In addition, the ERAU-Prescott campus is now estimated to have had an economic impact of $392 million across Arizona last year, a 41% increase in the past four years. The university provides about 3,000 permanent jobs, up 38% from four years ago.
These data were supplied by Washington Economic Group (WEG) experts who conducted a comprehensive study of the entire ERAU organization – the Arizona campus, the Daytona Beach, Florida, campus and the approximately 125 worldwide campus locations for the university. Overall, ERAU collectively educates more than 33,500 students in degree programs that range from baccalaureate and master’s to doctoral degrees.
The WEG consulting firm that specializes in analyzing emerging and global economies said in its report the university is a leading creator of high-wage employment in both Arizona and Florida economies.
In Yavapai County, ERAU is rated a major and essential economic driver. Immediate support in the Quad Cities community totals more than 2,853 jobs, which result in $318 million in total economic impact, according to the report. WEG estimates that ERAU’s activities added $173 million to the county’s gross domestic product (GDP), the total value of goods and services produced.
WEG also projects that future ERAU cumulative capital spending plans during FY21 to FY25 in Arizona will have a total economic impact of $161 million and create 181 jobs.
It’s estimated that ERAU alumni generated about $86 million in total economic activity in Arizona this year.
ERAU President Barry Butler, whose main office is in Florida, praised Board of Trustees Chairman Mori Hosseini for leadership that is “paving the way for future high-paying jobs and economic prosperity.”
Butler noted that between the Arizona and the Florida campuses, coupled with the influence of worldwide campuses and online courses, the combined overall impact of ERAU now surpasses $2.3 billion.
“For more than 40 years, ERAU has made a substantial impact on Prescott,” said Prescott Mayor Greg Mengarelli. “Now, more than ever, we are grateful for not only the economic impact but also the university’s continued partnership with the city.”
Chancellor Anette Karlsson of the ERAU-Prescott campus told Quad Cities Business News, “We’re so proud to call Arizona, especially Prescott, home. Not only is it important to us to provide quality employment for hundreds of Yavapai County residents, it’s also important for us to educate and graduate a very high-caliber student.”
Karlsson says ERAU and Prescott enjoy a mutually beneficial relationship and that it is important for the university to give back to the community through activities such as planetarium shows, athletic events, the Wings Out West Airshow and Homecoming.
Many Fall Events Canceled
Karlsson expressed regret that several traditional fall activities have been canceled because of concerns for the health and safety of the university community and thousands of parents, fans and supporters. “We simply cannot risk holding large gatherings and events amid this ongoing pandemic,” she said.
Among those are the OctoberWest Homecoming and the Wings Out West Airshow ordinarily scheduled for October.
Also canceled – for the second time – is the Spring 2020 Commencement, which was postponed because of the COVID-19 shutdown mandated in May. The ceremony had been rescheduled for Oct. 2, but now has been rescheduled for some time in Spring 2021.
Eagle varsity athletes and sports fans of soccer, volleyball and cross-country are disappointed that the California Pacific Conference (Cal-Pac), of which they are members, has announced that all fall sports competitions will be moved to Spring 2021. Though coaches and athletes may undergo some training, competition schedules will be realigned in cooperation with the Cal-Pac and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).
Current projections indicate that fall enrollment will be equal to, if not slightly higher than, last year with approximately 3,000 students. QCBN
By Ray Newton, QCBN