University officials at StFX say a study has shown the school’s economic impact on the provincial economy was over $480, 000, 000 for the 2016-2017 year.
Joe MacDonald, Executive Director of Government Relations, says for every dollar that is spent by university officials, the provincial economy gets about $7 dollars; along with government investment, that’s of another $8- combining to be $15 coming back to the economy for every dollar spent.
He says they’ve never undertaken an economic impact study this in-depth.
MacDonald tells The Hawk they knew they had an impact on the provincial economy, but were surprised about the local impact.
“We knew, at a certain level, that it was significant,” he says. “But we didn’t realize the significance to which we were actually having such a powerful impact on the overall regional economy of Antigonish and Northeastern Nova Scotia, from Pictou Co. right through to the Strait.”
MacDonald says a variety of data was reviewed.
“What we looked at were five different areas,” he says. “We looked at institutional spending, student spending, visitor spending, alumni earnings and we looked at research and knowledge.”
MacDonald says they have a handful of projects that are being worked on that will have a further economic impact on the provincial economy in the future.