Kennesaw State University’s economic impact exceeds $1.3 billion in fiscal year 2015

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Consolidated “New U” is fourth largest economic engine in the USG

KENNESAW, Ga. (May 19, 2016) — Kennesaw State University has become an economic juggernaut, topping $1.3 billion in economic impact in fiscal year 2015, according to the University System of Georgia’s economic impact report released May 10. The total impact of all 31 institutions on their host communities was $15.5 billion in FY 2015.

Just as students of the “New U” are benefitting from a broader selection of activities from which to choose and with which to engage, the regional economy is benefitting from the combined finances of Kennesaw State University and Southern Polytechnic State University.

Of the FY 2015 total, $816 million is initial spending by the institutions for personnel services and operating expenses and student spending. The remaining $498 million of the output impact was created by re-spending – the multiplier effect of the dollars that are spent again in the region. On average, every dollar of initial spending generates an additional 46 cents for the economy of the region that hosts the institution.

“We’re not just bigger, we’re better as a result of consolidation,” said President Daniel S. Papp. “These numbers are a great representation of the positive impact we’re having on our students, the communities we serve and the state of Georgia. We’re proud to contribute so significantly to the economic well being of the state.”

The USG study was conducted by the Selig Center for Economic Growth at the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business, which analyzed data collected between July 1, 2014, and June 30, 2015, to calculate the university’s economic impact.

“These benefits permeate both the private and public sectors of the host communities,” said Jeffrey M. Humphreys, director of the Selig Center. “For example, for each job created on campus, there are 2.1 off-campus jobs that exist because of spending related to the college or university. These economic impacts demonstrate that continued emphasis on colleges and universities as a pillar of the state’s economy translates into jobs, higher incomes, and greater production of goods and services.”

According to the survey, the collective employment impact of all institutions on their host communities in FY 2015, including multiplier effects, is 150,191 full- and part-time jobs. Approximately 32 percent of these positions are on campus (48,785 University System employees) and 68 percent (101,406 jobs) are off-campus positions in either the private or public sectors. The 150,191 jobs generated by the University System account for 3.5 percent of all the nonfarm jobs in Georgia, or about one job in 28.

Serving more than 33,000 students, Kennesaw State University’s collective employment impact in FY 2015 was 11,608 full- and part-time jobs, including 2,724 jobs on campus, which created 8,884 jobs off-campus in either the private or public sectors.

In a nod to the University’s continued emphasis on economic growth, Papp named Charles Ross as Kennesaw State’s first vice president for economic development and community engagement. Ross serves as the University’s chief officer focused on deploying resources to aid economic development and expand relationships with off-campus communities. He also oversees and manages Kennesaw State’s Office of Community Engagement and the Office of Government Relations, as well as chairing the KSU Economic Development Task Force and serving as the University’s chief liaison to the Cobb County Chamber’s Competitive EDGE Project.

To download the USG’s full economic impact report, go to:


A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit