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UMass a $4 Billion Economic Force in Massachusetts

5-Campus System Generates $8 in Economic Activity for Every $1 of State Investment

(Boston, Ma) -- The University of Massachusetts is one of the state's largest economic engines, generating $4 billion in economic activity each year, with every $1 of state support helping the university generate more than $8 in positive economic activity, according to a report released today.

If UMass were a private or commercial company, it would not only be a globally competitive firm but one of the state's largest drivers of economic growth. UMass is a $2 billion enterprise, with 15,000 employees - making it one of the top 10 employers in Massachusetts - generating $377 million in research and development investments and is the site of three recently awarded, highly competitive national research centers.

"UMass is the only higher education institution that touches every corner of the state," said Jack Wilson, President of the University of Massachusetts. "Our initiatives are driving the innovation, educating the talent and creating the jobs the Commonwealth needs for a bright and successful economic future."

While the state provides $524 million, or only 26 percent, of UMass' $2 billion annual operating budget, the university generates $4.3 billion in economic activity. Translated into employment terms, 90 private sector jobs are generated for every 100 UMass jobs.

UMass is one of the leading generators of new talent for the state's knowledge-based economy. With more than 57,000 students enrolled annually, UMass educates more Massachusetts residents than any other higher education institution. Every year, the five-campus system graduates 11,000 students - more than 60 percent of whom stay to live and work in the Commonwealth.

"The University of Massachusetts is an absolutely critical source of talent for Raytheon and other high tech companies throughout the state," said Daniel L. Smith, President Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems.

Research conducted at UMass generates $28 million in technology licensing revenue each year, outpacing every other Massachusetts university. This revenue is in turn reinvested in the research enterprise, fostering a perpetual cycle of innovation.

The University's impact reaches all corners of the state. UMass generates talent, jobs, innovation and economic growth through its five-campus system, which stretches from Dartmouth on the south coast all the way to its flagship in Amherst, and incorporates the state's major urban centers, including Boston, Lowell and Worcester. UMass boasts 215,000 alumni living throughout the state, and also conducts more than 90 percent of the research that takes place outside of Route 128 - making it the largest university research enterprise in every region of the state outside of Greater Boston.

"UMass provides an outstanding return on the state's investment - through the talent and innovation it generates across the Commonwealth," said Richard Lord, President, Associated Industries of Massachusetts.

In the past three years alone, UMass has leveraged state matching grants to win national competitions to locate three national research centers, including a cutting-edge $40 million atmospheric sensing center, a $16 million nanotechnology center at Amherst and a $12 million nanotechnology center in Lowell. UMass helped to secure the Lowell center in partnership with Northeastern University and the University of New Hampshire.

"UMass fosters growth in the sectors that will bring jobs and talent to the state," said Wilson. "For example, our emerging life sciences network will spur innovation in biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and medical devices while at the same time our coastal marine science and technology corridor promotes growth in fishery management, ocean observation and homeland security."

The state of Massachusetts invests $524 million a year in UMass. The University is able to generate an additional $1.5 billion in funding from several sources, including the resources provided by our students and their families and federal and private research funding. UMass thus spends $2 billion annually to operate the five-campus system. According to economic analysis, that $2 billion in annual spending generates an additional $2.3 billion in economic activity, for a total economic impact of $4.3 billion. Therefore, every $1 the state invests in UMass helps the university generate $8 of economic activity.

The report, titled "UMass: A Strategic Investment: A Critical Asset for the Commonwealth's Economic Future," was developed by the UMass Donahue Institute, one of the state's largest providers of applied research and evaluation. The Institute based its analysis on actual university expenditures during fiscal year 2006.

Contact: Paul Jean, 617-482-0042

10/2/06

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Robert P. Connolly
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