Two reports released by Beacon Economics, an independent economic research firm, have concluded that “[Chapman University’s] activities generate significant economic output that supports thousands of jobs and creates millions of dollars in essential tax revenues at the state and local levels.”
According to the reports, Chapman University generates more than $213 million in economic output for the City of Orange annually, and more than $1.1 billion for California.
Other significant data from the reports include:
- $9.8 million in property taxes paid to the City of Orange between 2011-2021.
- $82.7 million university spending in the City of Orange, $64.4 million in student spending and $2.2 million in visitor spending.
- $52.6 million state and local tax revenue generated by Chapman economic activity .
Though the university has conducted similar analyses in the past through the A. Gary Anderson Center, they have always focused on Chapman’s economic contributions to the community. The new report digs deeper, exploring the many cultural, social and philanthropic contributions that Chapman provides as well, which are often more difficult to quantify.
”The value of an institution is in its relationship with the local community,” says university President Daniele C. Struppa. “We are proud to call Orange our home and want to give back in every way that we can. These numbers are very impressive, but it’s our strong partnerships in the community that are the most meaningful.”
Chapman’s Growing Benefits to the Community
“With these two reports, we are able to paint a broader picture of all of the ways Chapman is positively contributing to our local community,” says Alisa Driscoll, the university’s vice president of community relations. The Office of Community Relations was created six years ago to be a consistent resource for the university’s neighbors, businesses and nonprofit organizations.
For Driscoll, who is a resident of the City of Orange, the most powerful information that these reports provide is not just the direct economic impact of the university – sales tax, property, tax, all of those critical items to the welfare of our hometown – but also the ripple effect of Chapman’s contributions to the community.
“For example, the number of jobs that we’re supporting in our local community is 2,666 in the City of Orange and 5,428 in Orange County as a whole,” she explains. “That’s a lot of people who are being supported just because of Chapman University’s presence in the community. And it’s not just our employees. We’re supporting construction work, real estate, retail, restaurants… and it’s really a powerful thing to show the university’s impact in that way.”
The reports also highlight the amount of community engagement that the university has conducted, which has been an institutional focus over the past several years. “All of our schools and colleges are giving back in significant ways, and the university has made it a priority to demonstrate that Chapman is proud to be a valuable partner and good neighbor with the communities that surround our campus,” says Driscoll.
Here to Support Our Neighbors
This report examines community efforts in detail, giving prominence to initiatives that don’t always get much attention.
“Before working on this report, there were a few things that I was not as fully aware of,” says Driscoll, “one of them being all of the ways Chapman is contributing to our local parks. Chapman University paid to develop the softball field at El Camino Park to make it NCAA compatible. And we continue to maintain that field as well as the baseball field at Hart Park.”
To date, Chapman has spent almost $450,000 on maintenance costs for Hart Park since June 2017. “This is something that provides a real tangible community benefit,” says Driscoll. “It’s not just for the use of our sports teams who were there during the season. It’s available for community use as well.”
“That’s something we feel really passionate about, investing in our local community to provide those additional resources for our neighbors to take advantage of,” says Driscoll.