Clarkson University Delivers $343 Million Economic Impact to Regions

Monday, January 2, 2017

Source: Clarkson News and Events

An updated economic analysis by the Center for Governmental Research, released yesterday, has reported that Clarkson University provided an economic impact of $322 million to the North Country regional economy and $21.1 million to the Capital District in 2015 through its institutional operations and jobs related to supporting student services and commercialization of research.

Expenditures by institutions like Clarkson generate state and local tax revenues, as well as personal income tax revenue. Working with the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities, the Rochester-based Center reported that independent colleges and universities generated $79.6 billion in total economic impact for New York State in 2015.

Clarkson, combined with St. Lawrence University and Paul Smith's College of Arts and Sciences, contributed $676 million to the North Country region.

In 2014-15, private colleges and universities awarded 51 percent of all bachelor’s degrees in New York, 72 percent of the master’s, and 79 percent of the doctoral and first professional degrees degrees.

“While our primary economic impact is in the North Country, our recent expansions into the Capital Region and Hudson Valley are indicative of our evolving statewide influence,” said Clarkson President Tony Collins. “As a private, nationally-ranked research university and innovation incubator, our expanding corridor of academic, research and community influence stretches from Potsdam to New York City. We focus on bringing research, thought leadership and innovation together, to create tangible commercial value, entrepreneurial growth, and to benefit society at large.”

“With powerful purpose and intentions to achieve results, Clarkson University and its students actively engage in public -private partnerships to advance economic development opportunities and programs that make our communities great places to live, learn, work and visit,” said Vice President for External Relations Kelly O. Chezum. "Joining our peers in higher education’s private sector that in 2015 educated 491,628 students, Clarkson is fully committed to fulfilling its role to provide public good in our local and regional communities, as well as New York State.”

One example of public -private partnerships is Clarkson’s Shipley Center for Innovation, which serves as the home for one of New York State’s Innovation Hot Spots. Working with regional economic development partners and research centers across the campus, Shipley staff have facilitated more than 140 new start-ups and currently have more than 380 projects in the pipeline, serving as an engine for regional economic development by engaging in the creation of new enterprises capitalizing on emerging technologies.

After five years of operation, the incubator is seeing successes, including Delta Water, which moved to the St. Lawrence County IDA building in Potsdam. The Hot Spot alone contributed $5.3 million in raised capital and directly created or retained 76 jobs in 2015-2016.

These commercial activities that go beyond the academic mission on campus also contribute to property taxes. Examples where square footage is dedicated to for-profit activities include Clarkson Hall, Peyton Hall and Lewis House on the downtown campus, which have portions rented to regional for-profit businesses. Damon Hall, a vacant building for the last 10 years is being converted into a light manufacturing incubator and is also currently planned to be added back onto the tax rolls when it opens in 2017. In addition to contributions to support community services, the University also pays property taxes on the Clarkson Inn and the University Bookstore.

President Collins also co-chairs the North Country Regional Economic Development Council (NCREDC), which was awarded $61.4 million for the North Country by New York State this month to continue its Strategic Development Plan. Through six rounds, the North Country Regional Economic Development Council was awarded $484.6 million for 450 projects in the region.

Clarkson University’s detailed economic impact data can be found at and

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