Impact Maryland

Maryland’s 16 community colleges pumped an additional $8.7 billion into the state economy while delivering a healthy return on investment to taxpayers, students and society. 

  • Increased lifetime earnings for students.
  • Larger pool of skilled workers for employers.
  • Higher tax revenue for state and local jurisdictions.
  • Increased appeal of Maryland as a destination for new and relocating businesses.
See more information about the report and Emsi Burning Glass below.

The Economic Impact of Maryland’s 16 Community Colleges



In FY 2018-19, Maryland’s community colleges added $8.7 billion in income to the Maryland economy, a value approximately equal to 2.1% of the state’s total gross state product (GSP).

Expressed in terms of jobs, the community colleges’ impact supported 113,805 state jobs. For perspective, the activities of the colleges and their students support one out of every 33 jobs in Maryland.

Maryland’s community colleges employed 18,610 full-time and part-time faculty and staff. Payroll amounted to $974.6 million, much of which was spent in the state for groceries, mortgage and rent payments, dining out, and other household expenses. The colleges spent another $409.9 million on day-to-day expenses related to facilities, supplies, and professional services.

The net impact of the colleges’ operations spending added $1 billion in income to the state economy.

Economic Value of Investing in Maryland’s 16 Community Colleges 

Maryland’s community colleges’ FY 2018-19 students paid a present value of $404.4 million to cover the cost of tuition, fees, supplies, and interest on student loans. They also forwent $1.2 billion in money that they would have earned had they been working instead of attending college.

In return for their investment, students will receive $5.4 billion in increased earnings over their working lives. This translates to a return of $3.30 in higher future earnings for every dollar students invest in their education. Students’ average annual rate of return is 17.5%.

In FY 2018-19, Maryland invested $2.8 billion to fully support it’s community colleges. In turn, the Maryland economy will grow by $13 billion, over the course of students’ working lives. Society will also benefit from $229.2 million of public and private sector savings.

For every dollar invested in educations provided by Maryland’s community colleges during the analysis year, people in Maryland will receive $4.70 in return, for as long as Maryland’s community colleges’ FY 2018-19 students remain active in the state workforce.

Taxpayers provided Maryland’s community colleges with $917.3 million of funding in FY 2018-19. In return, they will benefit from added tax revenue, stemming from students’ higher lifetime earnings and increased business output, amounting to $1.1 billion. A reduced demand for government-funded services in Maryland will add another $122 million in benefits to taxpayers. 

For every dollar of public money invested in the community colleges, taxpayers will receive $1.30 in return, over the course of students’ working lives. The average annual rate of return for taxpayers is 3.7%.

Please contact MACC if you are interested in obtaining the complete report or a PowerPoint presentation of this information.