.
Grand Rapids Community College Generates $1 Billion Regional Economic Impact
Report Findings on GRCC’s Economic Contributions
The study, “The Economic Value of the Grand Rapids Community College,” performed by Lightcast, analyzed the college’s regional impact in the 2020-21 fiscal year. Alumni contributions emerged as the major source of the total impact, contributing $898.4 million. Other factors include operations spending at $110.2 million, student spending at $31.9 million, and construction spending at $7.3 million.
Reaction from GRCC’s President
Charles Lepper, GRCC President, expressed satisfaction with the findings, stating the results prove GRCC is “a strong investment for students, taxpayers, and society.” He emphasized that GRCC boosts tax revenue, improves student employability, and enhances regional economic opportunities.
Economic Impact on Ottawa County
The executive summary reveals the college’s Ottawa County economic impact totaled $726.6 million, overlapping somewhat with Kent County’s $943.9 million impact. This figure represents 3.9 percent of Ottawa County’s total gross regional product and supports over 10,000 jobs – one in every 18 jobs in Ottawa.
GRCC’s Social and Economic Benefits
Lightcast’s report also unearthed social benefits from GRCC, including added student income, business income, income from college activities, and social savings of approximately $2.8 billion. For more information, visit grcc.edu.
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