Report: Grove City College’s economic impact tops $175 million

Grove City College is an economic engine that’s responsible, directly and indirectly, for more than $175 million in statewide impact annually, according to a new study of Pennsylvania’s independent colleges and universities.

The College pumps more than $85 million directly into the state, regional and local economies, according to the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Pennsylvania (AICUP.) Indirect and induced effects generated by the College total almost $90 million, AICUP reports.

Grove City College also “supports and sustains” 1,547 jobs in the state, including those employed directly by the College and others created by supply and equipment vendors, contractors and service jobs to support students, faculty, staff and visitors, AICUP’s analysis revealed.

The report found that the College, a private non-profit corporation that does not accept federal taxpayer funding, helps generate more than $8 million in tax revenue every year for state and local government coffers.

Data for Grove City College comes from a statewide study conducted by AICUP in 2018 that finds independent nonprofit colleges and universities have an outsize impact in the Keystone State. According to the report:

  • Statewide, Grove City College and other independent colleges and universities generated $24 billion annually in economic impact, supported 200,000 jobs and produced about $1 billion in tax revenue.
  • Regionally, private colleges generated almost a billion dollars ($931,877, 593) in economic impact in northwestern Pennsylvania, supported 7,965 jobs and produced $43 million in tax revenue.

AICUP, which represents more than 90 independent non-profit colleges and universities in Pennsylvania, says the report clearly illustrates the value of private higher education to communities beyond their campuses. Grove City College is a member of AICUP.

As well as serving as drivers of local economies and job creators, independent colleges like Grove City act as “community anchors” that vitalize towns and cities by enriching cultural life, providing a philanthropic and volunteer base and impacting lives “way beyond the economic measures that are the highlight of this report,” according to AICUP President Tom Foley.

The study focuses on how Grove City College contributes economically to the local community and the commonwealth through dollars spent by the College, students and families, faculty, staff and vendors, jobs created and public services provided. That positive impact on the economy is just one of the ways that the College serves the greater good of the community of which it is an integral part.

The report highlights Grove City College’s Project on Rural Ministry, a Lilly grant-funded project that aims to develop through dialog and action strategies for strengthening the ministry of pastors and their congregations in Pennsylvania, New York and Ohio. The project is a community outreach and a research project that involves 30 pastors, several academic departments and faculty members, the College’s Center for Entrepreneurship + Innovation and students from different disciplines.

The report cites former Grove City College president Richard G. Jewell ’67, who notes that independent colleges “have been bulwarks during times of societal change and workforce pipelines in times good and bad; they have provided access to a wealth of community events and activities that would otherwise simply not be available in the towns, boroughs, cities and counties in which they thrive.”

Report: Grove City College’s economic impact tops $175 million

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