According to a new study by Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI), the value of the Contra Costa Community College District in California is beyond the educational services for students to establish a positive impact on the regional economy.
The community college district consists of Contra Costa College, Diablo Valley College and Los Medanos College. In fiscal year 2016 to 2017, the district accumulated $1.8 billion in income to the Contra Costa County region, or 2.3 percent of the total gross regional product of the county, according to The Press.
“The results of the study confirms our district is a significant economic contributor to the community,” said governing board president Vicki Gordon. “In partnership with the business community, we are doing our part to provide the 21st century skills necessary to obtain good paying jobs for our graduates so they can stay in our community.”
The study also found several ways the district positively impacts the region’s economy, such as supporting one out of every 25 jobs through the activities of the district and its students, contributed $1.5 billion in added income as a result of increased earnings of district alumni and the organizations they work at, increased the average earnings for associate degree graduates by $11,500 more than a high school graduate during their mid-career, and benefitted society by teaching students who tend to be healthy, less reliant on social services and are civically engaged.
“It takes an entire community to create the quality of life that we enjoy here in Contra Costa County,” said district chancellor Dr. Fred Wood. “As a district, with colleges in every corner of the county, we are proud to be a key economic engine and workforce development partner so our local businesses can thrive in the global economy. This study once again shows that a community college education is a great investment for our students, their families and our taxpayers.”