UMass pumped $6.1B into Mass. economy in 2013

AMHERST — The University of Massachusetts system contributed $6.1 billion to the Massachusetts economy last year, with growth over the past three years driven by unprecedented levels of construction projects. Spending tied to UMass employees, operations, research, students and construction was responsible to varying degrees for over 45,000 jobs, according to a university report released this week.

The UMass Amherst flagship campus contributed $1.932 billion in economic activity to the Massachusetts economy last year and supports nearly 9,000 external jobs, the most among UMass campuses, the study by the UMass Donahue Institute.

The report indicates that UMass Amherst is a key economic driver in western Massachusetts and the state as a whole, affecting every person in the state. In fiscal year 2013, UMass Amherst generated an eight-fold return on the state’s total $241 million investment into the campus through local operating expenditures of the campus, one-time major construction expenditures and the spending of the campus’ 5,159 full- and part-time faculty and staff and 24,871 undergraduate and graduate students.

Much of the UMass-Amherst spending flows beyond the campus to a variety of suppliers of goods and services, generating significant benefits for the Massachusetts economy. A notable share makes its way to employees in the form of salaries and wages, which is then circulated into the Massachusetts economy through typical household spending. At the same time, the significant amount of money the campus’ students directly spend off-campus generates additional economic activity for the region.

The report finds that the spending of the UMass Amherst campus, its employees and students helped to support an additional 8,957 jobs in the state throughout fiscal year 2013, which is the largest external labor force braced by any UMass campus.

“This report demonstrates that in addition to providing academic excellence in a wide variety of disciplines and internationally recognized research, the University of Massachusetts is a significant economic driver for the Commonwealth,” said UMass President Robert L. Caret.

In the budget year that ended last June, the university employed 15,782 full- and part-time faculty and staff and had an enrollment of 67,409.

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