Media Relations

Press Release:


FAU Has More Than $6.3 Billion Economic Impact on Service Areas

BOCA RATON, FL (July 30, 2012) – Florida Atlantic University has an estimated economic impact of more than $6.3 billion annually in its six-county service region, according to a recently released project report led by Khi Thai, Ph.D., FAU professor of public administration, and designed by William B. Stronge, Ph.D., FAU professor emeritus of economics.

“FAU clearly fulfills the responsibility of servicing and engaging in the lives of the communities within its six-county region on many different levels,” said FAU President Mary Jane Saunders. “This University is dedicated to economic development, research and community engagement and will continue to expand upon these areas in the years to come.”

The purpose of this study is to measure the tangible economic contribution of FAU to the state of Florida’s economy. Since its dedication ceremony in 1964, FAU has been a leading center of higher education with a commitment to the economic development of South Florida and the Treasure Coast, as well as the entire state. 

According to the report, FAU is a major economic driver as a purchaser of goods and services from private business and an employer of 3,543 men and women who spend their income in the local market.  FAU graduates and students also hold jobs in the region, and alumni, students and visitors alike purchase goods and services in the local economy.
            Highlights of the study include:

  • FAU contributed $2.5 billion to direct spending in Florida for the 2010-11 fiscal year.
  • FAU activities are responsible for more than 60,450 in-state jobs.
  • The FAU presence in the state generates a $4.1 billion increase in Florida’s gross domestic product and a $6.3 billion increase in gross sales.
  • In 2009-10, FAU graduates contributed more than $2.3 billion more in direct economic impacts than high school graduates in Florida.
  • FAU students spend more than $509.9 million annually in Florida over and above tuition, fees, and University-supplied room and board.
  • Those who came to visit FAU students spent more than $39 million in the state.

“FAU’s Board of Trustees is committed to the University’s incredible ability to drive the economy within the six-county region it serves,” said Board Chair Robert J. Stilley. “FAU is an impressive institution, and the impact it has will only increase in importance as it continues in vast discoveries of research, as well as the growing potential to recruit science-based companies to relocate here.”

A student survey under the administration of Alexandru Roman, a Ph.D. student in FAU’s School of Public Administration in the College for Design and Social Inquiry, also was undertaken for this study. The data
collected from 805 students in January 2012 indicated that the average student expected to spend $13,206.23 during the semester, excluding tuition.  Spending for room rent, utilities, and food and dining accounted for 40 percent of the expenditures; transportation accounted for more than 26.6 percent; and another 15 percent was expended for recreation and entertainment.

To view the entire economic impact report, visit /.


Florida Atlantic University, established in 1961, officially opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University serves more than 29,000 undergraduate and graduate students on seven campuses and sites. FAU’s world-class teaching and research faculty serves students through 10 colleges: the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters, the College of Business, the College for Design and Social Inquiry, the College of Education, the College of Engineering and Computer Science, the Graduate College, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. FAU is ranked as a High Research Activity institution by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. For more information, visit

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