Paine College Helps to Make Augusta/Richmond County, Georgia Strong by Generating $33 million in Total Economic Impact

Posted by painewebmaster | 11/15/2017 01:33 AM
New UNCF Study Confirms that Paine College Contributes to Local and Regional Economies

Paine College is an important economic engine in its community, generating substantial economic returns year after year, and a new landmark study commissioned by UNCF (United Negro College Fund) confirms it. 

HBCUs Make America Strong: The Positive Economic Impact of Historically Black Colleges and Universities documents the significant economic contributions of Paine College and the nation’s network of HBCUs by quantifying their impact on the economy, employment and increased earning power of their students. The study was underwritten by Citi Foundation and the economic estimates were prepared by the University of Georgia’s Selig Center for Economic Growth. Key findings of the study are below: 

- Paine College generates $33 million in total economic impact.
- Paine College generates 400 jobs for the local and regional economies 
- The 2014 graduates of Paine can expect to earn $274 Million over their lifetimes, 77 percent more than they could expect to earn without a college credential.
- Paine College 2015 valedictorian, Sharifah Williams, graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications and emphasis in Journalism. In 2016, Ms. Williams graduated from New York University Tandon School of Engineering with a Master of Science in Management Technology. And, Earl L. Ishmal, Principal of Blakeney Elementary School in Burke County, taught in the Richmond County Public School system for eight years after having graduated from Paine in 1999. He remained in the area for 20 years serving in the public school systems. 

The presence of Paine College in this area means a $33 million boost to the area’s economic activity, on-campus, off-campus, and well beyond the campus, contributing to stronger growth and stronger communities. 

This study makes clear that while benefits flow to Paine College graduates who enter the workforce with sharper skills and vastly enhanced earning prospects, these benefits also flow to the local and regional economies connected to Augusta/Richmond County.  

According to Dr. Jerry Hardee, Paine’s President, “HBCUs like Paine are vibrant institutions in their communities and are creating jobs and increasing economic expenditures in our surrounding community, as well as educating and preparing our students for the 21st century.” 

“This new report changes the narrative and demonstrates that HBCUs, like Paine are feeding the community’s need for a college-educated workforce and driving economic growth,” said UNCF’s President and CEO Dr. Michael Lomax. “These institutions have led the way in developing and polishing the practices necessary to get under-prepared, first-generation students ready for college, but they also help fill critical jobs with college-educated workers in the community.”

HBCUs have long been bastions of academic achievement. It is clear to see, however, that the value of Paine College is not solely confined to educational impacts. HBCUs Make America Strong: The Positive Economic Impact of Historically Black Colleges and Universities demonstrates that Paine College matters not only to its students, but also to the local, regional and national economies. 

Please visit to access the full report.

About the Frederick D. Patterson Research Institute. UNCF’s Frederick D. Patterson Research Institute (FDPRI) is the nation's foremost research organization focusing on the educational status of African Americans from pre-school to and through college. Committed to understanding and expanding the pathways that lead to educational attainment, FDPRI conducts and disseminates research that informs policymakers, educators, philanthropists and the general public on how to best improve educational opportunities for and outcomes of African Americans and other underrepresented minorities across the pre-school-through-college-graduation pipeline. 

About UNCF

UNCF (the United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, supports and strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding 17 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at over 1,100 colleges and universities across the country. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized motto, ‟A mind is a terrible thing to waste.”® Learn more at or for continuous updates and news, follow UNCF on Twitter at @UNCF.