State Economy Benefits From MNU

By Carol Best
August 11, 2014
smithWEB

According to a new study, MidAmerica Nazarene University generates $44.6 million in new income each year for the Kansas economy.  Based on 2012-2013 data, the economic impact of the university’s payroll and operations alone was $28.7 million in added regional income. And MNU generates $9.4 million in social benefits to the state through increased business output and improvements in health and public safety that accrue from the graduates of MNU that stay in Kansas.

Visitors to MNU from outside the MNU Service Area impacted the economy through their off-campus expenditures at hotels, restaurants, gas stations, and other businesses, adding approximately $4.3 million in income to the regional economy. The study did not research the effect on Missouri’s economy meaning that MNU’s impact to the local Metro economy is even greater than shown in this data.

“MidAmerica Nazarene University is an invaluable part of the Olathe community, and the greater Kansas City region as a whole,” said Tim McKee, Olathe Chamber of Commerce CEO. “As an educator, employer and neighbor, MNU’s social and economic impact to the community is huge. From the students they’re attracting to the region, to their employment and capital spending – the contributions MNU makes to the community is part of the reason Olathe is such a great place to live, work and play.”

The new study was commissioned through the Kansas Independent College Association. KICA recently released “Demonstrating the Economic Value of the Kansas Independent Colleges and Universities,” which specifically analyzes the contributions to the Kansas economy by private colleges that would not otherwise occur if the colleges did not exist.  The report’s findings show that the colleges’ impact on Kansas’ economy is nearly equivalent to Kansas hosting the NFL Super Bowl nine times each year.

“We have always known that Kansas’ independent colleges were important to the Kansas economy,” said Matt Lindsey, president of the Kansas Independent College Association and Fund which commissioned the study.  “This study demonstrates just how truly powerful the contribution is that our students, faculty, and institutions make and how essential Kansas’ independent colleges are to Kansas’ future.”

The research was conducted by Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI).  The full report can be found at www.kscolleges.org/economic-impact.html.

The announcement comes at the same time that MNU was named to the 50 Most Affordable Christian Universities in the U.S. list published by Christian Universities Online. Criteria for the list required institutions be accredited by the Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS) or a member/affiliate of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU). The average net price data used to build the ranking was sourced from the latest data published by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). MNU is the only university in Kansas on the list.

Traditional semester classes begin on August 26 at MNU. The university is expecting more than 200 new and transfer students in addition to its returning students and the year-round students in the School of Professional and Graduate Studies. Last fall’s enrollment was 1,862.

The Kansas Independent College Association, founding in 1976, is a 501(c)4 organization that works to provide support and services to the independent colleges of the state.  The member institutions are Baker University, Benedictine College, Bethany College, Bethel College, Central Christian College, Donnelly College, Friends University, Hesston College, Kansas Wesleyan University, McPherson College, Manhattan Christian College, MidAmerica Nazarene University, Newman University, Ottawa University, Southwestern College, Sterling College, Tabor College, and the University of St. Mary.