Economy & Economic Development  November 2, 2022

University of Colorado system drove $13.3B in economic activity last year

The University of Colorado system — including CU Boulder, CU Colorado Springs, CU Denver and the CU Anschutz Medical Campus, along with UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital and Children’s Hospital Colorado — was responsible for $13.3 billion in economic impacts during the most recent fiscal year.

Of that, the four college campuses drove $8.7 billion in activity and the hospitals the remaining $4.6 billion, according to a new study from the Business Research Division of the Leeds School of Business at CU Boulder.

“CU is a significant economic driver that advances Colorado’s economy, health and quality of life,” CU president Todd Saliman said in a prepared statement accompanying the study. “Serving our state is critical to our mission and this study demonstrates some of the many ways we do so.”

The university system, Colorado’s third-largest employer, paid $2.4 billion in salaries to 47,513 faculty, staff and student workers last year.

“Within the university and beyond, CU supported 89,900 jobs – mostly in the Boulder, Denver and Colorado Springs areas — generating labor income of $6.3 billion,” the Leeds study found. 

Across its four campuses, the CU system enrolled 66,363 students this fall. Those students accounted for nearly $1 billion in spending, and visitors to the schools spent another nearly $50 million.

Research is another big driver of economic activity, especially at the Boulder campus. Systemwide, research activities had a $2.9 billion impact last year.

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