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Study shows OTC contributes more than $211 million annually to area economy

An independent study has been released detailing the economic and community impact of Ozarks Technical Community College.  The study, presented to the Board of Trustees during their February meeting, shows that OTC contributes more than $211 million each year to its community through a combination of college operations, student spending, and productivity of graduates in the workforce. 

“Our impact has been felt in Springfield and throughout southwest Missouri for many years,” explained Dr. Hal Higdon, president of the college.  “This study gave us an opportunity to quantify that impact on our community’s economy, demonstrating in hard figures what we already knew from the stories of our students:  OTC improves the careers, finances, and lives of individuals, which in turn improves the community.”

The $211 million annual economic impact is broken down into three factors.  OTC alumni contribute $168.6 million in added regional income each year; this contribution is due to the higher earnings of former OTC students and the increased output of businesses.  The college’s operations generate $31.6 million in net added income, while the spending of students who attend OTC from outside of the college’s service area generates $11.6 million; these two factors combine to provide a total of $43.2 million in income to the college’s service area economy each year. 

Additional return on investment: 

  • Over the course of their working lifetime, associate degree graduates in the OTC service area earn $381,000 more than someone with a high school diploma.
  • OTC receives $20.3 million in state appropriations and local taxes; the community receives $40.9 million back over the course of students’ careers, in the form of increased tax revenue and avoided costs.
  • Missouri benefits from improved health and reduced welfare costs, unemployment and crime, which saves the public approximately $2.9 million per year.

For more information or to read the full report, visit

The study of Ozarks Technical Community College’s economic and community impact was performed by Economic Modeling Specialists, Inc.  EMSI provides socioeconomic impact and strategic planning tools for community and technical colleges throughout the United States and Canada.


Mark Miller

College Director of Communication

Phone: 417.447.2655


Laura French

Coordinator of Public Information

Phone: 417.447.2659


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