Whether you are a student, taxpayer or business owner, you have likely benefited from Metropolitan Community College. Some benefits are apparent, such as an increase in earning power for graduates. Others are less obvious, such as fewer people drawing welfare and unemployment benefits.
In 2009, MCC in partnership with the Nebraska Community College Association, hired Economic Modeling Specialists Inc. of Moscow, Idaho, to provide the public with a clearer picture of the College’s impact on the local economy. The model EMSI used to measure MCC’s impact on the economy took more than a year to develop and has been subjected to peer review and field-tested on more than 350 different community and technical colleges throughout the United States and Canada. The results are based on solid economic theory, carefully drawn functional relationships and a wealth of national and local education-related data.
Four types of benefits were tracked: (1) regional economic benefits (contributions to local job and income formation); (2) earnings for graduates; (3) a broad collection of social benefits (improved health, reduced crime, lower welfare and unemployment); and (4) the return to taxpayers for their college support.
MCC benefits taxpayers by training skilled workers who help stimulate the local economy. A robust economy in turn produces higher tax revenues and lessens demand for taxpayer-supported social services.
- Taxpayers see a real return of 12 percent on their annual investment in community colleges.
- Every dollar of state or local tax money invested in MCC today will return $3.50.
- Education creates an incentive for positive changes. According to national studies, educated people are less likely to smoke, abuse alcohol, draw welfare or unemployment benefits or commit crimes. The study estimates that $3.1 million per year is avoided in the cost for tax-supported social services.
Education at MCC is a great investment, and tuition is affordable. Former and current students will earn more throughout their lifetime.
- More education translates into higher earnings. Students obtaining a one-year certificate earn 81 percent more than someone without a high school diploma and 16 percent more than a high school graduate.
- For every credit hour a student completes at MCC, they will increase their annual income an average of $146 a year with increased productivity.
- A typical MCC student recovers all costs of education (including wages forgone while attending college) in seven years.
- An associate degree graduate will earn $371,500 more than a high school graduate over the course of a working lifetime.
The education and training offered at MCC promotes new business development, helps existing businesses with special training for employees and creates long-term economic growth for Nebraska. The contributions of graduates help build businesses and communities throughout the state.
- MCC creates a ´brain gain´ for the metropolitan area, with 95 percent of graduates staying in the area after college, benefitting many local businesses.
- In FY 2006-07, the MCC service area workforce embodied approximately 5.5 million credit hours of past and present MCC training. This training leads to higher productivity and increased earnings at a rate of about $787 million.
To learn more about MCC’s impact on the economy, view the Executive Summary and summaries by perspective: Taxpayer Perspective Summary, Social Benefits Perspective Summary, Business Perspective Summary and Student Perspective Summary.