TIGERVILLE, S.C. (courtesy ngu.edu) — A new economic study shows North Greenville University is making a total impact of $101,851,206 on the region’s economy. That impact includes funding of 888 jobs through the institution and its business partners.
The fiscal footprint of the private university, which started in 1892 as a school for children in the Blue Ridge foothills, will generate nearly $14.6 million in tax revenue for the year.
Those findings are part of a 2022 economic impact study completed by Lilly Consulting Group, LLC, in November. The analysis by the Sylva, North Carolina-based firm included multiplied economic impact of five factors: operations expenditures, labor expenditures, student spending, visitor spending, and capital expenditures.
“We, as a long-standing Upstate educational enterprise, are blessed to learn that providing a distinctive Christ-centered educational environment is also providing a distinctive catalyst for economic strength in our region,” said NGU President Dr. Gene C. Fant, Jr. “This institution was started to meet a critical need for education in the late 1800s. To be thriving in producing graduates and to be a significant economic engine in our area nearly 130 years later is a testament to God’s provision as we seek to follow a clear, biblically faithful mission.”
With an overall enrollment of nearly 2,150, NGU operates its main campus for undergraduate students in Tigerville, with graduate and online programs operated through its Tim Brashier Campus in Greer. The university’s fall 2022 enrollment included students from 41 states and 25 other countries.
Recent campus improvements and ongoing capital projects contributed to the strength of the impact findings, as NGU is in the midst of a $9.7 million transformation of its historic administration building, creating a new home for the university’s College of Business and Entrepreneurship. A total of 43 recent improvement projects on NGU’s campuses in Tigerville and Greer were part of the capital expenditures segment of the study. University officials said NGU anticipates being in “capital improvement mode” for years to come.
The economic impact study drew information from NGU’s 2020-21 Annual Report, financial statements spanning 2019-2021, and information on capital projects, as well as data from questionnaires developed for students and visitors. Lilly Consulting Group worked with the university’s Economic Impact Study Steering Committee. The seven-person committee. which included faculty, administrators and staff representatives, was chaired by NGU Executive Vice President Rich Grimm.
“The university’s impact on the region’s economy, as demonstrated in the Lilly Consulting Group study, is noteworthy and underscores the vital role NGU plays in the area,” said Grimm, the institution’s chief operating officer. “As we produce transformational leaders for church and society, we also are contributing significantly to the economic wellbeing of the Upstate, for which we give thanks.”
Along with the Labor Expenditures impact of the university providing direct and indirect jobs, the study’s findings were bolstered by local business sales to employees, students, parents, and summer camp participants.
“It is gratifying to see how a relatively small institution is having an outsized impact on the region’s economy,” said David Lilly, founder and principal consultant with Lilly Consulting Group. “From the capital projects undertaken, to the taxes contributed, to the jobs supported, North Greenville University is having a strong and lasting impact on South Carolina’s Upstate.”