UA generates $3 billion in economic impact for community and students



The University of Akron (UA) creates immense value for its students, alumni, the City of Akron, and the six-county Northeast Ohio service area it directly impacts, consisting of Cuyahoga, Portage, Medina, Stark, Summit and Wayne Counties. UA recently completed an economic impact study, which showed the University added an impressive $3 billion in income to the region’s economy in FY 2021-2022, a value approximately equal to 1.5% of the total gross regional product. The $3 billion impact supported 36,324 regional jobs, with one out of every 48 jobs in the UA service area supported by the activities of the University and its students.

Ucm-economic-impact-inforgraphic.pngThe study, conducted by Lightcast, a global leader in labor market analytics, highlights the key role the University plays in helping students increase their employability and achieve their individual potential, the ways it facilitates research and industry development, draws visitors and students to the region, and generates new dollars and opportunities for the service area. 

“We are extremely committed to educating our students and connecting them to world-class employers to help foster continued growth in career earnings,” said UA President Gary L. Miller. “We also view our role as an economic generator very seriously, rigorously supporting workforce development in the region and championing innovation and entrepreneurship that makes a difference in Northeast Ohio and the City of Akron.”

According to the study results, a UA degree offers students a gain of $6.70 in lifetime earnings for every $1 invested, which means that in return for their educational investment, students receive a value of $1.7 billion in increased earnings over their career.

The study also highlighted the ways that UA promotes economic growth in its service area through its direct expenditures and the resulting expenditures of visitors, students and regional businesses. The net impact of UA alumni who remain in the regional workforce was $2.7 billion, and the expenditures of relocated and retained students added $53.7 million to the service area.

Numerous start-up companies have also formed as a result of programs and knowledge at UA, adding $10.4 million to the local economy. University faculty are valued industry partners, helping to develop new research and innovation. Faculty have received 135 invention disclosures, filed 204 new patent applications and produced 18 licenses since FY 2018-2019.

In addition to working with UA, Lightcast also completed a study focused on the economic impact of all state universities that found Ohio’s 14 public universities together delivered $68.9 billion in total economic impact in FY 2021-2022, representing 8.8% of Ohio’s total gross state product. The study, conducted on behalf of the Inter-University Council of Ohio, also calculated that activities of the public universities and their students support 866,782 jobs – one in eight Ohio jobs.


Media Contact: Cristine Boyd; 330-972-6476;