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Economic Impact


Education matters to our entire community. With more than 45,000 students served annually, chances are you have a friend, neighbor or family member who has benefited from Metropolitan Community College—or you’ve taken a class yourself.

Through education, MCC works to:

  • build a stronger, better educated workforce
  • attract the talented people we need to run our businesses, educational and cultural institutions and our many nonprofits
  • attract and retain high-quality employers
  • reduce crime, incarcerations and welfare costs
  • support the local economy
  • enhance the quality of life for all of us—the entire community

Building our economy

A 2013 economic impact study by Ernie Goss & Associates quantifies just how much MCC’s activities benefit our four-county service area and beyond. A few highlights:

  • Brain gain. When students take classes at MCC, earn a certificate or graduate with a degree, Nebraska’s economy benefits.
  • In 2012, MCC added $93.8 million to the economy via brain gain.
  • Seventy-four percent of MCC graduates stay in Nebraska to work.
  • Area attractiveness. The presence of training and higher education programs increase the attractiveness of the community and encourage the startup and/or relocation of other businesses in the state, influencing growth in non-education industries.
  • Unemployment. The presence of MCC reduces unemployment in one of Omaha’s most economically disadvantaged areas.
  • Jobs. MCC supports directly and indirectly about 5,275 jobs in the state.

Strengthening our community

MCC believes in providing the best education for the best value to our service area. The 2013 economic impact study revealed that MCC's benefits to Nebraska taxpayers are extensive.

A good investment for taxpayers
MCC derives its funds from tuition, state aid and property tax. Through its operations and educational programs, MCC generates economic benefits that flow back to taxpayers, businesses and communities in excess of the initial investment.

  • Every dollar of tax money invested in MCC today will return $3.50 in the future.
  • Nebraska taxpayers recover their financial support for MCC students in about two years.
  • MCC operations generated more than $30.1 million in state and local taxes in 2012.
  • In 2012, MCC generated $529.1 million in sales or business volume for the entire state of Nebraska.

MCC’s commitment to keeping costs down has allowed it to offer affordable tuition rates.

  • Between 1980 and 2012, MCC’s tuition grew at one-third the rate of U.S. postsecondary institution.
  • As a result of MCC's delivery of education to more and more credit and noncredit students with only modest increases in MCC's staffing, MCC has grown its tuition and related expenses at a much slower pace that its counterparts in Nebraska and the nation.

Supporting our families

MCC is committed to offering the community affordable, accessible and quality education. For many local residents, MCC’s programs are a means to increased self-sufficiency for themselves and their families.

MCC's educational support to students:

  • Sixty percent are part-time
  • Average age is 28.8
  • More than 50 percent are women
  • More than 20 percent are minorities
  • More than 70 percent of graduates remain in Nebraska to work

MCC provides the skills and education employers need now and in the future—leading, in turn, to better jobs
for area residents.

  • MCC students graduate with the lowest debt burden compared to any other schools in the state.
  • Every hour of credit classes boosts the income of an MCC student by $159 per year.
  • Students with an associate degree earned an average of $38,272 per year in 2012 compared to $33,696 for high school graduates and $24,128 for high school dropouts.
  • On average, MCC graduates earned $37,011 for 2011, $577 greater than the Nebraska average.

For more details on MCC's economic impact, visit Moving Nebraska Forward: Economic Impact of MCC.

Previous economic impact studies

In 2009, MCC in partnership with the Nebraska Community College Association, hired Economic Modeling Specialists Inc. of Moscow, Idaho, to provide the public with a clearer picture of the College’s impact on the local economy. The model EMSI used to measure MCC’s impact on the economy took more than a year to develop and has been subjected to peer review and field-tested on more than 350 different community and technical colleges throughout the United States and Canada. The results are based on solid economic theory, carefully drawn functional relationships and a wealth of national and local education-related data.

Four types of benefits were tracked: (1) regional economic benefits (contributions to local job and income formation); (2) earnings for graduates; (3) a broad collection of social benefits (improved health, reduced crime, lower welfare and unemployment); and (4) the return to taxpayers for their college support.

To learn more from the 2009 study about MCC’s impact on the economy, view the Executive Summary and summaries by perspective: Taxpayer Perspective Summary, Social Benefits Perspective Summary, Business Perspective Summary and Student Perspective Summary.


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