Last month, the College of Southern Nevada released an economic impact study that shows CSN is a profitable investment for students, businesses and taxpayers.
The study, which was conducted over the summer by third party Economic Modeling Specialists, Inc. (EMSI), found that last school year’s student body alone will generate about $93.3 million in labor income in the state economy each year. This year, CSN will enroll more students, which will most likely have a positive impact on that number. In addition, the increased productivity of workers due to the accumulation of past and present CSN skills in the region creates around $772.8 million in added income each year.
This study shows that CSN is a strong investment that generates real returns for our economy and quality of life.
Other interesting facts:
- Over the course of a working lifetime, associate’s degree graduates from CSN earn $414,000 more than someone with a high school diploma.
- Nevada taxpayers receive a rate of return of 9.2 percent on their investment in CSN, far better than the average rate of return on stocks and bonds.
- Once CSN’s current students become active in the workforce, they will promote business output, raise consumer spending, and increase property income in the state. All of this contributes an additional $85.7 million in taxable income each year.
- CSN’s total contribution is approximately equal to 18,150 average-wage jobs, or 1.1% of the total regional economy.
One of my favorite quotes from the report: “Worthwhile public projects often generate negative taxpayer perspective returns, because the role of government is to provide services that the public wants but that the business sector may find unprofitable … But unlike most government endeavors funding for CSN generates strong results from both the social and taxpayer perspectives. Economists generally assume a 3% discount rate in analyzing government investments, assuming that governments can obtain unsecured loans at a rate of 3% or receive a 3% return on any excess funds, if they were invested. Since CSN’s taxpayer rate of return of 9.2% is greater than 3%, state and local governments actually make money on the investment. By funding the college, therefore, other recipients of state and local funding are actually subsidized through the revenues generated by the college.”
The growing demand for CSN services is in part due to Nevada’s weak economy and high unemployment rate. But our data show what higher education officials have been saying for years: That postsecondary education contributes to economic health. A growing student body at CSN indicates that more Nevadans are learning valuable skills to improve their lives in addition to increased productivity and income in Nevada.
Please take a greater look at CSN’s economic impact and go to www.csn.edu/economicimpact to review the entire study.